Thank you to Dave from The Write Reads and the author for the ecopy as part of this Blog Tour.
Series: The Wildfire Cycle
Author: D.P. Woolliscroft
Length: >500 pages
Mareth is a bard, a serial underachiever, a professional drunk, and general disappointment to his father. Despite this, Mareth has one thing going for him. He can smell opportunity. The King is dead and an election for the new Lord Protector has been called. If he plays his cards right, if he can sing a story that will put the right person in that chair, his future fame and drinking money is all but assured. But, alas, it turns out Mareth has a conscience after all.
Neenahwi is the daughter to Jyuth, the ancient wizard who founded the Kingdom of Edland and she is not happy. It’s not just that her father was the one who killed the King, or that he didn’t tell her about his plans. She’s not happy because her father is leaving, slinking off into retirement and now she has to clean up his mess.
Alana is a servant at the palace and the unfortunate soul to draw the short straw to attend to Jyuth. Alana knows that intelligence and curiosity aren’t valued in someone of her station, but sometimes she can’t help herself and so finds herself drawn into the Wizard’s schemes, and worst of all, coming up with her own plans.
Chance brings this unlikely band together to battle through civil unrest, assassinations, political machinations, pirates and monsters, all for a common cause that they know, deep down, has no chance of succeeding – bringing hope to the people of Kingshold.
Kingshold is the first book in D.P. Woolliscroft’s first series and it’s a great start for this epic fantasy adventure! It has wonderful characters, detailed descriptions and a world that’s going through some pretty big changes!
As every high/epic fantasy book with multiple POVs, the first few chapters take a bit to get into. We have a lot of characters to meet and we stumble into the story right after the King and Queen have died. I struggled a bit to connect with the characters and therefore the story at first because each new chapter brought a new POV right when I got a little accustomed to the last, but I’m used to that from these type of books and I know to be patient. And it really was worth it!
As soon as I hid Alana’s chapter I started to get a grasp of the world and the chaos it has been thrown into. I loved the unique situation Edland is in. I don’t think I’ve read any other fantasy book where they end the monarchy and call for an election. At least none come to mind right now. It was incredibly interesting to read about with all it’s up’s and downs, the organisation, the different strategies to gain the votes of eligible voters … so much to think through. It won’t get boring I promise.
The other strong point of Kingshold is its characters. They are all very well developed, multilayered and intriguing. And with each new chapter and changing POV, I thought: This one is my favourite. No this one. No this one!
Usually, I have a couple POVs I love and some I don’t care for, not so here. I absolutely loved them all. It’s great how all there lives start to intertwine and how they react to each other. They each have their own strength, wishes and fears, even the side characters. You feel them, you know they have their own aspirations … they all just feel very real.
I’m a character-focused reader, so this was perfect for me. The descriptions can probably get a bit too detailed for the liking of some, but I actually liked that. It makes it quite easy to get fully immersed in the world.
If I had to choose a favourite character, it would probably be Alana. Maybe because she was the first chapter I really connected to the story but she is also just a really intriguing character. She is smart, kind and very good at seeing opportunities. I love her quick thinking, I love how she cares for her sister and I really enjoyed the conversations she had with Jyuth. But she also has her doubts and fears and those made her really relatable.
Motega and his friends Florian and Trypp are my close seconds. I loved their chapters, the adventures they went on and how they communicated with each other, the respect and friendship between them are just lovely to read about.
But again, I love them all. From POV characters like Mareth, who has an incredible character development to side characters like Jules or Petra who get to shine and show and surprise with what they are actually capable of.
I was never bored throughout the book, it’s a great start in a new series, even more impressive because it’s a debut!
I can only recommend you pick it up if you like detailed fantasy worlds, with political intrigue and lot’s of very unique characters!
Born in Derby in England, on the day before mid-summers day, David Peter Woolliscroft was very nearly magical. If only his dear old mum could have held on for another day. But magic called out to him over the years, with a many a book being devoured for its arcane properties. David studied Accounting at Cardiff University where numbers weaved their own kind of magic and he has since been a successful business leader in the intervening twenty years.
Adventures have been had. More books devoured and then one day, David had read enough where the ideas he had kept bottled up needed a release valve. And thus, rising out of the self-doubt like a phoenix at a clicky keyboard, a writer was born. The Wildfire Cycle is David’s debut series.
He is married to his wife Haneen and has a daughter Liberty, who all live with their mini golden doodle Rosie in Princeton NJ.
David is one of the few crabs to escape the crab pot.