Kingdom of Exiles (The Beast Charmer, #1) by Maxym M. Martineau
Fantastic Beasts meets Assassin's Creed in this epic, gripping fantasy romance from debut author Maxym M. Martineau.
Exiled beast charmer Leena Edenfrell is in deep trouble. Empty pockets forced her to sell her beloved magical beasts on the black market—an offense punishable by death—and now there's a price on her head. With the realm's most talented murderer-for-hire nipping at her heels, Leena makes him an offer he can't refuse: powerful mythical creatures in exchange for her life.
If only it were that simple. Unbeknownst to Leena, the undying ones are bound by magic to complete their contracts, and Noc cannot risk his brotherhood of assassins...not even to save the woman he can no longer live without.
Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym Martineau
The Beast Charmer Series #1
Published June 25th 2019 by Sourcebooks Casablanca Fiction / Romance / Paranormal
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Source: Publisher & NetGalley
My Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Maxym M. Martineau’s KINGDOM OF EXILES an exciting new fantasy-romance featuring a world of exotic-magical beasts.
Filled with adventure, danger, and romance, The Beast Charmer series opener is a delightful and entertaining read from a new debut voice readers will want to be sure to check out further.
A Deadly Bargain Struck
The story opens with Leena Edenfrell, known as a “charmer” on the run with a bounty on her who lands up making a deal with the very assassin who is tasked with bringing her in.
Exiled from her home for a crime she did not commit, Leena takes jobs selling her beloved magical beasts on the black market for coin until she can clear her name.
When a mysterious assassin strikes a deal with her for a mythical creature in exchange for her life, Leena finds herself caught between her duty and her growing feelings for him.
A Debut Author with a Fresh Fantasy Voice
Maxym M. Martineau’s writing is a breath of fresh air in the fantasy-romance genre. Her world of magical beasts, vivid and exotic, is so captivating, that I just wanted to spend the entire book discovering more about them.
The Charmer and her Beasts
Leena’s ability as a “charmer” and her beasts reminded of the concept of what a “familiar” is when reading a paranormal, only we have such a wide array of fantastic creatures, each with a magical value level according to their rarity, abilities, and how hard it is to charm them. There is this wonderful connection—a bond that forms between Leena and her beasts that readers are going to love.
The Un-dead Assassin
The growing attraction between Leena and Noc is definitely something I enjoyed reading as a romance fan. Noc is a mysterious and tormented hero. He is the un-dead leader and mentor to a tightly- knit group of assassins. A terrible curse has been placed upon him and it is a driving factor in the story’s plot and brooding-romantic tension. His undeniable attraction to Leena, and being magically bound to complete his contract or risk his band of brotherhood assassins, make for a tension-filled romance.
In the End
Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym Martineau took me by surprise with its gorgeously rendered world of fantastic beasts. A world of charmers and un-dead assassins. Although, in the beginning, there was some confusion for me with the world building of the Cruor and Charmers, I found myself captivated by it. I would recommend this to fans of fantasy-romance who are looking for a new voice to follow. I will definitely be on the lookout for the release of The Frozen Prince early next year.