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Exile (The Seven Eyes #1)

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  73 ratings  ·  27 reviews
Draken vae Khellian, bastard cousin of the Monoean King, had risen far from his ignominious origins, becoming both a Bowrank Commander and a member of the Crown’s Black Guard. But when he is falsely condemned for the grisly murder of his beloved wife, he is banished from the kingdom and cast upon the distant shore of Akrasia, at the arse-end of the world.

Compared to civili
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published February 5th 2013 by Night Shade Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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(showing 1-30 of 884)
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This was an enjoyable enough fantasy read. It had a decent mix of intrigue, action, romance, and magic.

Draken vae Khellian, bastard cousin of the Monoean King, has just been falsely convicted of the brutal murder of his wife and banished to the far flung kingdom of Akrasia. He soon finds that his father, once a lowly slave in Monea, has history of his own in Akrasia. Akrasia itelf is a bit of a shock to Draken as unlike Monea it is a place rife with magic. Akrasia is also kingdom on the verge o
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

I’ve been wanting to read Exile by Betsy Dornbusch for a while, so I’m glad I was able to finally tick this off my list. Something tells me I might have enjoyed this more if I had read this a few years ago though, before I’ve had more experience reading fantasy fiction under my belt, because then some of its shortcomings might not have been as noticeable for me. It is a good book, but like many reviewers have pointed out,
Fantasy Review Barn

I gladly took this submission when the author suggested it. The blurb offered me a hope for a unique setting, and I was hoping the book offered something a little different as well. I also fully admit I was intrigued knowing the author was from my home state, which shouldn’t affect which books I pick but did.

A strong hook pulled me in early. Protagonist Draken is wrongly accused of the murder of his wife, and we first meet him on a ship “walking the plank” into a new land; a f
I'm a little over half way into this book and read more of it every chance I get. I love the world Dornbusch has created, as well as the characters. The story just gets deeper and deeper with twists and turns that leave me wanting to read more to find out what happens next and what the main characters are going to do!

A thrilling, fast pace read. I can't wait to see more from Ms. Dornbusch.
Seregil of Rhiminee
Originally published at Risingshadow.

Betsy Dornbusch's Exile is the first part of The Seven Eyes fantasy series. The sequel, Emissary, will be published next year.

Before I write more about this novel, I'll have to mention that writing this review is difficult for me, because Exile is both a good and flawed fantasy novel. I'm a bit torn between liking and criticizing this novel. (I'll also briefly mention that I mostly agree with many other reviewers who have reviewed this novel and have pointed
Jul 13, 2013 H. rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: fantasy
This book frustrated the heck out of me. I wanted to like it, because it sounded like a great idea, but after the first few chapters, the writing just became so oblique. It was like the editor went through and chopped out everything but the bare bones of the story -- every iota of context that would explain why everyone suddenly trusted Draken and was giving him things he never even asked for.

I kept reading the book because I was hoping the author would pull the threads together and explain some
(Full review here:

The world-building was sufficient, though not particularly detailed.

A very detailed tapestry of events, but just don’t poke too hard at the image or else you’ll find that many of the threads are pretty weak.

I have to applaud Dornbusch’s ability to take familiar and largely overused plot elements and turn them into something that feels original, to pad the bare bones of the story with enough unique elements that it stands out from the r
I give this 3.5 stars.

I won't give a summary. The one given by Goodreads is accurate.

I enjoyed the story. Good characters and story. Some interesting magic and action. Some nice twists and turns. Kept me up at night reading.

My main complaint is that some things came too easy for the main character, Draken, that shouldn't have. He's dropped in a new land with nothing, and suddenly he just gains assistance instead of suffering and earning the help. People just seem to like him and trust him at tim
Dan Herrick
I love reading fantasy novels, everything from LOTR (yes, I'm a Silmarillion reader) to light reading teen fantasy. I have a lot of room for appreciation of fantasy books, and I can appreciate a book even for just the parts that excite me. There were quite a few in this book that did it for me.

There are some reviews of this book that point out some flaws: things are too easy for the protagonist (I agree), and lack of characterization depth, for example. These flaws are real, but they are only pa
I Am only on page 15 out of 286, but i love it will be one of the books that i can't stop reading. :)

Oh ye! I couldn't stop reading it.
Mckinley Inglis
The plot was a great idea, a mystery murder involving Gods, Moonlings, and other fantastical beings. I think it just need more development in, basically, all areas, so characters, world building, and overall detail. I never felt attached to the characters, and could not fathom how to pronounce some of their names (as with many fantasy novels...). I think the book would have been much better if the pace was slower; I felt that the circumstances under which the character was given, like the most p ...more
Brandon Zarzyczny
My experience with this book was a little different, as my Dad had an emergency that sent him into the hospital, so I started and read most of this book in one long day in waiting rooms. I then finished the book in the next day or so in a hospital room. It was an odd way to read a book, as I usually take around a week to read an average book, instead of ingesting it in one day when my psyche was probably a little messed up. Still, however my experience affected it, I really loved this book. Ther ...more
Full disclosure: I won this in a Goodreads giveaway.

It's very, very rare to come across a truly original entry in the epic fantasy world, these days. Though in some ways I'm not even sure fantasy describes this book. Yes, it's obviously fantasy with magic and different races and such things, but at the same time it doesn't seem to focus on those things. It doesn't have the 'feel' of a typical fantasy book, and to me that's a good thing. Perhaps because it lacks some of the heaviness that many se
Wayne McCoy
The book starts right in on the action, with the main character, Draken, being tossed off a ship into exile in the land of the country he has been fighting against for years. He anticipates his survival rate to be pretty low. His crime was apparently killing his wife, but he knows the truth.

Of course, he doesn't die, and along the way he makes friends and allies with a variety of interesting characters. There are banes loose, which are powerful supernatural creatures, and they may have been loos
Jonathan Paul
Exile by Betsy Dornbusch tells the story of Draken, a half breed of royal and slave blood who is exiled from his kingdom after being accused of the murder of his own wife by the king who happens to be his cousin. The book revolves around Draken’s quest to return back home and avenge the death of his wife and prove himself innocent. Along the way be meets many characters who are of importance to him as they help him come closer and closer to finding out the murderer. After arriving at Akrasia wit ...more
I'll admit that I don't read much epic fantasy, but this story was absorbing and intriguing right form the start. The world is vast and complex, but is revealed gradually as the hero, Draken, travels through the kingdom of Akrasia, neatly named 'the arse-end of the world'. Lots of magic, action and great characters - and although I'm not a big fan of politics and military maneuvering, it was well woven into the story and even my simple brain managed to master it. Fast moving and exciting all the ...more
If you want a book with complicated plots, cast of thousands, or nuanced heroes, look elsewhere. However if you want a very fun adventure yearn with some solid world-building and likeable protagonist, look no further. This was a fun, fun, fun read!
Lauren Bachle
truth: I picked this up off the library shelf because the guy on the cover looks like Tom Hiddleston in Loki make-up.

Once I read the back cover blurb, I decided to go ahead and check it out.

Exile is really well written. It takes place in a compelling and completely fleshed out fantasy world. Having said that, it was a struggle to get through. I just felt like the story should have picked up more, or that I was going to connect more to Draken. I don't quit books though, and am glad to have finish
Michael Haspil
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. It introduced new elements of fantasy rather than the same old elves, dwarves, dragons and orcs. I liked the way magic worked and the world was very well developed. I was a little disappointed that one particular element of Manse magic wasn't explored more thoroughly in the novel, but after all, this is only the First Book of the Seven Eyes. So I anxiously await the sequel.
Season Meyers
I received this book as an ARC from Goodreads Firstreads. The story had a lot going on but I really, really enjoyed this book. The plot had substance without overdoing it. The main characters were strong and flawed at the same time which made it more believable for me. Definitely recommend this one as must read!
Kenny Soward
Loved the mix of characters, especially the Moonlings; love the little folk :) Great interaction between Elena and Drakken and the rest of this crazy cast. Some parts were a little slow due to some complex plotting, but overall a nice first book in the series.
Nov 11, 2012 Liviu marked it as tried-but-not-for-me
very fast moving, kept my interest for 100 pages or so but then it became just too pulpy and without anything special (impressive characters, narrative power) to continue
David Marshall
A perfect example of how not to write a sword and sorcery novel.
Tessa Eger
A little rough in places, but fair. Characters need a little work, too...
Couldn't get into this one. Hated the cover art.
Decent enough book. Not to my liking however.
Julie added it
Oct 04, 2015
Alex Barshop
Alex Barshop marked it as to-read
Sep 26, 2015
Amanda added it
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Betsy Dornbusch is a writer and editor. Her books are Quenched, Quencher, Lost Prince, Archive of Fire, Exile, and Emissary coming in 2015. Her short fiction has appeared in print and online venues such as Sinister Tales, Big Pulp, Story Portal, and Spinetingler, as well as the anthologies Tasty Little Tales, Deadly by the Dozen. UF Manifesto, and Neverland’s Library. She’s been an editor with the ...more
More about Betsy Dornbusch...

Other Books in the Series

The Seven Eyes (2 books)
  • Emissary (The Seven Eyes #2)
Archive of Fire (Sentinel #1) Emissary (The Seven Eyes #2) Emissary: The Second Book of the Seven Eyes Neverland's Library Manifesto UF

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