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The Queen's Poisoner (Kingfountain, 1) Hardcover – April 1, 2016

4.5 out of 5 stars 5,586 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Richard III is near-obligatory context for reading about King Severn Argentine; readers less fond of the Bard can refer to Kylo Ren instead. Argentine is the black-garbed, duplicitous, enraged, self-absorbed usurper of the throne of Ceredigion in Wheeler’s well-wrought fantasy setting. He has taken hostage eight-year-old Owen, youngest child of the Duke of Kiskaddon, as surety for the duke’s good conduct. None doubt that the boy is marked for death, but Owen has well-wishers in the labyrinthine palace of Kingfountain, as well as preternatural gifts of focus and analysis. His allies include Ankarette Tryneowy, the titular poisoner in the service of the dowager queen. Wheeler (the Covenant of Muirwood series) develops Owen slowly, taking a long, deep look into a young character and his circumscribed world—an unusual move for a first book in a series. Though Wheeler works very much according to the typical blueprint for high fantasy, the emotional range and insight he convincingly portrays in his child hero make for a political drama that can entice adult and teen audiences alike.

From Booklist

This is the first title in Wheeler’s projected Kingfountain series, about Owen Kiskaddon, initially the eight-year-old son of a traitorous duke being held hostage at the royal court of Ceredigion. Wheeler’s Ceredigion is a close analogue of War of the Roses-era England, with the central differences being that this universe’s Richard III, Severn Argentine, did not fail at his own version of Bosworth and that a mystical fountain is the central religious fixture as well as the source of magical powers for people known as the Fountainblessed. Owen tries to learn the truth about Severn as well as survive at court, relying heavily on the help of a mysterious Fountainblessed woman, the poisoner of the title. While the similar historical sources may make some readers think of Kingfountain as a kinder and gentler Game of Thrones, the novel handles moral ambiguity fairly well and creates a fairly nuanced and sympathetic character in its Richard III analogue. Overall, an enjoyable—if conventional—entry in its genre.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ 47North (April 1, 2016)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 334 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1503953319
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1503953314
  • Lexile measure ‏ : ‎ HL710L
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 15.2 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.5 x 1 x 8.25 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,586 ratings

About the author

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Wall Street Journal bestselling author Jeff Wheeler took an early retirement from his career at Intel in 2014 to write full-time. He is a husband, father of five, and a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Jeff lives in the Rocky Mountains.

To learn more about each of his worlds, his advice for new writers, and which series to start reading first, check out his website! http://www.jeff-wheeler.com/

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
5,586 global ratings

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Violet Barnes
2.0 out of 5 stars Good story, but poorly written - disappointing
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3.0 out of 5 stars Bit of a Gamble
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3.0 out of 5 stars A bit of a mish-mash
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3.0 out of 5 stars One thing I couldn't stand
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 21, 2017
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