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Publisher's Summary

The common people have become the currency, outlaws have shifted to mercenaries, and freedom is no more than a thought of the past.

Fear, violence, slavery - throughout his adult life, Barloc has known no other way.

A quarter of a century has passed since King Sclavus decreed slavery legal in the Kingdom of Kuldaire, certain it was the only way to keep the economy strong. He created alliances with the wealthy ruling class and cast the common folk into chains. A handful of rebellions rose, but fell almost as quickly as they began, and the concepts of freedom and peace became dusty relics of the past, a nearly forgotten dream.

When Barloc is sold to Lord Harbor, his new owner offers queer promises of freedom, promises only King Sclavus can honor after a 30-day trial. Barloc, as someone who has lost everything, or who never had anything of his own to begin with, is forced to question everything around him as he embarks on this new trial.

Whom can he trust? Why has he been selected and thrown into this strange new setting? What happened to just being a slave? How can life be any different from the only way he’s ever known? What is freedom, and at what cost?

This is Barloc’s chance - perhaps his last chance - to once and for all cast off the chains that bind him. And maybe, just maybe, he can bring others to freedom with him.

Evolved Publishing presents the much-anticipated first book in a YA fantasy adventure series unlike any other, from a multiple award-winning author.

Other Books by J.W. Zulauf:  

  • The Underground Princess (The Balderdash Saga, Book 1)
  • The Prince's Plight (The Balderdash Saga, Book 2)
  • The Shaman's Salvation (The Balderdash Saga, Book 3)
  • The Balderdash Saga - Special Edition
©2017 Evolved Publishing LLC (P)2017 Evolved Publishing LLC

What listeners say about Kingdom in Chains

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A different book for sure.

Kingdom in Chains is a very different book for sure. I listened to the audiobook, which I believe helped a lot in my enjoyment. Even though I didn't end up loving this book, I very much appreciated some of the choices the author made.

Firstly, this is a slow-paced book that focuses a lot on characters rather than action. Personally, I'm just fine with that but the lack of direction plot-wise in this book did bother me. What I mean is, for very long there wasn't a goal or a purpose the story was heading towards. There's page after page of the main character simply observing his surroundings rather than acting in them. And I know that he is technically a slave, so not so much of freedom, but I have read books with slaves before that weren't so passive. It may be a personal issue but I like a story that has a purpose from the beginning, otherwise, I feel like there's no point reading it in the first place.

With all of the above been said, I did find some of the things the author did, brilliant. In so many books we have brave, fearless characters that rush into battle, determined to win. Not in this book. Here we see the actual cruelty of battles and the fear the people feel. There were some intense moments that made me uncomfortable while reading.

As for the narration part, I think the narrator did a great job. He gave distinct voices to the characters and as I said before, he made the reading experience better and the slower parts of the book were still enjoyable to listen to.

Even if I found the story a little mediocre, I believe there's still value in this book and of course, the audio version is very good. People that enjoy more of a slow burn type of stories, could enjoy this one as well.

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A story of a slave's journey to freedom

Kingdom in Chains is an interesting story about a slave's journey to freedom. The story takes place in a well developed fantasy kingdom that feels like something from Medieval history.

The narrator of the audiobook does a good job with the story.

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Lots of action

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Let me start by saying that this isn't a genre I normally read. I found myself pleasantly surprised by the immediate action and compelling story. Barloc is an interesting character who finds himself stuck in the worst of circumstances. I thought about this book when I wasn't reading it, and this is the type of book that could be turned into a movie or TV show. I give it 4.5 stars and look forward to the next one. 

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Finally, something different.

This was a quick listen for me. While I’ll admit the narrator is not my favorite, the story is well written. I love a good traditional fantasy or supernatural with obvious storylines and endings but this was quite refreshing in its originality. It is different and unique. I would recommend it to all book lovers regardless of favorite genres. Well done Mr. Zulauf, can’t wait to read what comes next.