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The King's Questioner

3.30  ·  Rating details ·  54 ratings  ·  35 reviews
From the author of 'The Midnight Dance' comes an epic YA fantasy featuring royal drama, dark magic, and a secret that could topple a kingdom.

Kalen has been cursed with a gift: he’s a mental picklock, able to access a person’s memories and secrets by touch. His skills make him the perfect questioner to the king, and he spends his days interrogating prisoners of the crown.

Hardcover, 304 pages
Published January 14th 2020 by Swoon Reads
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Average rating 3.30  · 
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faith ✨
Aug 17, 2019 marked it as 2020-publications
ok but like . . . this cover is absolutely atrocious
✨Brithanie Faith✨
3.5/5 stars .5

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

When Kalen; a mental picklock who is able to discover a person's secrets by touch, uncovers a terrifying secret that could potentially destroy the kingdom, he must band together with the prince of said kingdom- and a silver-haired thief named Luna to stop that destruction from occurring. (If you'd like more info- I'd suggest checking out the synopsis, but sometimes less is honestly more! There are a couple of things
Nia •ShadesOfPaper•
Just... nope.
*review to come*

Thank you Macmillan and Swoon Reads for the ARC.
Cindy ✩☽ Savage Queen ♔
Wait, this went from February 2019 to January 2020!? NOooo
Dec 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: a2, january, a4n, swoon-reads, usa, 2019
Magic threatens to tear a kingdom apart in this new fantasy.

Kalen has the magical ability to see other people's memories, hidden or not. The king uses him as an interrogator, ignoring the pain and suffering it inflicts on Kalen. When secrets from the price's past come to light, Kalen sets off with some allies to find the truth.

First of all, it's nice to see a male main character in this kind of novel. It's almost always girls. However, as a novel, this isn't great.

It's a very clever idea. I
Erin Haggerty
Dec 14, 2019 rated it liked it
Alright.... so this book had all the making for a really amazing read..... but it needed more.... off everything. I liked so much about it but it was like some one let the air out of the balloon mid way in its creation. The characters had solid bases and really could have come alive with a little more development. As well as the relationships that formed during the course of the bo0k as well. It was like someone pressed fast forward and while the plot was strong in what it wanted to present.... ...more
*Source* Publisher
*Genre* Young Adult / Fantasy
*Rating* 3.5


The King's Questioner, by Nikki Katz, is the authors follow-up to The Midnight Dance. From all indications, this is a standalone but has avenues where the author can continue the story if she so chooses. Protagonist Kalen is a mental picklock - he can access a person's memories and secrets with a touch. He has the curious ability to unlock hidden doors and uncover secrets hidden away. The king uses him as an interrogator,
rachel ☾
incredibly underdeveloped and forgettable

Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

KarenJo Custodio
Jan 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars

The King’s Questioner by Nikki Katz is a thrilling YA fantasy story filled with adventure, magic, drama, and plenty of thrills that will keep readers enthralled until the very last page.

Kalen has a rare ability that allows him to access someone’s personal memories with a touch. His gift (or curse as he likes to call it) makes him a valuable asset to the king and the perfect questioner to prisoners of the crown. When Kalen discovers a secret that could either destroy or save the kingdom,
Katherine Paschal
More book stuff can be found at

Kalen has a gift (or a curse if you ask him) where he can touch a person and discover their secrets, no matter how well they believe they are locked up. This skill makes him very useful to the king when it comes to interrogating prisoners. When Kalen discovers a secret he was never suppose to know, he sets out on a dangerous mission to save his kingdom and find the truth.

I am a super cover snob and I will admit that I was not
Jan 07, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: completed-arcs
Find this review and more on my blog at Worlds Unlike Our Own .

Thank you to the publisher, Swoon Reads, and Edelweiss for providing me with an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Kalen, who has the gift of seeing people’s memory with a single touch, is the King’s Questioner, and assists in interrogating prisoners for the King. But when Prince Cirrus falls into a coma one day and Kalen goes into his mind to wake him, he comes across a long buried memory that hides a terrible
Jan 15, 2020 rated it liked it
I've always wanted to read The Midnight Dance but you know... too many books, too little time... so I'm aware of Nikki Katz and when the opportunity came to participate in this blog tour, I had little hesitation. The blurb feels like it could be right in my alley even if the cover is somewhat unappealing but I'm one of those who thinks less is more and there was just too many things happening there. Still, I could have enjoyed the story... historical fantasy YA has always been a weakness of ...more
❆Francesca (Mother of Cats) Selina❆
Thank you so much Swoon Reads for providing me a free copy through Edelweiss in exchange of an honest review.

Great premise but the book needed more polish.

The characters felt very two dimensional and overall underdeveloped and I just couldn’t get into them and care about their struggles and adventures.....which is a shame because at times I could glimpse something that would make me think “oh, I want to learn more about you”; characters are the pillars of every story and if they are
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you're a huge fan of fantasy but you're tired of dedicating yourself to huge series or 1000+ books, read this short, fun standalone book.

How do I sum up my feelings for this book? (Plot twist if I don't) Well, basically this book will make you fall in love with an amazing cast of characters. You ship them, you want to murder some of them, you want some of them to just... shut up for a minute. It gives you all the feels.

Then, on top of the characters, you have entered into a gorgeous high
Solid 3/5 stars.

I needed more from this book. The writing style is good and the story is easy to follow along, so I had little issues with that. Most of my problems lie with the characters. Kalen's character is pretty strong, and if anything I wished to only see what lay ahead for his character by the end. In regards to Cirrus and Luna...Let's just say I needed a whole lot more before I consider giving this book a higher rating. I understood their purpose, and we did get to know them a little
Dec 09, 2019 rated it liked it
It hurts me a little to put this at a three. Over all I want to give it 3.5; though lacking in spots of character development and complexity, it was a good read: enjoyable and fun, a lighthearted journey.

Let me break my thoughts down a bit.

I love Kalen’s powers. I like the basic qualities laid out for Kalen, Cirrus, Luna, and Reign. But I agree with other reviewers that they needed a little *more*. A little more humanity, a little more depth.

As for the plot, it was pretty straightforward. I
Jan 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
The King’s Questioner by Nikki Katz (Q and A) is released on January and what will set it apart is what it isn’t. So, let’s get that out of the way before moving on to what it is. What The Kings Questioner is not. It is not an epic, high fantasy that is intense and heavy-handed. This is, at its heart, a briskly paced, quick read. It is a breather between those epic, high-fantasy reads, and a much needed one, at that. Sometimes it is easy to forget how much all the intensity can take a toll of ...more
THE KING'S QUESTIONER was a light, airy and fun standalone fantasy, a perfect palate cleanser and I truly enjoyed it after the many heavy, epic fantasies out there. I just surrendered myself to the storyline and let the plot carry me away. There were secrets, subplots, conspiracies, magic, assassins, intrigue and of course, romance! I loved it.

Kalen was a very likable character as were most of the primary ones. I would have liked to see them a bit more developed but all in all, they were
Jan 13, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, fantasy, ya
Theoretically a fascinating fantasy using the idea of magic mind control abilities.
We have a banished child left to a tortured lonely life because of a prophecy. Prophecies are chancy things at best and the King's actions prove to have been indeed foolish. Personally I felt the king was a despairing, frightened despot. The promise of excitement with Kalen who has the mental ability to unlock the deepest, darkest, hidden secrets, Prince Cirrus whose memories have been tampered with, and the
Jan 06, 2020 rated it liked it
This book had a lot of things going for it in the beginning. A clever premise and likable characters got me invested, but unfortunately it just didn’t feel properly developed. The pacing and plot felt clunky (lots of description of odd unimportant things, rushed descriptions of actually relevant information,) and overall it seemed to suffer from a lot of telling instead of showing.

The author clearly has a great idea here, I just wished it had been developed more fully before publishing. That
Teressa Ferraro
Jan 01, 2020 rated it it was ok
I was provided an ARC by the publisher in return for a fair review. All opinions are my own.

2* read, DNF 50%

This book has an amazing premise with all the right ingredients: a prince with a mysterious secret, a commoner with magic powers, and a dangerous quest. Unfortunately, it fell flat. The book begins by setting the main character, Kalen, and the prince up as rivals, but the animosity falls away so quickly and without comment that it might as well have not been there in the first place. There
Jan 16, 2020 rated it liked it
If you love reading YA kingdom fantasies, you may want to give this one a try!

This book took on the more typical feels that we tend to see within this genre. We find the main characters immersed in a magical, almost historicalworld that quickly swept me up.

I gave it 3 out of 5 stars. It was a very enjoyable read with a fun cast of characters. There could have been more development throughout the story, but I don't think it took much away from the overall experience.

If you are a fan of the
Kristina Aziz
Dec 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I received this book in a Goodreads giveaway.

I wish the cover reflected the main characters instead of three copies of Cirrus. That aside, I feel like there were things unsaid. It was an enjoyable book, surely, and lends itself to a sequel in the future. I would have liked to see more happen with Reign and Luna, but maybe they can get their own books? It's been done, and I'd love to see it done with this universe.
Aug 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you Netgalley for an ARC of this book. This was a pretty quick and easy read. The character's were pretty easy going and not a ton of fuss around them. Things seemed to happen fairly easy for them-some of which did not seem very realistic-but made the story wrap up nicely. The ending did feel vaguely rushed and everything got resolved easily.
Overall, I enjoyed it and was able to read it in a night and it kept me entertained the whole time.
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was ok
Sadly this story suffered from being underdeveloped in my mind. The characters were on the edge of greatness and the story felt the same way. The premise sounded so amazing but the story itself lacked the spark to get off the ground. I wanted to really love this one but it felt like the author was afraid to go that extra step and break out of their shell. I wished that they wouldn't have held anything back.

Go Into This One Knowing: Underdeveloped
Nov 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: abandoned, dnf
DNF 65%

The premise was really interesting and had a lot of potential, but the glaring lack of characterization really killed this one for me. There was a lot of telling instead of showing, and there was absolutely nothing compelling about any of the characters. I can see how it might be appealing to someone who wants a more chill Six of Crows type read, but it was not for me.
Jan 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: edelweiss, fantasy
Even if it's an entertaining read the world building and the characters would need some more developments.
I found the plot enjoyable but the characters are flat and I think some more world building would be necessary.
I think it can be appreciated it you want an easy read.
Many thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
Aug 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this story. Well written and well paced the story draws you in. Kalen is a strong character. I would have liked a bit more depth around Cirrus and Luna. The end felt a bit rushed. It does not end on a cliff hanger but it does leave some room for a sequel novel if the author is so inclined. Overall, I would recommend it.
Sep 03, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
3.5 stars. It was a fast and nice read. It could’ve been fleshed out more (it’s less than 300 pages), however I still liked the four main characters. I believe it’s a standalone, though a window is left cracked open for possible stories in the future.
Kira Brighton
Dec 28, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: most-excited-for
(Showcased in Winter 2020 Top To-Reads)
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