The last of a dying breed, a holy warrior must rise up against a growing darkness in Evelium.
The most unlikely of heroes, a lowly itinerant mercenary, Umhra the Peacebreaker is shunned by society for his mongrel half-Orc blood. Desperate to find work for himself and his band of fighters, Umhra agrees to help solve a rash of mysterious disappearances, but uncovers a larger, more insidious plot to overthrow the natural order of Evelium in the process.
As Umhra journeys into the depths of Telsidor’s Keep to search for the missing, he confronts an ancient evil and, after suffering a great loss, turns to the god he disavowed for help.
Compelled to save the kingdom he loves, can he defeat the enemy while protecting his true identity, or must he risk everything?
I received a paperback copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Jeff!
Set on the continent of Evelium, this character driven fantasy follows the fortunes of Umhra, the half-orc. He is something of an underdog and a misfit – used to being treated as less important than other races and not picked for jobs he and his crew, The Bloodbound, would be best suited to. All of the while he has a secret which is shocking and unbelievable to everyone who discovers it.
Sadly Umrha’s band of half orcs come to a sticky end fairly early in the story and he is luckily invited to join The Barrows Pact, a group of mismatched heroes who are set to stop a banished god from returning to Evelium and believe Umhra is the only person capable of succeeding in this task.
I had heard a lot of good things about this book from other book bloggers, particularly those who enjoy playing Dungeons and Dragons and other role-playing games, so I was a little worried that it might not live up to the hype – but I needn’t have been concerned! This story was a lot of fun to read. I enjoyed traveling through the continent of Evelium and getting to know its weird and wonderful inhabitants immensely! A band of half Orcs? Yes please! Undead and a vampire lord? Bring ’em on! A shapeshifting Druid? Fabulous! And these are only a few of the many varied life forms you meet along the way as the Barrows Pact undertake their quest. The many imaginative foes for our heroes to get to grips with reminded me of a Dungeons and Dragons campaign – each one more challenging than the last, leading up to the final Big Bad – the banished God of Fire, Naur, who the Brothers of Resurrection are trying to bring back to Evelium.
The scene-setting in Paladin Unbound is very richly done with well-painted scenery and easy to visualize locations and a thoroughly thought out history/mythology with the God of Fire, Naur, his sister Vaila and their other two brothers who manifest on Evelium as an elk and a dragon.
At 321 printed pages this is quite a short book for the fantasy genre, which made a refreshing change from my recent reads, and once the action kicked in it was hard to put down.
If you are a player of role playing games you will definitely enjoy the style in which Paladin Unbound is written. If you are not a fan of such games, but enjoy fantasy elements such as bands of heroes traveling together on a quest, an unlikely hero, magic users, fantasy battles and imaginative opponents you will surely enjoy reading Paladin Unbound.
Paladin Unbound: Speight, Jeffrey: 9125763608186: Amazon.com: Books
https://www.thebrokenbinding.co.uk/product-page/paladin-unbound-jeffrey-speight (signed bookplate paperback with a bookmark!)
About the Author
Read my Indie Spotlight interview with Jeffrey Speight here.
Jeffrey Speight’s love of fantasy goes back to an early childhood viewing of the cartoon version of The Hobbit, when he first met an unsuspecting halfling that would change Middle Earth forever. Finding his own adventuring party in middle school, Jeff became an avid Dungeons & Dragons player and found a passion for worldbuilding and character creation. While he went on to a successful career as an investor, stories grew in his mind until he could no longer keep them inside. So began his passion for writing. Today, he lives in Connecticut with his wife, three boys (his current adventuring party), three dogs, and a bearded dragon. He has a firmly held belief that elves are cool, but half-orcs are cooler. While he once preferred rangers, he nearly always plays a paladin at the gaming table. Contact Jeff by Email: email@example.com
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2 thoughts on “Paladin Unbound – An Archives of Evelium Tale by Jeffrey Speight”
Great review Sue. Great to hear you enjoyed it. I’m about 75% through and really having a good time with it – as a D&D player it is definitely up my alley!
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Thanks Jonathan! Glad you are enjoying it!