Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite
In a world where slavery is legal, Barloc, a man who has known only fear, violence, and slavery, is sold to Lord Harbor who offers promises of freedom. Barloc begins a thirty-day trial to determine his freedom and becomes more confused as daily events seem completely incongruous with his new owner’s pledge. Smarter than average, Barloc realizes that, regardless of the weirdness of it all, this could be his last best chance for freedom and a better life. Kingdom In Chains is the beginning of award-winning author J.W. Zulauf’s latest young adult fantasy story, and it’s definitely an engrossing read.
Kingdom In Chains aims at the young adult reading audience, but Zulauf’s writing style and language will find a strong readership among adults, too. The story evolves effortlessly as Barloc is confronted with people and situations that mystify and confuse him ... until a situation occurs that clears the air just as war with King Sclavus begins and Barloc finds himself in a completely foreign, but more advantageous situation. Edge of your seat prose, great characterization, realistic events and dialogue are signature indices of great writing, and Mr. Zulauf demonstrates each of these writing characteristics perfectly. These traits, coupled with superb editing and an ending that doesn’t drop you off a steep cliff, make Kingdom In Chains a pleasure to read and the perfect start of a new series that will keep fantasy fans enthralled for months (or years) to come. I’m looking forward to the next installment as I’ve become a fan of J.W. Zulauf!