Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Kings of the Wyld

Kings of the Wyld
by Nicholas Eames
Orbit, 2017. 529 pages. Fantasy.

In one of the most unique recent twists on the adventuring fantasy genre, Kings of the Wyld follows a band of adventurers who have retired from the hero life. Clay "Slow-hand" Cooper has retired to a tiny village and works as a guard to support his wife and daughter. Then one of Clay's former band companions, Gabe, shows up asking for help with an impossible task--to infiltrate a city besieged by an army of monsters to save his daughter Rose. What ensues is an amazing adventure of washed out heroes completing impossible task after impossible task, losing limbs, saving the known world, and finding the cure of an incurable disease, all while they begrudgingly deal with the fact that they aren't as young as they used to be. If anything, Clay learns that being a hero is more about the friends you have, not being afraid to take risks, and a whole lot of luck.

Eames injects a huge dose of humor into his absurdist fantasy story (a la Terry Pratchet) while grounding it in a very relatable situation--a father doing everthing he can to save his daughter. For readers who liked The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch and Terry Pratchett's Discworld, this book is a must read.

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