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Pawns (Wielders of Arantha, #1)
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(Wielders of Arantha #1)

4.60  ·  Rating details ·  50 ratings  ·  35 reviews
Seven hundred years in the future, Earth has been invaded by the Jegg, a powerful alien race. Half of the Terran Confederation has been wiped out.

In a hidden base under the Sahara desert, a team of scientists is working to mount a resistance against the invaders. Their plan is to fit an Earth ship with Jegg folding-space technology and travel to the other side of the galax
Kindle Edition, 404 pages
Published April 20th 2017 by Creativia
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4.60  · 
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 ·  50 ratings  ·  35 reviews

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Creativia, a publisher with a vast range of fantastic authors, is a go-to stop for me each month. I choose at least one new author and often a minimally-read genre (for me) to expand my knowledge and literary exposure. This month, I went with the first book, Pawns, in a three-book fantasy series called The Wielders of Arantha written in 2016 by Patrick Hodges. For those who follow my reviews, I rarely read science-fiction or fantasy because I tend to want to know all the rules of what can and wh ...more
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Let's just start by saying, wowza. Such an incredibly complex and intriguing story.

The story:
There's so much to tell here. It's a story that has an incredible amount of moving parts. There's Maeve and Davin who have escaped tragedy and found themselves stranded on this new planet that is quite a bit more primitive than the one they've come from. There's the society consisting of all women who live in secret. There is the evil dude and his sister who are bent on ruling everything. And at the cen
K.J. McPike
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is an imaginative, fascinating story set in a well-thought-out world and with fully fleshed out characters. It is told from quite a few points of view, which is great for getting into the characters' heads and understanding them on a deeper level. Somehow the author manages to keep the story coherent, easy to follow, and moving forward while switching POVs with virtually every chapter. Major props for that! There is a lot going on, but the storylines intermingle with lots of great twis ...more
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Maeve and her son Davin find themselves stuck on a primitive planet that holds secrets they'll soon uncover. In PAWNS, Patrick Hodges weaves an excellent tale that's full of action and adventure. I loved how the chapters switched POVs in PAWNS. It gives insight to what's really going on with the residents of this planet and there's so many characters for you to fall in love with.

It begins with Maeve who lost her husband in the attack from the Jegg, but she won't stop this mission until it's com
Tom Fallwell
Apr 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Wielders of Arantha is a series that I plan to follow very closely. Book #1, Pawns, is one of the best books I've read in the past few years. It was an engaging and exciting read, and I enjoyed it immensely. The author knows how to pull the reader in with truly wonderful characters that come alive and grab your attention. This is the author's strongest achievement, characters that I, as a reader, actually cared about.

The action is done extremely well. Not too much, not too little. It is intermix
Gina Azzi
May 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An incredible adventure that weaves together several storylines, Wielders of Arantha is one of the best books I’ve read this year! Filled with action, suspense, and romance, mixing primitive societies with future beings, seamlessly blending exciting and suspenseful narratives, Patrick Hodges creates a tremendous world with complex and diverse characters that will pull you in immediately.

When Maeve and Davin arrive on a new planet to search for an energy source, they never anticipate uprooting a
Amalie Jahn
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'm familiar with Hodges contemporary MG work so I was thrilled to check out his latest YA sci-fi, fantasy offering. Could the author pull off this switch?
The answer is unequivocally yes. In fact, he nails it.
Told in rotating POVs, Pawns is the first tightly-woven story in a series about Maeve and son Davin who travel to another planet where a female only society exists (and thrives) in an attempt to save their own world. Kelia her daughter Nyla are two of my favorite "aliens" and what I like ab
Andy Peloquin
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received this book in exchange for an honest review, and I'm very glad I did! This is my first introduction to Sci-Fan and have to say I enjoyed it quite a lot. The blending of magic and technology brings together the two things I love about speculative fiction.
I found this to be a very enjoyable novel, with a solid storyline that kept me reading without losing my interest. There were no parts where the story lagged or got bogged down by unnecessary exposition. Though it took a while to get i
T.L. McDonald
Jul 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I don’t usually read a lot of sci-fi books, but I’m so glad I read this one. It held my interest from the beginning, as Mr. Hodge’s writing has a way of pulling you in, painting a vivid picture of the world created. And what a world it is. Full of elemental magic, intriguing characters who you’ll love and hate, and told from multiple points of view there’s so much to keep you invested and wondering what’s going to happen next when all the different aspects of the story inevitably come together. ...more
G.K. DeRosa
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's like Star Wars meets Avatar in this intergalactic adventure! The author introduces us to a whole new world told in multiple view points with exciting worlds and complex plot twists. What I loved about this book was the strong female characters - Maeve, the entire society of women, and even the evil wielder were all kickass women. This was a great start to this new Sci-Fi series and I'm really interested to see where the author goes from here!
Beth Teliho
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
WHAT DID I JUST READ?? So freaking good! One of the best Sci-Fi books I've read in a very long time. I'm in love with the strong, independent female characters, the worlds, the magic, the complex plot....all of it is top notch. VIVID imagery. Wildly imaginative. Smart. Humorous moments as well as gut wrenching and emotional. Very tense at times! This story will be under my skin for a long time. love love love can't wait for the next one!
Bob Neupert
Jul 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Bring on Book 2

I am heavily into the story and characters of the book. I can't wait to get book 2. I found the characters engaging and the story exciting.
Oct 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Wielders is a book of many voices. Plenty of authors lately have picked up the style of writing through multiple pov's, (most likely inspired by GOT) but few can achieve the proper balance and intrigue to keep the reader involved chapter to chapter. Patrick Hodges does a marvelous job in keeping my attention.
Fantastic worlds, magical abilities, personal struggle and a scope that is greater than just one small world. Wielders has it all. I love the authors ability to get me to connect to the char
L.J. Higgins
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this mash-up of science fiction and fantasy.

Patrick Hodges, has woven a complex but easy to follow tale that switches from various POV’s so the reader can uncover the pieces of this intriguing puzzle as the story unravels.

With so much happening it’s hard to explain the story in its entirety. Maeve and Davin have found themselves on a new planet after escaping an invasion of an alien race that destroyed Earth. They’re on a mission to find a way to defeat the aliens who invaded their home
Lisa Green
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, sci-fi
I would recommend this book to anyone who loves either traditional high fantasy or sci-fi. the world building is beautiful and the text is exceptionally well written. The characters are well developed and stand out while drawing the reader in. The characters and the world were the best part of this book, which says a lot. It was clearly well thought out and planned. There was nothing about the rules of magic or science in this universe that confused me. It all fit together well and in fact, I en ...more
Eric Lahti
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Pawns - Book 1 of The Wielders of Arantha saga has, at its heart, the same kinds of studies of growing up and learning to adapt, but packages it in a sci-fi realm where magic and technology are suddenly thrust together. So, now my opening paragraph makes sense.

Pawns is a unique mixture of sci-fi and fantasy, set on a faraway planet where the rules are different from what our intrepid Earthlings expect. It's a tightly woven story told from multiple points of view and, while it's the first in a se
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: top-ten-author
This fantasy trilogy opener is one of the best "free/near free" books I've read in a very long time. It checked every box. It has a great storyline, fantastic world building and character development, it captured my interest from the opening and held it to the end, and it left me wanting to get right into book two.
It takes place on the planet Elystra, very much like Earth, with one continent and six countries. Earth has been attacked and occupied by the Jegg and a small resistance group has man
C.A. Wilke
Apr 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Some books are fast-paced romps; some are even-paced, methodical grippers; and some are just boring. While Pawns, book 1 of Patrick Hodges’ Wielders of Arantha series is not a rollercoaster-ride of a tale, it’s anything but boring. I suppose, to put it into words, it’s a slow burn that builds to a comfortable, engaging pace. I had a couple minor bones, but they were so minor they barely matter.

For Hodges’ first foray into science fantasy, I think he’s done a pretty damn good job. I very much enj
Cynthia Morgan
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’ll say it straightaway, I’m a Star Trek fan and I rate everything else Sci-Fi by those criteria; however, this is not a negative. It’s a high standard to live up to and Patrick Hodges does just that with this first installment of the Wielders of Arantha series. Not only was the pace well driven, giving you time to get to know the extremely well developed characters and care about what happens to them; it compelled you to keep reading. So hard to put down, this book will stay in your thoughts e ...more
Kirby Howell
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
On the surface, book one of the Wielders of Arantha series is an immense, scifan, space opera, but at its heart, it’s a story about family. Told through multiple POVs, the story follows 3 families on a crash course with each other. The characters are real, the world is vivid, and the prose is solid. I found myself comparing Pawns to Timothy Zahn’s Heir to the Empire, but of course, with a magical, fantasy twist. Patrick Hodges has proven yet again that he knows how to weave a compelling tale. Lo ...more
A.J. Eversley
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I was amazed by the story right from the start, pulled into the action, and characters with depth and purpose. It’s rare to find a story so complex and intertwined without it also being confusing or long winded...Pawns was never that.
I found myself having to read “just one more chapter” so I could find out what happened next. This is a world so well developed and thought out that each and every small detail connects to something bigger and I never saw the twists and turns the story took.
I can’
Sharon Hendricks
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have read Patrick's James Madison books and since this was a bit different, I wasn't sure how I would like it to be honest. It was so different from his other books. But I loved it. The fact that he could change from real life fiction about bullying in the James Madison books and change completely to a fantasy genre was incredible. The story is told very well and I look forward to reading more in the series.
May 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
I forgot to review this book has I read through it so fast! But seriously it is worth the read. The characters fight for freedom, but are troubled by the here and now, not the future. The annoying point of view changing from the main characters was annoying at first, but I could feel that a plot and something bigger was being wove. So I fought on, and was not disappointed.

Careful though the cliff is steep.
Aug 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I never thought someone could blend futuristic sci-fi with traditional epic fantasy, and Mr. Hodges has pulled it off masterfully! What a complex, original world he's created. It's fully realized and immersive, beautifully written, and holds a cast of richly diverse characters. The magic system is well defined and uniquely executed, and the switching POVs made this difficult to put down. Highly recommend to fans of epic fantasy (and those who might love a little fantasy with their sci-fi).
Ellen Buikema
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This first in the Wielders of Arantha series is a wonderful mix of science fiction and fantasy. It is an intriguing tale that pulled me right into the world of Elystra. I found characters to care about, which is important to me. The ending left me wanting more. Patrick Hodges weaves a wonderful story. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was nicely written story about a tribe of women, some of whom have special powers, and the arrival of human aliens. However, there is some frustration to the reader because this was Part 1 of a series and therefore lacked a resolution.
Elisa Ellis
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing

This is not my usual genre, but I really enjoyed reading this creative and unique story with interesting and strong characters. I could not put this book down and look forward to reading the next books in the series.
Kelly Clare
May 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
You start this book wondering how hard science fiction, tribal religion, magic, and armies and castles could possibly be woven together. By the end you know. There are some interesting developments toward the end that will lend themselves to an action-packed sequel.
Elijah Shoemaker
May 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was an incredibly in-depth look at what life could be like on a planet similr to Earth. Patrick Hodges blends fantasy and science fiction together wonderfully on a planet that is seemingly in medieval times, even though this is hundreds of years in the future. He develops many characters intricately and never allows the reader to lose interest. A fantastic read!
Patrick Hodges
May 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
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I guess I am the classic "late bloomer." I had to sit in the front row of the class picture every year in elementary school; I didn't reach my present, permanent height until the year I got my driver's license. It took me a long time to "grow up" mentally, too; I was probably the least goal-oriented person you could ever meet.

I always enjoyed reading books, though I was convinced that I was not, a

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