Kings of the Wyld
Their glory days long past, the mercs have grown apart and grown old, fat, drunk - or a combination of the three. Then an ex-bandmate turns up at Clay's door with a plea for help. His daughter Rose is trapped in a city besieged by an ...more
Legit question! To begin with, I actually don't believe there are any especially wise people in this book! It's sort of about people making…moreHeya!
Legit question! To begin with, I actually don't believe there are any especially wise people in this book! It's sort of about people making unwise decisions in the name of friendship, family, and love, so--Wait! ....nope. No wise people. Moving on!
I'd say most of the main characters have a shade of horrible in them: one's a murderer, another a drunk, Gabe is a negligent father (or has been, until now), Clay has a brutally violent nature he can't always suppress. Moog's probably the best of the bunch, if you don't count obsessive fixation and arrested development as flaws =) I certainly didn't go out of my way to make the women worse.
The thing is, KINGS OF THE WYLD is about five male friends, an old mercenary band, that get together after a long retirement. Does it have enough women in the book for my liking? No, it doesn't. That's just not the story I was telling. Will I do better in future books? You're goddamn right I will!
Alas, when your five protagonists are male and it's important to you (in this case, me) to feature women as well, they've gotta be antagonists. I tried to give every 'bad' character, male or female, a sympathetic side, and I'd even argue that Jain (outside of being a bandit) is one of the best and most moral characters in the whole book. Also, one of the most dangerous and deadly characters, Larkspur, is by no means evil. She's just looking after herself and no one else--something I believe is justified by her past.
Minor spoiler: I intentionally tried (by way of Matty's words later in the book) to give Matrick's wife, who had five children with other men, a legitimate reason for doing so. She felt unloved, and cheated of the man she thought she was marrying. While his friends cast blame on her, Matrick knows inside that he's just as shitty a husband as she is a wife.
I like flawed characters. And I like when someone who does something bad has a justifiable (even to them) reason for doing so, and I'd say this applies to both my male and female characters. Although my core 'band' is made up of dudes, I think the female characters that surround them are funny, flawed, adorable, badass, powerful, vulnerable, resilient, capable, and awesome. The story may not be about them, but it would suck without them.
Diversity, inclusion, and representation (especially in the fantasy genre!) are important to me, and if I'm lucky enough to make a career out of writing, it will be a career that works to forward all of those things. Having written a book about five male friends, I can assure you that its sequel, BLOODY ROSE, will feature women far more prominently, though none of them will be (just as none of us are) perfect.
And come to think of it, no one in that book is very wise either.
I hope this addresses your question! Thank you so much for asking it, as I really do appreciate the chance to address this very important topic. (less)
I've signed with Orbit for three books, and though each story is very standalone (different bands in each) there is…moreHi! Thanks for the question!
I've signed with Orbit for three books, and though each story is very standalone (different bands in each) there is nonetheless a complete story arc running through them, in that the events of books 2 and 3 are predicated on what happens in book one.
That said, I'd love to do some offshoot stories with various characters, and very possibly a prequel (or short story collection) featuring Saga someday.
Hope that clears it up! Thanks again for asking.
Imagine this: legendary rock bands that have disbanded, such as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin or Nirvana, come back for one more tour. Now replace the rock bands and concerts with mercenary bands and killing monsters. I won’t go into any details on the music allusions, but it’s ubiquitous throughout the wh ...more
This book freaking rocks! ❤
What can I even say? You can read the tons of glowing reviews about this book. They are all true!
These mercenaries were the it band back in the day. Now they are old, most of them settled down with a kid or kids, and haven't really gotten together in awhile.
Clay has plans with his wife and little girl until Gabriel comes to his door asking for Clay's help. FYI: Clay's little girl, Tally is precious and pretty bad to the bone we find out l ...more
Saga were a world famous band containing five legendary mercenaries who were feared, respected and completely admired. Bards' sang their praises, ladies wanted their babies, and children wanted to emulate them. Essentially, everyone throughout the lands of Grandual knew the tales of this crew's awe-inspiring exploits when they tackled the unbelievable danger ...more
ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
This is such a beautifully crafted adventuring mission that surrounds a charming band of mercenaries, as they travel from town to town, on foot or sky ship, prepping for what is likely to be their last tour. And these towns are filled with, and surrounded by, every type of fantasy creature and monster that you could ever wish for: Centaurs, Treants, Owlbears, Direwolves, Ogres, Goblins, Kobolds, Gorgons, Wyverns, Chime ...more
You know when you've tried a bunch of different soup brands that all have delicious looking labels but taste like shit, and finally you find a soup that tastes as good as it looks? That's how reading this book feels.
This is because I've read Fantasy books where the primary thing people tell me in their recommendation is "It's really funny."
Books like Traitor's Blad ...more
"And so it goes, thought Clay. Life was funny, and fickle, and often cruel. Sometimes the unworthy went on living, while those who deserved better were lost."
This was a buddy read with everyone.
Well, I’ll be a kobold’s cock ring, this book was so incredible. Kings of the Wyld made the inner rocker in me want to go to a heavy metal concert and headbang until I get a headache because I'm hardcore. That's seriously how good this book is. I was meant to be in a 35 year book slump but my slu ...more
The cake is a lie.
Looking at the reviews, I could find just one review under 4 stars rating and I know only one person who didn't fall head over heels in love with this book. So welcome to my verra
I adored KoW for the first 100 pages or so. The feelies every word evoked, the adorable humour, the interesting setting and most of all, ...more
In a year full of impressive fantasy debuts, Kings of The Wyld earned itself a top spot among the greats.
As I have not been gaming for almost two decades now, a lot of the RPG and Final Fantasy references did not click with me. Regardless, I still had an awesome time reading this book. Unlike Ready Player One which I found to be enjoyable mainly because of the 80s pop culture references, ...more
Clay Cooper leads a peaceful and quiet life. He takes some shifts in the City Watch, he drinks a couple of beers in the King's Head, and spends some quality time with his wife and daughter. Or at least he used to. Because right now he's robbed, hungry, on the road, and trying to do the unthinkable; re-unite his old mercenary band called Saga, cross a forest full of ever ...more
"Hit it like you hate it."
I'm convinced that Canada births some of the most gifted Fantasy writers. You've got Steven Erikson, Sebastian de Castell and now, added to that list, is Nicholas Eames. This is, quite possibly, my favorite debut novel. Right behind Traitor's Blade by Sebastian de Castell and Theft of Swor ...more
"Get the boss, this bunch looks like trouble."
'And they do. They do look like trouble, at least until the wizard trips on a hem of his robe.
He stumbles, cursing, and fouls the steps of the others as he falls face-first onto the mud-slick hillside.'
BRILLIANT. So. Damn. Brilliant.
Alright, my mind is all over the place at the moment to write anything coherent so let me wrap this up by saying that if you’re on the fence about reading this little gem - get it together and READ. IT.
Just a little ...more
What’s that, honey? What was I doing while Uncle Gabe was duelling a god with all of civilization at stake? Why, I was wrestling in the muck with an exceptionally tenacious cow.
& it also sets up something that reminded me of a certain horse kick.. ...more
Man, this was so much fun!!
First of all, I love 80s rock. Like, a lot. Seriously, the soundtrack of my childhood consisted largely of Queen, Journey, Styx, Foreigner, and other bands of their ilk. Saturday mornings are still meant for “Your Love” by The Outfield and “Jessie’s Girl” by Rick Springfield.
So, when my friends started gushing about a fantasy novel filled with musical references from one of my favorite eras, and promising that it was funny to boot, I added it to ...more
What a peculiar book. When I started reading “Kings of Wyld” I was a bit distracted, couldn’t connect to the characters and felt like reading a random book, hah even thought of putting it on hold and read some other time. Putting my crappy POV aside, I was surprised as this book is really well written and it feels so. Though the story is not so unexpected or new (It reminded me of Joe Abercrombie), it’s quite quick-paced, it has monsters, peculiar hist ...more
The book reads like a D&D quest and our characters either had the cheat codes or an endless supply of quarters to make it through to the "battle of the bands" and get their names on the high scores list. That said the writing was ...more
This is a year of many great debuts so far and I think it is safe to presume that this will be one of the best, if not the best. This is one the best debuts I have ever read and I can't remember having so much fun since the Lies ...more
I wasn't at all sure what I was going to make of this. I mean, epic fantasy is all great, but I was worried that it was just going to be another cookie-cutter, however well-written.
In fact, it reads like a novel of aging rockers getting their lives out of the gutter to go on one last tour, not only recapturing the time that they were once the best of the best, but going out in a real blaze... just as long ...more
This is an impressive debut which walks a fine line between epic and grimdark fantasy interspersed with humorous elements.
It's a great tale of friendhip between mature characters who are in for something they might be way too old for.
Although there is constant humor and a bunch of more or less well disguised pop-cultu ...more
"But life, Clay knew, didn't work that way. It wasn't a circle; you didn't go round and round again. It was an arc, its course as inexorable as the sun's trek across the sky, destined at its highest, brightest moment to begin its fall"
3.5 Stars: ✰✰✰ . Full review is now up! Let me know what you think =].
Two things before I even write this review: I really try to not be a "contrarian". Meaning that I try to never be that guy who bashes a good book just because everybody else liked it and s ...more
Clay Cooper is an old mercenary/sword for hire who’s been in retirement. He has a nice life with a wife he loves and a daughter he adores. He’s visited by an old friend who used to be in his mercenary band and is told his friend’s daughter is in trouble. She’s trapped in a city that’s under ...more
I always say that I hardly ever give 5 stars to a book straight after finishing it, because I like to be sure, and 5 stars cannot be given lightly (yes, I'm such a pain in the ass sometimes). Well, screw it, screw my former 4 stars, this one gets a 5.
Also, I swear way too much below.
Well, how fucking enjoyable was that!
For the simple reason th ...more
“Time is a circle. History a turning wheel.
And here it is, turning and turning, grinding us all to dust.”
A band. A mercenary band. A great, vicious company of killers.
Fast-forward 19 years: a bunch of gangly limbed old fu*kwits whose place is in a retirement home. Not rummaging through wilderness chasing ghostly heroes of their former selves…
But first – book cover and a nod to an awesome artist called Richard Anderson whose art can be found on various book covers from Brian Staveley's The ...more
Humor can be a tricky beast, as I often say. What works for one reader might not work for another, and what works one day might not work the next. Picking up something labeled “fantasy humor” is therefore always something of a crapshoot because I never know how it’s going to play out, and unfortunately the last couple of years have seen more misses than hits. When I started Kings of the Wyld though, I had a feeling it was ...more
The story was interesting enough. The legendary mercenary band Saga are ...more
Excellent first book from this debut author! A band of mercenary brothers past their prime reunite to save their leader’s daughter (a mercenary herself). While Full of humor and sarcasm, don’t let this book fool you, as it’s full of heartwarming and dark moments in equal measure. A true swashbuckling adventure and a breath of fresh air in a genre that often stagnates with the same old tropes being told again and again. Highly recommend for those that are new to the genre of fantasy as ...more
also, this cover is one of the best covers I’ve ever seen! I kept admiring my paperback 😭
Every time I think about this book I get sad. Ugh! It’s actually finished? Nicholas Eames’ imagination and writing skills have blown me away. Like honestly, I’m in awe. There was never a dull moment in the story, never a time when I felt that things were going slow. Someone was always either being reckless, or stupid, or getting into petty fi ...more
Great debut, great story, great characters, great humor, great foes.
If you are looking for some cool reads, this is definitely the greatest suggestion I have at this specific moment!
Kings of the Wyld is fun. The whole concept, a humorous, musical themed take on aging mercenaries, probably shouldn't have worked. And yet, between witty dialogue and lovable characters, including those picked up along the way, Kings of the Wyld succeeds.
If you try to read this as a serious fantasy book, prepare to be disappointed. There are certainly some emotional moments (which really fall flat and feel forced, early on, as if Ea ...more
|SciFi and Fantasy...: Jan 1: "Kings of the Wyld" Buddy Read||30||38||4 hours, 2 min ago|
|Fantasy Buddy Reads: Kings of the Wyld [Aug 10, 2018]||161||90||Dec 10, 2018 06:38AM|
|/r/Fantasy Discus...: Kings of the Wyld - Final Discussion||1||10||Sep 09, 2018 12:23AM|
|/r/Fantasy Discus...: Kings of the Wyld - Midway Discussion||1||6||Sep 09, 2018 12:23AM|
|/r/Fantasy Discus...: Kings of the Wyld - First Impressions||1||6||Sep 09, 2018 12:22AM|
|Dragons & Jetpacks: Kings of the Wyld - Overall Discussion **Spoilers**||119||162||Jul 19, 2018 02:51AM|
Other books in the series
At his shoulder walks a sorcerer, a cosmic conversationalist. Enemy of the incurable rot, absent chairman of combustive sciences at the university in Oddsford, and the only living soul above the age of eight to believe in owlbears.
Look here at a warrior born, a scion of power and poverty whose purpose is manifold: to shatter shackles, to murder monarchs, and to demonstrate that even the forces of good must sometimes enlist the service of big, bad motherfuckers. His is an ancient soul destined to die young.
And now comes the quiet one, the gentle giant, he who fights his battles with a shield. Stout as the tree that counts its age in aeons, constant as the star that marks true north and shines most brightly on the darkest nights.
A step ahead of these four: our hero. He is the candle burnt down to the stump, the cutting blade grown dull with overuse. But see now the spark in his stride. Behold the glint of steel in his gaze. Who dares to stand between a man such as this and that which he holds dear? He will kill, if he must, to protect it. He will die, if that is what it takes.
“Go get the boss,” says one guardsman to another. “This bunch looks like trouble.”
And they do. They do look like trouble, at least until the wizard trips on the hem of his robe. He stumbles, cursing, and fouls the steps of the others as he falls face-first onto the mud-slick hillside.”