Series: The Band #1 Genre: Fantasy Rating: 4/5 stars The Overview: -Goodreads

I read “Kings of the Wyld” as part of a Buddy Read with my favorite Goodreads group, Fantasy Buddy Reads (where the author even showed up to say a few gracious words — how cool is that?!). This is one of those unique books that got devoured as soon as it came across my radar. If you have any knowledge of my colossal TBR pile, you know that most things that land on it sit there for 5+ sometimes even 10+ years before it gets read. The premise for “Kings of the Wyld” sounded so interesting, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to read it asap.

The book was hysterical.

And not just mildly amusing, but the kind of funny that still has me laughing at some of the moments several months later. To set the stage, a retired band of mercenaries (who have become old, fat, and in some cases drunk) pull themselves back together to go on a quest. The main character goes reluctantly, and his sardonic attitude towards everything is what gives this book such a strong voice. All of the characters were individualized and funny in their own way (my favorite of which being Arcandius Moog — the gay wizard who’s quite comfortable questing in a onesie, thank you very much), but they all had to put their differences and arguments aside to accomplish their goal. Add to that a ton of nerdy references and you have one hella fun book!

What surprised me the most was not just the funny stuff but how equal of an impact the more serious, deeper moments had on the story. They may have been far between, but the emotional investment I felt was just as strong as for a fantasy without all of the humor. It meant to me that Nicholas Eames was in it to write more than just a fun book — he also succeeded in producing one with substance.

I’ve discovered throughout the years that I am a somewhat impatient reader. There are so many books on my TBR that it becomes increasingly difficult to stop everything and just enjoy each book for the journey it offers. “Kings of the Wyld” was mostly about the journey — the pacing focused more on character building and humor than it did the destination (that is until things got rolling near the end, then it didn’t let up). What I’m trying to say is that “Kings of the Wyld” reinvigorated my passion for discovering new authors, took me out of my carefully laid reading plans, and made me appreciate the journey for the first time in a long while.

Overall, this is going to be a very easy book for me to recommend. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had customers ask me for a funny fantasy book and all I could do was point out two popular authors whose humor didn’t quite work for me (Piers Anthony and Terry Pratchett … masters of their genre, but not works that I could personally stand behind based on my own experience … don’t be mad at me). Finally, I have the start to a killer fantasy with tons of humor and substance — one that I can recommend with confidence. If you’re sick of the same old stuff, or in the mood for a good laugh, “Kings of the Wyld” is my pick for you!

Want more reviews? Check out my website at www.NikiHawkes.com

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