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Publisher's Summary

"Intimate and epic. It compels you to read on." (Evan Winter, author of The Rage of Dragons)

"Villoso's cunning, exciting debut is a new fantasy epic that readers will clamor for." (Library Journal, starred review) 

From "a powerful new voice in fantasy" (Kameron Hurley) comes the tale of a queen who must unite her divided land, even if she's hated by the very people she's trying to protect.

"They called me the Bitch Queen, the she-wolf, because I murdered a man and exiled my king the night before they crowned me." 

Born under the crumbling towers of her kingdom, Queen Talyien was the shining jewel and legacy of the bloody War of the Wolves. It nearly tore her nation apart. But her arranged marriage to the son of a rival clan heralds peace.

However, he suddenly disappears before their reign can begin, and the kingdom is fractured beyond repair.

Years later, he sends a mysterious invitation to meet. Talyien journeys across the sea in hopes of reconciling their past. An assassination attempt quickly dashes those dreams. Stranded in a land she doesn't know, with no idea whom she can trust, Talyien will have to embrace her namesake.

A Wolf of Oren-yaro is not tamed.

"Intricate, intimate, and intensely plotted." (Nicholas Eames, author of Kings of the Wyld)

The Chronicles of the Bitch Queen

The Wolf of Oren-yaro

The Ikessar Falcon

©2019 K. S. Villoso (P)2020 Orbit

Critic Reviews

"Villoso's debut draws on Filipino culture and myths to create a detailed fantasy world and uses the first person narrative of a beleaguered queen to explore a tale of secrets, lies, betrayal, and treason." (Booklist)

"[A] remarkable tale of nonstop tension, action, and betrayal... This excellent work will appeal to all readers of epic fantasy." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

"Readers will be swept in by this strong protagonist and stunning worldbuilding, with a plot full of questions and surprises. Villoso's cunning, exciting debut is a new fantasy epic that readers will clamor for." (Library Journal, starred review)

What listeners say about The Wolf of Oren-Yaro

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

The First Female Character Who Murders and Is Queen But Is Never Strong

Need I say more? Queen Tali fails to become a three dimensional character beyond her relationships with the men around her. The constant threat of her almost being raped is a lovely reoccurring theme. She never has a voice in this book. It was so frustrating that I continued to listen simply because I hoped she would develop later in the story. She doesn’t. Let me save you the time and tell you that it ends with her being just as miserable and undeveloped as she was in the terrible beginning of this book.

78 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Absolutely all the stars.

OOooooohhh boy here we go. If this book isn't on your to-read fantasy list, you're missing out.

Listen. I'm always a bit nervous when I pick up an adult epic fantasy purely because so often, much of it feels inaccessible or hard to follow due to pages and pages of meticulous world building and heaps of muddied prose. Rest assured friends. The Wolf of Oren-Yaro is an easy (although heart-wrenching) read. It's tightly paced with the perfect mixture of intrigue and mystery to keep those pages turning.

Basically prepare for a R I D E.

The story starts when Queen Talyien, our heroine, gets a message from the husband who walked out on her (before the coronation, mind you) (oh, and we don't yet know why). Five years ago, they were married and were SUPPOSED to unite two rival clans, but he left her and their son, and she's hardly heard from him since. Until now. So yeah, he asks her to travel across the sea to meet her, and doesn't say why. Tali, thinking she can try and reconcile things, decides to pack up and go.

And meet him, she does. For like two seconds until an assassination attempt separates them both.

Thus Tali (Queen Talyien) is lost on the streets of a foreign city (alone, because her guards lost her in the chaos). She barely escaped with her life.

With no food, no money, and no one to trust, Tali gets entangled with a con artist (Khine). Khine is cunning, a bit sassy, and SO SMOL ermergersh. But Tali doesn't trust him, so they part ways. But yeah not for long because turns out she can't trust anyone else either, and Khine happens to appear again in a rather ... desperate situation. (Trust me, it's anything but convenient.) (OH and yeah there are some sparks.)

I don't want to say much more, but what follows is a series of wild events that reveal who was REALLY behind the assassination, who betrayed Tali along the way, and even more, what really happened between her and the prince (her husband). We get little pieces of their story along the way, but it isn't until the end that you understand what actually drove them apart.

You guys. The TWISTS. At every turn, I'm thinking 'Ok yeah this is what happened and so-and-so was totally lying' BUT I WAS ALWAYS WRONG. AH. And then the end hits you with these massive reveals that just leave you wanting to pick up the biggest axe and chop everyone to pieces.

Gah. I bawled. I can't even express the amount of emotions that ripped through me during those final chapters.

So yeah. Tali? I freaking adore her. This series is called 'Chronicles of the Bitch Queen' which initially made me wary, because I sometimes have a hard time connecting with characters who just want to cut everyone down. Yeah, yeah, I know everyone loves a 'fierce, mean, unapologetic heroine' - and don't get me wrong, I have before. But I'm just very soft hearted and I have a hard time relating to them. BUT. TALI. You guys. I connected to her so deeply. She isn't heartless by any stretch - if anything, her heart, the love she felt, made me feel for her sooo much. And every bit of vengeance and justice she brings (and WILL bring) will have you screaming her name.

To me that shows the skill of K.S. Villoso and her writing. She knows how to drag you under with the feels and make you crave SO many things. AH.

ALSO KHINE 2020. KHINNEEEEE.

Okay *breathes*

I'm fine.

PS... the audio is fantastic too!

On a last note, I took some time and read the author's story and why she wrote this book the way she did and I highly recommend doing so. She's incredible.

28 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Amateur performance, too breathy, irks.

The story is great, and I would love to pick up the second book to listen to, but the narration on this one is pretty tough to get through. The reader has the wrong intonations constantly, is frustratingly breathy and whispery in the most ridiculous places. It appears to be in an attempt to "act" but this is not the place for it, and even if it was, it was badly done. The story is complex and interesting and I can see it building up into good journey long term, if only I could bring myself to listen to that voice again. Nope.

17 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The narrator did a great job with the pronunciations.

Excellent story! Excellent performance!

I was NOT expecting THAT twist!

I hope the same narrator is used for the sequel!

9 people found this helpful

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A Betrayal-Driven Deeply Personal Fantasy

The pacing is so good and I love Talyien so much. She goes through so many things and just...I hope she gets to rest soon.

4 people found this helpful

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don't waste your time

this book was terrible. The main character was an idiot. there is no character development. the quote" strengths of this character we're almost not existent and then would show back up and then would disappear. she made every wrong decision possible and everyone around her made every wrong decision possible as well. Don't waste your time. I finished it out of spite and I don't want you to have to go through that

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Twisty

I enjoyed the story. There were some really good twists to keep you guessing.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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The title makes you think a wolf is involved....

The Queen is endlessly pursued, by people that want to rape or kill her. She is a wolf but shown in a light of weakness. Disappointing.

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not what i was expecting.

After 300 miles, I never really understood what was happening or why.just a lot of angry people. I listen to audio books while driving tractor trailer overnight. and sometimes I just can't pay as much attention as I would like. I just never found a character that I could identify with.

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Poorly assembled storyline

While the reader is very dramatic in her performance, the story itself is incomplete and childish in the ramblings of the lead character. Incomplete thoughts run rampant throughout, though to be honest, I didn't actually finish the book. Far too frustrating for me, which is rare. I'm usually very patient with storylines.

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Profile Image for Jonny
  • Jonny
  • 10-02-20

Worth the time

Excellent narrator,l. Personalitys of characters and the differentiation really show, without any distracting voices being put on, good pace, and shifts in speed really help convey the moments atmosphere.
Story itself keeps you entertained, sometimes finding yourself frustrated at the way things are happening - just shows how skilled the author is

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-05-21

breathtaking

I am amazed at how long I can be held on the edge of my seat for. Villoso has created a masterclass in using the first person perspective to showcase both plot and world building. the stakes felt real and immediate.