Monday, May 26, 2014

Jaye L. Knight - Resistance

Ilyon Chronicles 

By Jaye L. Knight

Available on Amazon

Product Description (from Amazon)

“Don’t you know? Animals like you have no soul.” 

Could God ever love a half-blood all of society looks upon with such fear and disdain? Jace once believed so, but when a tragic loss shatters the only peace he’s ever known, his faith crumbles as the nagging doubts he’s tried to put behind him descend on his grieving heart. With them come the haunting memories of the bloodstained past he longs to forget, but can never escape. 

Taken from home at a young age and raised to serve the emperor, Kyrin Altair lives every day under a dangerous pretense of loyalty. After her unique observation skills and perfect memory place her into direct service to the emperor, Kyrin finds herself in further jeopardy as it becomes increasingly difficult to hide her belief in Elôm, the one true God. 

Following the emperor’s declaration to enforce the worship of false gods under the penalty of death, many lives are endangered. But there are those willing to risk everything to take a stand and offer aid to the persecuted. With their lives traveling paths they never could have imagined, Jace and Kyrin must fight to overcome their own fears and conflicts with society as they become part of the resistance. 

(Christian Fantasy/Clean New Adult/No Magic)

About the Author (from Amazon)

Jaye L. Knight is a 25 year old independent author with a passion for writing Christian fantasy and clean NA fiction. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God's love shines as a light to offer hope.

Jaye is a homeschool graduate and has been penning stories since the age of eight. She was previously published as Molly Evangeline.

O.Scarlett! REVIEW by Kendra

Persecution. When I hear that word I think of either a Historical fiction set in Rome or WWII, maybe a contemporary set in China or the Middle East, perhaps even sci-fi, especially dystopias. Fantasy is certainly not what comes to mind.

I knew when Jaye, who previously wrote under the name Molly Evangeline, announced this series that I would love it. I have enjoyed every single one of her books I have read, and when she contacted me to ask if I wanted to review Resistance, I jumped at the opportunity.

None of my high expectations were disappointed. Instead, they were blown away.

The two main characters were Kyrin and Jace, and I'm not sure which one I preferred. Kyrin has the inability to forget anything – which places her in a position to work directly for the Emperor, and Jace is half ryrik – the most violent race in Ilyon, rumored to be the first to fall from grace. She is faced with keeping her faith in Elóm, which is what God is called in this world, secret, since her country is hostile to it. Jace and Rayad, the man who rescued him from the life as a gladiator, are on the run from the same government for belief in the same Elóm. Jace, however, is struggling with his belief, since it is a commonly held belief that ryriks have no souls, and therefore cannot be saved.

I may love Kyrin a little bit more, however. She's a twin, you see, and she and her brother, Kaden, are one of the best twinsets I've ever read about. They each have the other's back. He's so fiercely protective of her, while she tries her best to keep him out of trouble. I've said it before, but I don't mind saying it again. I love twins.

And then there was the worldbuilding. I loved Dolennar, the world of her Makilien Trilogy, but Ilyon was so fresh and unique. Most worlds, Dolennar included, are built on a Medieval Europe pattern, but Ilyon tastes more of Rome and China, and I don't see nearly enough of that. Instead of a few races that you mostly get to know on a general level, each of the peoples of Ilyon are fresh, new, and varied. Sure, we haven't met all of them, but I can tell that Jaye has put much work into developing them.

Characters and world aside, it was the message, the heart of the story that blew me away. I've read plenty of books about persecution, but very few are set in my favored genre of fantasy. And even fewer tell it with the power and grace that Jaye achieves in this book.

Plot? I've said with her trilogy that she's a master at plot twists, and while there weren't many plot twists in this book (though I'm sure that will change in future installments), this merging of fantasy and persecution left me at complete loss as to how everything might turn out. I don't think I was ever surprised, but there were plenty of times when I couldn't see how Jaye could bring them out of a difficulty. (And the only reason I knew she would was that it's the first book of a six volume series)

I'm at the edge of my seat in anticipation for the next book, but I'm afraid I'll have to wait at least another year for it.

Note: While it is a clean book, and violence is well-handled, the book is marketed towards older teens and those in their lower twenties, and I certainly wouldn't protest that decision. It deals with some pretty tough topics.

Genre/Theme: Fantasy, Christian, Persecution

Reading Level: Mature TEEN - high school to college 
Profanity: NONE - no offensive language 
Sexuality: SUBTLE - hinted, but not explicit. The female “goddess” doesn't wear as much clothing as Kyrin would like her to, and she doesn't let her brother clean that side of the , there are allusions to the non-followers of Elóm doing stuff, but nothing is described. There was some kissing, but between side characters.
Jace is a former gladiator and half ryrik, which is an extremely violent race, and while he tries to suppress his natural instincts, he does get involved in some fights. Also, the Emperor is not beyond using violence to get what he wants.

1 comment:

  1. Great, thorough review, Kendra! Thank you for reviewing the book here and being part of the blog tour. :)



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