I received this book for free from bookbridgr, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Hunter's Kind by Rebecca Levene
Series: The Hollow Gods #2
Published by Hodder Genres: Fantasy
Source: bookbridgr, Publisher
Born in tragedy and raised in poverty, Krish never aspired to be anything greater than what he was: a humble goatheard, tending his flock on the slopes of his isolated mountain home.
But Krish has learned that he's the son of the king of Ashanesland - and the moon god reborn. Now, with the aid of his allies, Krish is determined to fight his murderous father and seize control of Ashanesland. But his allies Dae Hyo, Eric and Olufemi, are dangerously unreliable and hiding secrets of their own.
To take Ashanesland, Krish must travel to the forbidden Mirror Town and unlock the secrets of its powerful magic, but the price of his victory may be much greater than the consequences of his defeat... For, deep in the distant Moon Forest lives a girl called Cwen - a disciple of the god known only as the Hunter. She believes that Krish represents all that is evil in the world. And she has made it her life's mission to seek Krish and destroy all who fight by his side.
The sequel to Smiler's Fair sees the start of the war that will unite Ashaneland - or tear it apart forever.
Ever since I closed the back cover of Smiler’s Fair back in February (review here) I have been desperate to get my hands on The Hunter’s Kind, the second book in this epic fantasy series.
As with any book I’ve really been looking forward to I was slightly nervous in case it wouldn’t meet the high expectations set by Smiler’s Fair, I needn’t have worried – it exceeded those expectations!
The Hunter’s Kind picks up exactly where we left the story at the end of Smiler’s Fair – with the exception of a small interlude to introduce a new character, Cwen, who will go on to play a significant role in this book.
Cwen is one of several new characters we meet in this novel. She is a hawk, one chosen to serve The Hunter, who in turn serves Mizhara, the Sun God. Inherently the enemy of Krish, (the reincarnation of Yron the Moon God) Cwen fights his servants, monstrous creatures that live in the shadows. I actually really liked the addition of Cwen, she’s a strong female character and her development throughout the book is really interesting.
Told through the same multi-character narrative as the first book, The Hunter’s Kind sees Krish being hunted by his father the King, as well as Sang Ki (who I really disliked in the first book but grew on me in this one) and The Hunter and her hawks. As he tries to evade capture with Dae Hyo and Olufemi, he must put his trust in strangers and hope they are loyal to the Moon God. What develops is a war between those loyal to Mizhara, and those loyal to Yron.
I felt the story continued to ‘connect the dots’ as was the case at the end of Smiler’s Fair, with characters converging, though often on opposing sides of the war. The character development of both existing and new characters was, again, very interesting. We saw new sides to our old friends, and not always a good side!
I particularly enjoyed the development of Eric’s story. I was thoroughly intrigued by Salvation in book one, and Eric’s story escalates there in this second book. As does his connection with Rii, who is even more awesome in book two – I want a Rii in my life.
As I’ve come to expect from Rebecca Levene’s writing, her narrative is clever crafted and beautifully told. Her world is fascinating and incredibly well built – we see more of the history of the world, as well as magic and runes in this book. She has also managed to create characters on BOTH sides of the war that I am thoroughly invested in – surely the mark of great writing?
Honestly, I loved this book. I did have a slight issue with part of the ending – let’s just say that I felt there was rather a lot of unnecessary death. However, this is absolutely a five star novel for me. If you haven’t started this series yet and you’re a fan of epic fantasy I highly recommend you check it out.
In case you need further proof of my love of this series, my special edition (sprayed edges, numbered and signed *swoon*) copy that I ordered arrived recently. At the time of writing Goldsboro Books still have stock!
EDIT – the kindle version of Smiler’s Fair is currently just £2.99. Go on, treat yourself!
Have you read The Hunter’s Kind yet? I’d love to hear your thoughts.