Jeff Wheeler

The Best Books of 2016

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The Best Books of 2016

2016 may not have been the best of years, but it saw the release of some amazing books. And since Elizabeth has been focusing more on her artwork these last few months (check out her Daily Doodles on instagram) this year I get to keep the entire “Best Of” list for myself, myself, you hear?! Mwa ha haaaa!

*Ahem* Sorry, got a little carried away there. Click the jump for a list, in no particular order, of my ten favorite books from 2016.

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Review: The King’s Traitor

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Review: The King’s Traitor

                   The game is ending.

Jeff Wheeler brings the Kingfountain trilogy to a close with The King’s Traitor, an epic story drawing partly from English history but mostly from Arthurian legend.

Owen Kiskaddon has served his regent faithfully these last few years. Well, except for the fact that he’s been hiding the identity of the young boy Drew, the son of King Severn’s deposed nephew and true king of Ceredigion. It’s been a struggle for Owen, who – despite losing all contact with his family and having to stand by while the love of his life is married to another man – still believes that loyalty to a cruel king is better than treason. But he’s watched Severn turn into exactly the kind of horrible person that everyone always believed he was, and Owen is putting plans in place in order for the true heir to claim the Hollow Crown. Until that heir is old enough to rule, Owen will have to grit his teeth and continue to go along with Severn’s schemes.

Severn’s latest plan to make sure no other kingdom (or anyone, really) has more power than he does is to start a war with one of his allies. Still playing the loyal duke, Owen travels to nearby Brythonica to give Severn the pretext to invade by making an insulting demand that’s sure to be refused: the marriage of Owen with the reclusive Duchess of Brythonica.

The Duchess’s response to Owen’s proposal is the very last thing he expected. Now things are going to get really complicated.

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Review: The Thief’s Daughter

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Review: The Thief’s Daughter

Jeff Wheeler returns us to the kingdom of Ceredigion with The Thief’s Daughter, the second book in the Kingfountain series.

It’s been ten years since the end of The Queen’s Poisoner, and they’ve been some of the happiest years of Owen Kiskaddon’s life. The terrified little Fountain-Blessed boy has now grown into a capable young man, training every day to become a fighter and tactician. Even better, he’s been able to spend most of that time living with the kindly Duke Horwath and the Duke’s granddaughter, Evie (that’s Elysabeth Victoria Mortimer to you.) Owen’s best friend – and possibly the love of his life – has grown into a beautiful and devastatingly intelligent young woman who’s just as determined to marry Owen as she was when she was nine.

But a nearby kingdom plans to attack Ceredigion, and there are rumors that one of the King’s deposed nephews is still alive and returning to reclaim the throne. Owen and Evie will have to thread their way through plots and assassination attempts while trying to prove their loyalty to a king who will do anything to protect his kingdom and his crown, even at the expense of everyone around him.

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Review: The Queen’s Poisoner

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Review: The Queen’s Poisoner

Jeff Wheeler (author of almost two dozen fantasy books including the Mirrowen trilogy and the Muirwood series) is set to release his latest book on April 1, the start of a brand new trilogy: the Kingfountain Series. A different kingdom in a different world, and a different direction for the successful fantasy author; this will be the first time he’s told a story from an eight-year-old boy’s point of view.

The Duke of Kiskaddon has betrayed the king. Never mind that he was trying to help overthrow a usurper; there are consequences for treason. The Duke has already seen his eldest son executed in retaliation, and now to protect the rest of his family he has to send another one of his sons to the court of Kingfountain to act as hostage to the notoriously bad-tempered King Severn.

Small for his age, quiet, and almost paralyzingly shy with adults, Owen Kiskaddon has to learn to survive court intrigues in a place where it’s widely understood that he’ll be killed the moment his parents step out of line again. He’s helped by the few friends he makes in Kingfountain: the kindly cook and her husband, the princess Elyse (daughter of the king that Severn overthrew), and the taciturn Duke Horwith. But to stay alive and try to change his parents’ fate he’ll have to rely on a person that many think died years ago, someone who’s true identity is a mystery, but who has a terrifying reputation: The Queen’s Poisoner.

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