There is an announcement to be made….
Exiles, book #4 in Jaye L. Knight’s awesome “Ilyon Chronicles” series, is now available!!
Yaaaayyy!!!! *grinning ridiculously*
Some of you who know me know that I really love this book series, and it gives me no small pleasure to be a part of this awesome release party!! Somehow this date totally sneaked up and jumped on me out of the blue, which is why I am doing this post today. Yes, ladies, gentlemen, Jedi, and hobbits, the Elven Padawan strikes again! I was supposed to do this post yesterday….and missed. I don’t want to offer a lot of excuses, but I will simply say that I had a very long and pretty unexpected class I had to attend yesterday, was up late trying to finish assignments for it it Thursday night, and therefore ended up, shall we say, absolutely “zonked” Friday afternoon.
But now I’m back, and I’m talking about Exiles!! So hang on, and get ready for one mammoth blog post!! 😉 XD
About the Book
Exiled after their defeat in Samara, the Resistance struggles to find allies in their quest to restore King Balen to his throne and put an end to the emperor’s tyranny. When the crete people refuse to lend their aid, Balen leads a group to Dorland to reason with them and win their support. However, enemies prove to be everywhere, and they find themselves in a fight to keep Dorland from becoming Daican’s latest conquest.
Back in Landale, the arrival of a new enemy forces Trask and Anne to tread more carefully than ever. Tensions are rising, and the enemy is determined to test Anne’s loyalty and root out the location of Trask and the Resistance once and for all.
Feeling trapped within the walls of Valcré, Prince Daniel must contend with an ever-eroding relationship with his father. As their clashes escalate, the situation becomes potentially life threatening when his loyalty is called into question. His sister seems bent on branding him a traitor and actively seeking to condemn him to the fate of those put to death in their father’s new arena. Daniel is certain his father would never execute his only son and heir but, with other forces at work, it might not be that simple.
One small misstep could prove fatal for all.
Available now on Amazon!
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Haven’t discovered the world of Ilyon yet? The first three Kindle books are on sale August 11th – 14th! You can find them on Amazon.
About the Author
Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.
You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Etsy.
Exiles: Book Review from The Elven Padawan
I have to tell you all right here and now, this book is very awesome. Very very very awesome. And I’m supposed to be reviewing it in a conhesive and helpful, informative way. But that’s so hard, when pretty much the main thing I want to do is squeal and start up a typical fangirl rant that will leave anyone not already familiar with this series totally clueless. So I’m going to try to give a summary of my feelings and what I think about this book, and hopefully it will be understandable to my readers. 😉 XD
I was so excited when I first found out we’d be seeing more of Prince Daniel in this entry to the “Ilyon Chronicles”. We saw a bit of him in the previous parts, but not nearly enough for my liking. He seemed like a very interesting character, and I was rooting for his conversion to trust in Elôm since the very beginning. This book will not disapoint anyone else who also loves this character, and Davira’s evilness had me scared to death for him most of the time.
Speaking of which, let’s talk about her….Davira, I mean. If anyone thought she was unpleasant, mean, and strikingly evil with ice-cold maliciousness before, know that that impression was not in the least a misinterpretation. In Exiles more so than ever before, however, we begin to see just how morally corrupt she is. I mean, obviously anyone who has such an extreme interest in gruesome modes of torture and wants to utterly obliterate those who oppose her and her father’s regime is a bit messed up, but in Exiles we find out just how little she values the life of other beings when it gets in the way of her temporary pleasure.
Now on to the Resistance….
I was also thrilled to get more from Trask and Lady Anne in this book. I’ve really loved those individual characters from the first book, and have had an extreme interest in their developing relationship as well… 😉
Anne is always so cool under pressure, even from certain nasty corrupt noblemen who are determined to court her no matter how much she tries to escape them, and is quite the heroine in my mind, though she isn’t riding into battle or charging the Emperor’s gates. She so dignified and ladylike, yet has an awesome spunky flame and love of fun about her. She often supplies info to Trask and his rebels, even going in as something awful close to a spy on occasion in order to keep the Resistance in the know on the Emperor and his minions’ plans. She reminds me very much of another great character from another awesome book, Lady Dolphin from Wayne Thomas Batson’s Isle of Swords and Isle of Fire. For his part, Trask, the young leader of the Resistance, reminds me of a mix between Darien from the audiodrama Darien’s Rise (that’s pretty much exactly how I imagine his voice!), and Kanan Jarrus from Star Wars: Rebels, particularly the early seasons. These two as a couple are pretty adorable, and the respect and trust they have for each other is amazing.
There are more cretes in this installation to the series full on non-human characters (yay!!), and we finally get to spend some time in a crete village in the tops of the trees (even bigger yay!!!). Cretes are very interesting to me especially, as I know that Ms. Jaye based them off a mixture of two of her favorite cultures: Elves and Native Americans (which, incidentally, are two of my favs too!! probably why I like these little, dragon riding, tree dwelling, full-of-fire characters so much). Learning more about their culture and life is awesome, and I’m left wishing I could dress in their style every day. 😉
Of course, as always, the core of the story centers on Jace and Kyrin, and male and female protagonists of the entire series. By this time, Jace has pretty much excepted his heritage as a rare half-ryrik. He seems happy and at peace in his place within the ever-growing Resistance, though he still hasn’t gotten over his intense fear of heights, which becomes all-too-clear upon his visit to the treetop home of the cretes. Kyrin is also happy and content in the camp, and is now living with her mother and two younger brothers since they joined the Resistance. We get to see quite a bit of the older of these two, Michael, in Exiles, something I was excited about (we’ll be talking some more about that later *hinting wink*).
Now I need to talk about one thing about this book: the romance. As I have mentioned above, the most “advanced” couple in this book would be Trask and Anne. And by “advance”, I mean they’ve been into this relationship for quite a while. Trask has been trying to convince Anne to marry him since book #1, and it’s implied he has been doing it since long before the story even picks up. Anne is, as always, occupied with trying to thwart the unsavory Captain Goler’s attentions towards her (he’s always getting more bold), and at the same time coyly avoid Trask’s frequent hints and proposals. Everyone knows the two love each other very much, and Anne has admitted openly that she wants to one day marry him, but she’s very wise in her decision to wait until things are more settled, possibly until the war is over, to make that a reality. The couple kiss and hold hands a few times over the course of the book, but everything is carefully controlled between the two.
Goler, on the other hand, is not nearly so chivalrous as Trask. He will not give up the outrageous possibility of Anne one day actually paying attention to his advances, and is growing progressively more bold in them, empowered by his growing power from the Emperor and the (supposed) absence of Trask. With no morals to speak of, if a position to force or blackmail Anne into marrying him were to present itself…..?
Next up for your considerations are Jace and Kyrin. Since these two are the main characters of the whole story, it’s quite understandable that their relationship has the most attention. Since deciding how they felt about each other in the previous book, it’s become common knowledge around camp. The two are almost always together (though it’s petty much always been that way), and frequently hold hands, occasionally kiss, and share a dance* at the wedding of two of their fellow rebels, then again at a celebration with the cretes (*think hobbit parties). Although maybe you couldn’t technically say Jace is courting her, pretty much everyone has excepted their eventual marriage….except maybe….Jace?
All that to say this.
Those who know me know I’m not really into romance. I’ve got a small handful of “ships” that I’m loyal to (Kanera from SWR; Eowyn x Faramir from LOTR; to name two), and I’m not against love, marriage, or any of that. But I’m just not super into a lot of “lovey stuff”. That said, I’ve always loved Trask and Anne’s relationship through the Ilyon series, and Jace and Kyrin are so sweet, have done so much for each other, and I just genuinely like them together. They make a fantastic team. That said, Exiles came close to the fine line of too much for me. It’s like any sort of dessert: most normal humans, especially us teens, like some amount of sugar in our food. But there’s a point when it’s just too much sweet. When two characters have a totally appropriate relationship that’s already a tad close to being labeled “sappy”, then it drags out and goes on and on……that’s just no fun for me.
There’s a fine line that can’t be crossed if you still want to enjoy and book, and with every reader it’s different. With Exiles, each person will have to determine for themselves how they feel about it. If you want my opinion, here it is: I thought it was a little outside of what I generally enjoy in a book, but not so much that I did not enjoy the book. (If you want an example of what level I generally enjoy/don’t mind, look to Star Wars: Rebels [yes, I mean Kanera], and Wayne Thomas Batson’s The Berinfell Prophecies. Yes, you’re very quickly gonna see that I am in no way obsessed with romance.)
Ok, sorry for that whole mess, but I felt like it was something I needed to address in this review. Thanks for hanging in there. 🙂
Now for the real fun, and the fulfillment of that hint I gave earlier! 😀
Here’s a character interview I did with Michael Altair, Kyrin’s younger brother and new member of the Resistance! I chose Michael because he’s around 14, so he’s in the range of many of my readers. I felt a lot of connection to him over the course of the book, and I think the readers of The Elven Padawan will too.
Character Interview: Michael Altair
(the bold parts below are my questions, and the regular ones are Michael’s answers 🙂 )
How has it been for you since your family officially joined the Resistance? Do you like living in the camp in the middle of the woods?
It’s been about a year and a half. I do like living in camp. Being in the woods isn’t too much different than it was at home. We just have a lot more people around and have smaller houses. There’s more activity going on, and I like that. Home was kind of boring sometimes, especially when it was just me and Ronny at home with Mother.
What kinds of things do you normally do to help out around camp? Can you give us an idea of a normal day for you?
My mother always has a list of chores for us. Ronny and I are usually sent to help the kids collect wood and kindling for the fires. And Ronny and I take turns getting water from the well. Mother likes to keep us busy. When I’m not doing chores, I like to watch Marcus train his men. I try to do sparring practice, either on my own or with one of my older brothers every day.
How does it feel to have two older siblings (Kyrin and Kaden) who are huge heroes in the Resistance (not to mention your other two brothers)? Do you ever feel like you have to live up to the example they’ve set, or like people are expecting the same from you?
Honestly, I kind of feel left out. I want to be in on things with them. I want to do more than just everyday chores. I want to actually help the Resistance. I don’t think people are expecting the same from me as my siblings. If anything, I feel like my family is trying to keep me out of all that. I know they’re just trying to protect me, but I am just as concerned with winning this war as they are.
How do you feel about Jace? What do you think about him and Kyrin?
He was a little intimidating at first, but I like him now. But all that mushy stuff with him and Kyrin gets old. Sure I’m happy they’re together, but they are always making eyes at each other. It’s sickening after a while.
If you could pick one position or job you’d like to have in the Resistance someday, what would it be?
I am going to be part of the militia just as soon as I turn sixteen. That’s what I’ve been practicing for. That can’t happen soon enough.
To add to all this greatness, Ms. Jaye has done something else she is known to do often alongside the release of her books…
Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed giveaway pack! Prizes include an autographed copy of Exiles, a pewter dragon necklace by treasurecast, and a sword letter opener! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)
Check it out HERE! 😀
Release Blitz Schedule
Thursday, August 10
Friday, August 11
Saturday, August 12
Sunday, August 13
Monday, August 14
Tuesday, August 15
Now, in closing, I have one last gift to all of my wonderful readers who haven’t fallen asleep, died, or removed me from their list of “blogs-I-read” forever as a consequence of this ridiculously long post (which WordPress says is currently clocking in at almost 3,000 words).
Here’s a snippet from The Ilyon Chronicles, book 4: Exiles. Please enjoy. 🙂 ❤
Excerpt from Exiles
On his way to the Altair’s home, he passed Warin and Lenae’s cabin and found Meredith sitting on a bench outside with the little white kitten Warin had given her. Her bottom lip stuck out in a pout, and he paused. She looked up at him, her wide eyes sad.
“What’s wrong?” he asked.
Meredith sighed and dropped her gaze back to the kitten. “I don’t want everyone to go. You were gone so long last time.”
Her voice drew him to sit down beside her, where she looked at him again.
“Will you be gone long this time?”
“I’m afraid so,” Jace said. “It’s a long way to Dorland.”
Meredith’s pout returned full force. “It’s not as fun without Kyrin here to play with me.”
Jace couldn’t help but smile. “Well, you do have Violet to play with now.” He nodded to the kitten, who padded from Meredith’s lap onto his. Stroking the kitten’s downy coat, he leaned a little closer to Meredith. “And I’d be very happy if you played with Tyra sometimes. She gets lonely when we’re gone too.”
Meredith perked up a little. “I can play with her.”
Drawn by her name, Tyra stepped closer to Jace and sniffed Violet curiously. The kitten scooted away, her ears laid flat, and hissed. Tyra took a step back and looked up as if to ask what she’d done wrong. Jace patted her head and handed the disgruntled kitten back to Meredith.
“Will your trip be dangerous?” the girl asked.
“I don’t think so,” Jace told her—unless one counted falling out of giant trees. He shoved the thought away.
“You will always take care of Kyrin, won’t you?”
She fixed him with a serious gaze, and he matched it. “Always.”