When the King owns your words, who will own your heart?
Manipulated by a vicious King, Jeremiah is stripped of his identity and forced into a life of silent submission as a Whisperer. Allowed only to speak at the command of the King, one thousand Whisperers must line up in rows and chant their sadistic ruler’s darkest desires. As each evil wish comes true, the King’s power over his impoverished kingdom grows.
When Jeremiah’s fears for the family he left behind are confirmed, he turns in desperation to the most unlikely person for help—the King’s eldest daughter. But is Princess Rose as kind as she is beautiful, or will she lure him into a trap?
To save those dearest to him, Jeremiah has no choice but to put his trust in Rose, whose own life is threatened as her father prepares to clear the path to the throne for his newborn son. Together they embark on a bold plan to overthrow the King and set the Whisperers free.
As love blossoms in this most unlikely place, Jeremiah and Rose must discover how to use the power of the spoken word to conquer more than just the kingdom. They will need to conquer their hearts.
The first book in the spellbinding The Kingdoms of Evernow series, this is a must-read by award-winning author, Heidi Catherine.
Life in the Valley of the Blessed is tough. Scraping by, while the King cares only for his own needs. Jeremiah and his sister Micah never seem to complain, two bright characters we are introduced to straight away. I loved Micah’s character, she reminded me very much of my own daughter, constantly dirty and with a healthy dose of mischief.
The Valley is an interesting setting. You get the feeling it once used to be beautiful, hence blessed. However, years of resources being stripped leaves the land bare and the people hungry. All the while having to look at the palace. The people have a hope to them though, I found myself instantly behind them. Within a couple of chapters I was drawn in to their world.
The King is amassing an Army of whisperers, tricking people into joining his army. Jeremiah is one such whisperer. I found them a very interesting concept. The idea being that if enough of them whisper something to the universe, the universe will grant that wish.
They are also stripped of their identify, everything has to be done in total silence. The only time they are permitted to talk is to grant the King’s wish. There is a high level of fear among the whisperers. It is palpable in the reading. The tension comes through loud and clear.
Let’s start with the King. Oh my goodness! What a hideous character. There was nothing about him to like. His sheer superiority, believing he is a good and kind King. That people should be grateful because he’s chosen to let them live. He infuriated me.
His total opposite is Jeremiah. Trying to do his very best for his family and stay alive in the process. Kind, generous and never looses his identify even though outwardly it is taken from him.
What I really want to talk about is the women. Heidi has given us a cast of strong female characters and I loved it. All playing their part to ensure the greater good. They are kind and generous but with an underlying strength. They were playing the long game and going about it in a subtle, clever manner.
This is a dam good book. I was instantly pulled in and read it in two sittings. I love the way the chapters work and their clever numbering. The Before, The After and the Evernow. The concept of Evernow is a message that resonates in todays busy world.
I feel like it’s also a story of female empowerment and I massively enjoyed that aspect. The World building is great, the pace perfect and the story fabulous. This was my first book by Heidi but it certainly won’t be my last!
My thanks to Rachel for inviting me onto the tour, I received a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
Catherine is an award-winning fantasy author and hopeless romantic.
Her debut novel, The Soulweaver, won Romance Writers of Australia’s Emerald Pro award and was published by Crooked Cat Books as the first book of a trilogy. After being named as a highly commended author in The Hope Prize, Heidi’s story, The Extra Piece, was published by Simon & Schuster in a collection of stories about disadvantage in our community. She was also a finalist in Romance Writers of Australia’s Little Gems competition four times.
She lives in Australia, not able to decide if she prefers Melbourne or the Mornington Peninsula, so shares her time between both places. She is similarly pulled in opposing directions by her two sons and two dogs, remaining thankful she only has one husband.
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