Saturday, 23 April 2022

[MPOV] The Tale of the Hostage Prince (Absolution #1.5)

My rating: 5/5
Goodreads rating: 4.20/5
Published: April 14th, 2022
Author: Anna Tan
Genre: fantasy, magical, historical fiction
Yosua wears an uneasy crown. Although he is now Raja of Bayangan, he still longs for the land of his birth where everything was much simpler…and less deadly.

But peace doesn’t come easily, not for a twenty-year-old servant playacting at being king.

With his parents brutally murdered and his uncle bent on revenge, Yosua must decide where his loyalties truly lie. With his only remaining relative and the kingdom he has claimed? Or with his best friend Mikal and the sultanate that raised him as a hostage?
I'm glad to be given the opportunity to read and review this awesome novel! Unfortunately I took a while to complete it as work and family got in the way, as usual...

After reading the first book, Amok, I was hoping to read from Yosua's point of view as he seemed like an underdog, someone less favourable since he was born and raised as a servant but is now the king! It did intrigued me on how he would behaved and managed Bayangan, whether his people would give him their full support or otherwise since his religion and belief are Mahan and not Bayangan. 

Like a rags to riches story, Yosua is now the king of Bayangan but he is having an identity crisis due to his upbringing as a Mahan. When his parents were killed, he sought his Uncle's help to find the killers and also assistance to rule Bayangan. However it was an unwise choice as his Uncle turned on him and framed Yosua as a traitor instead, ousted him to be left for dead in the middle of the sea. As luck would have it, Yosua's boat reached Mahan soil and Mikal gladly welcomed him as his esteemed guest.

Was it luck or was it Kudus' blessing that brought Yosua to Maha? Yosua has to embrace his beliefs and be true to himself, as how he was brought up by his parents. He has to also decide on his next course of action as he slowly realized his Uncle's true colours. With the help of his loyal supporters, he gained the kingdom's trust and revealed his Uncle's unworthiness to the whole of Bayangan.

I truly enjoyed how the author build this imaginary world and made it sounds so real! I am honestly a fan and follower of this Absolution series and I can't wait for the next chapter on Mikal! This is definitely a breath of fresh air, unlike other conventional fantasy fiction and the localized content is a plus for me! Even though it's historical, the context is still relevant and current. The ending was expected but it was tastily done and I can't wait to catch the next Absolution especially after reading the epilogue!

If you are interested in this series or other books by Anna Tan, you can check out the author's website:

My sincere thanks the author and publisher again for both e-ARC and ARC! I truly apologize for the delay in finishing and reviewing this. I truly loved the beautiful cover art!

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