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Urban Fantasy Review: Chosen by K.F. Breene

Chosen by K.F. Breene (The Warrior Chronicles #1)


Synopsis from Goodreads
It is said that when war threatens the world, one individual will be selected by prophecy to lead the Shadow Warriors out of the Land of Mist and reclaim the freedom which has been stolen.
Shanti has grown up under the constant threat of war. Since she helped her people defeat a raiding party by using a special power, she’s been a hunted woman. Carrying rare abilities and an uncanny fighting aptitude, Shanti is the only hope of salvation for her people. The problem is, she doesn’t believe in her own divinity, and when she flounders, she nearly fails in the duty hanging so heavy on her shoulders.

It seems like any other day when Sanders and his band of misfit boys find a foreign woman clinging to life in the wastelands. Oblivious to the weapon they now have in their possession, they are content to harbor the mysterious woman until she is well enough to continue her journey.

But when the war spreads its arms and lands on her borrowed doorstep, Shanti has no choice but to reveal her secrets, plunging her saviors into danger. If they band with her, they will face certain death. But to trade her to Xandre, the warlord desperate to add her to his war machine, would be to give up their entire way of life.

War is coming. The only choice becomes: Which side do you choose? 

 Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository


* * *
Chosen is strangely compelling, to the point that I know for sure, I'll continue with this series. So, why then I gave it such low rating?

This is like a mash up of genres and ideas, and world-building at best shaky, at worst... World-building, you are drunk! Go home!

Fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal fantasy in one, this book has fight sentences in the best traditions of Kate Daniels and a totally kick ass female warrior. And the style is wry, which tickled me just in the right way. 

Shanti is an extremely strong telepath, hunted by the evil empire (yes, I'm not joking) and in search of some mythical place where she has to go to become chosen and save her people. I'm a little vague on the details and so is the book. Then she gets into a part of the woods totally scorched, finishes all her food supplies, faints from hunger, and gets found by a team of boy scouts who are doing military exercises with their commander to whip them up into shape. Cue Dog Soldiers movie, anyone? Only because it's just as full of sarcasm and gore as this book.

She is brought into this super prosperous, very civilized city-state in the middle of nowhere. It's surrounded by walls and gets attacked by savages all the time. The culture is like 19th century colonial England, and it's very very different from Shanti's own belief into gender equality, sexual freedom and general awesomeness of free spirited, independent women.

She ends up being a sort of a prisoner/guest, takes on a ragtag team of boys and starts teaching them warfare to the uproar of their superiors. Everyone is smartass here, Shanti herself, the Commander, the boys, the doctor. Of course she ends up fighting for the city against its various enemies, and if you disregard confusing world-building and weird slang on new terminology which sneaks up on you at the most inconvenient moments, I think you'll enjoy this book as much as I did.

* * *
Избранница - книга, которая затягивает читателя даже когда понимаешь, что у неё довольно много недостатков. Именно поэтому, несмотря на довольно низкую оценку, я читала её с удовольствием и возьмусь за продолжение.

Слабость сюжета здесь несомненно состоит в построении мира, которое напоминает карточный домик. Это также мешанина различных жанров - фэнтэзи, городского и паранормального фэнтэзи. Однако главная героиня - воин в стиле Кейт Дэниэлс, да и сражения в этой книге описаны божественно. Добавьте к этому стиль повествования, наполненный едким сарказмом, и Избранница с лёгкостью перетянет и вас в свой лагерь.

Шанти-сильнейший телепат, по следам которой следуют солдаты злой империи (да-да, именно так её описывает героиня). Она верит, что она - избраница своего народа, и ей суждено найти мифическое место с союзными её народу племенами, которые она поведёт в войну против империи. На пути туда она вынуждена пройти сквозь погорелый лес, где у неё заканчивается еда и она естественно теряет сознание от голода и усталости. В таком состоянии её находят  молодые скауты, которых командир вывел на военные учения.

Шанти просыпается в маленьком, но очень благополучном городке-государстве с манерами и взглядами на место женщины в обществе сродними Англии 19 века. Откуда этот город взялся и почему он окружён дикарями, которые на него постоянно нападают, сюжет умалчивает. Шанти с её манерами независимой женщины-воина и сексуальной свободой, с её секретами и неизвестным происхождением шокирует городок и попадает под подозрение его военачальника, который считает её шпионкой.

Пока она пытается понять где она находится и куда ей теперь идти, военачальник приставляет к ней отряд злополучных скаутов, чтобы не спускать с неё глаз, а умирающая от скуки Шанти начинает тех муштровать в искусстве ведения боя, превосходящего всё, чему местное искусство ведения войны может их научить. Множество персонажей в этой книге дерзки на язык, начиная от самой Шанти, её скаутов и даже местного доктора, наполненного сарказмом, и читаешь о них с удовольствием.

Вопросов и недоумения под конец этой каши малы остаётся много,  однако впечатления в общем-то положительные. Советую, но очень сдержанно.
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