Cover Image: Asperfell


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Member Reviews

**Thank you Netgalley and publisher for giving me an electronic ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.**

Before I knew it I was halfway through this book! The world building and magic system seemed realistic and reading through Briony's childhood was great. I can't wait for book two, I'm so in love with this world.
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Author #Jamie Thomas is a wonderful inventive fantasy writer.Only the darkest and most dangerous of Mages are sentenced to pass through the gate to Asperfell. Not one has ever returned.Never did Briony dream she might set foot in the otherworldly prison of Asperfell.
This fantasy story is just wonderful.And if you like books that have magic this will be the book for you.I really enjoyed it.
Thank you,
#Netgalley,#Jamie Thomas and #Uproar Books
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I loved the imagery in this! It was definitely a slower read than I'm used to, but it was worth the investment.
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I went in to Asperfell not really sure what to expect and it turned out to be so much more than I had hoped it would be. It’s a fantastic fantasy, full of well developed characters. The story is fast paced but flows well. Overall a very well written story. I’m definitely looking forward to the next book!
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Considering that this is a debut novel, I was pleasantly surprised by how much i enjoyed it. 

Briony is a headstrong spunky female lead,  with the burning desire to gleam knowledge whenever she can. She's compassionate and determined, and i just loved her for our main character.  

The magic system in this was very well done.  We have our Mages, but all with different types of magic, such as Siphons, Blood Mages, Animalists, Naturalists, Necromancers, Orares, etc etc. The different strengths of each magic system was amazing.

I loved the worldbuilding of Asperfell and the concept of it. A prison designed specifically for criminal Mages? And they can never return?? Sounds intense!

I genuinely enjoyed this more than I thought I would it; it was engaging and fun, and I really liked reading about Briony's activities in Asperfell before sh*t hit the fan lol. The romance was meh, I didn't care too muvh for it, but then again I am a reader who prefers NO romance in her fantasies. However, this one was pretty subtle and didn't take away from the plot of the book. 

The ending itself was done well and I love the idea of a sequel coming. 

*I received this Arc from Netgalley in exchange for an honest revie*
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Asperfell by Jamie Thomas is a fantasy novel, set in another world, where people can have different types of magic.  Some of these are more feared than others, like blood magic.  All is fine until the Crown Prince kills the King with his magic, and he is banished through the gate (a magic portal) to Asperfell from where no one has returned.

Briony is our protagonist, and starts the story as a young girl, with her father as an advisor to the King.  She witnesses the Crown Prince being sent through the gate, and is sent away to the country when the Crown Prince's younger brother inherits the throne, and magic users start to be hunted.

I very much enjoyed this book.  It explored the world, both the world and Asperfell. It showed us different types of magic, which I enjoyed seeing how they would affect the world around them. 

The story moves at a good pace, and I wanted to find out what would happen next.  This is the first book in a trilogy, so don't expect a complete ending!

Asperfell was published on 18th February 2020, and is available on  Amazon .   I've found a  link  to where you can search for local bookshops, including independent!

You can follow Jamie Thomas on  Twitter , or through her website .

If you're interested in fantasy books, then here's a  link  to others I've reviewed!

I was given this book for free in return for an unbiased review, so my thanks to NetGalley and to  Uproar books  (the publishers) for this book.
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This book was really fantastic it is a great fantasy story! I went into this not really sure what to expect it seemed old worldly from the description but I was still interested to see what it had to offer. This book was so much more than I hoped for!! The characters and world are very well developed and had a rich natural progression to both. 

It was entertaining fast paced and flowed well. The writing is excellent and I highly recommend it!! 
I will definitely be looking for more from this author.

I received this book from NetGalley for an Honest review.
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I didn't really have anything expectations when I started but overall I enjoyed it.

This quote from the book is probably the best I've read so far 

“Have courage. And no matter how dark the world seems and how much you’d like to darken with it, find whatever light you can wherever you can, and help it grow.” 

“Help it grow, For that is the only way we can defeat the darkness.”
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An interesting little fantasy story! I went into this expecting a more traditional style medieval-inspired fantasy, and while it had those elements, it gave me more than I expected! It was paced well, and everything about the relationships occurred at an appropriate pace and felt really natural. The magic was well developed and interesting. Everything about this worked really well together, and I would highly recommend!
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With strong world-building and just as realistic characters, Jamie Thomas created a novel you will fall in love with. I was a bit sceptical about the ending because of the slow-burn plot and thought there would be no time for a suitable ending, but after that ending, I am sure there will be a sequel; otherwise there would be little reason for such a cliffhanger.
I loved how well-crafted this universe is, how simple it is in some matters and complex in others. The author knew when to let herself get carried away with passion and emotion, and I felt it just as I suppose Jamie Thomas felt when writing this thought-provoking story.

Full review to be published in my blog (March 18):
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Title: Asperfell
By:  Jamie Thomas
Genre: New Adult, SciFi & Fantasy
Published by: Uproar Books
Published on: 18 Feb 2020
Review on Goodreads:

Asperfell is a story about Briony and how her life shifts when the king of her province is murdered. Her father is the Kings adviser, this suddenly means Briony must attend the royal court and will witness her first execution.

Briony has grown up knowing there are those in Tiralaen who have and use magic so it is a shock when slowly it becomes outlawed. People who were once safe are now in the greatest of danger but can Briony help to save them all? 

As a natural rebellious young woman who is not afraid to get her petty coats muddy, Briony is not scared of public opinion, even so that is a lot to ask of a twenty-year-old non magic human. 

Could her father’s friends be about to put her on the track to become a saviour or have they doomed her all together.

It is clear from the beginning that this is a book about persecution of those deemed “Different” and those perceived as a “Threat’’ to the current way of life. 

The civil war erupting in Tiralaen and the possible spread to a world war is indicative of our history. It could be drawn on as the American Civil war which was about race, the Irish civil war which was about Rule and to a degree religion. 

Of course there are many other civil wars which could be drawn on.

I also feel there is a feminist under tone. Why should woman be told what to do or where to go.

I found the characters well-rounded not completely nice nor completely evil, for the most part at least.

The magic and world building were incredibly interesting and not overly intricate or difficult to follow. 

It did muddy the moral compass a bit as those who were in Asperfell because they had committed murder were allowed to walk Asperfell freely and were only committed to the dungeons if they killed once inside Asperfell. There for they had killed both in Tiralaen and Asperfell.

Those only guilty of having magic and had committed no other crime were expected to live among them. So while Asperfell is full of guilty and innocent mages it is only those who reoffend that are punished. Which fails to protect the truly innocent. 

Though over all I liked the character of Prince Enoch I was distressed at the victim blaming in the part where he helped Briony escape her attacker. 

He implied that she would not have needed any help from him or the umbra if she could cast a protection shield. Victim blaming does happen in real life but I feel that it was something that would have changed Briony’s feelings for him and didn’t. This read a little false. I wouldn’t thing Briony the kind of Character to fall for someone who blamed her for nearly being raped. 

Over all I enjoyed the story and found the style of writing, old English, really suited the story. I am looking forward to the second in the trilogy.
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In a world where magic is newly outlawed, mages get sent to Asperfell, a prison in another world in which there is no return. Briony finds herself here when it is revealed that she is a mage herself.
In Asperfell she meets Elyan, the rightful king of the land, banished to Asperfell for killing his father, although he is innocent.
Briony discovers her aptitude is being able to speak to magic, and tries to find a way home.

This book has a very slow start, the first 100 pages have little action that affects the plot. I enjoyed the last 3/4 though.
The characters were good, I liked Briony although she's a little annoying. She's a bit of a princess character, in that she expects someone else to help her at every turn, while violently adament that she's independent. The plot was good, it just needed to get started a bit quicker.
I would read the sequel which is always a good sign!
Thanks to net galley for giving me an ARC.
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I devoured this book. The story itself was similar to other books I have read but that did not deter from how much I enjoyed it. 
The plot intrigued me. Breaking into a prison to save a prince who was banished there. That is all I needed to know. This book has a bit of everything; magic, love, deception, and court politics. 
I did find some parts predicable but overall I would recommend to anyone who loves fantasy with a strong heroine trying to save the day.

4 out of 5 Stars
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I received a digital advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, and I was so excited to read it so thank you Netgalley.

Oh My God. I absolutely loved this book so much! What an amazing debut novel by Jaime Thomas.

I was kind of feeling down after finishing most of my other high fantasy series. This was exactly what I needed!

The book is set in the world of Iluviel. In this world, there are magic users called mages, different classes of mage have different types of magic. Powerful criminal mages are sent through a portal to the prison of Asperfell, never to return. When the heir to the throne supposedly murders his father with his magic, the new king bans magic in the kingdom.

*Spoilers from here*

We follow Briony from the age of 8 up to her twenties. When her family are discovered to be part of a plot against the young king, and Briony discovers she’s a mage, she is sent to Asperfell to find the true heir to the throne.

The medieval-ish writing style was fantastic, it had an authenticity to it that really completed the experience of reading. It really helps to pick up the relatively slow pace of the beginning of the book. Whilst the book is a bit of a slow burner, I loved that it just felt like such a gentle book, but the story was so brilliant.

I loved Elyan, the true heir. He was just such a cool character. I loved his relationship development with Briony. Equally, Thaniel’s character was amazing too! I totally ship him and Briony as a couple 🥰

One of my favourite things for a novel is twists surrounding characters. Asperfell didn’t disappoint, the twist was shocking. I never saw it coming, I totally trusted the character, who will remain nameless.
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Asperfell is the kind of book that you start reading, and you fall into fairly easily, even while your mind goes, I know exactly where this is going. And it goes in those exact. same. places. without deviating. But it doesn't stop you from devouring it anyway.

It pings every single YA trope there is, which may be what makes it (5 stars woot!), but also what breaks it (3 stars eh, I saw that from a mile away). Briony is the feisty, untrained but unquenchable female protagonist who blunders into everything--not quite blindly, at least, but with more faith and hope than her skill and talent warrants. And obviously, she has the one rare magical aptitude that is needed for this time... Then there is the broody, irritable, and unlikeable male protagonist, traitor prince Elyan, who holds deep, dark secrets he can't share with anyone--and is not so bad when he finally smiles.

Add in the classic enemies to lovers and a slight tinge of coming-of-age (or at least growing into responsibility), the semi-medieval setting, court intrigue, and there you have it. Only, Elyan and Briony are actually of legal age (at 28 and 20-ish?), so it's basically aged-up YA. Other than an attempted rape and backstories of abuse, neither of which go into graphic details, it's a very clean read.

Predictability aside, Asperfell is a fun magical romp, with deftly executed twists and tragically crafted backstories that add to the depth of the characters, even if they don't bring anything fresh to the plot. It unfortunately ends on a cliffhanger, because trilogy. So... book 2?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Uproar Books via Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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First I fell in love with the cover then I fell in love with the story.
The world building is amazing, the cast of characters well thought and interesting, the plot flows and you don't want to stop reading.
An excellent and entertaining read, highly recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
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"It is a truth universally acknowledged that a female protagonist who describes a male character as both insufferable and loathsome must kiss him by the end of the book."

This book opens with an author biography in which Jamie Thomas declares her intention to “smash the patriarchy one novel at a time!” I have to assume that she is referring to some future novel, as this one barely so much as flinches in the patriarchy’s direction.
Asperfell is a Young Adult novel which features just about every standard-issue YA fantasy trope possible. From a spunky not-like-other-girls Strong Female Protagonist to a ‘romance’ built entirely upon snarky dialogue and glares, this book has it all. Does the protagonist have special powers? Of course she does! Are her powers even more special than everybody else’s special powers? You betcha! Does she gain access to those powers by being put in a position where she’s about to get raped?  ...Unfortunately, yes.
Even the parts of the plot that can’t be described as just plain tropey are painfully predictable. The stated goal of the protagonist is to escape from Asperfell. When she manages to find time between gardening, attending balls, and glaring at Prince Tall, Dark, and Handsome to actually pursue this goal—she gets stuck trying to figure out a cryptic clue. And by cryptic I of course mean so blindingly obvious she probably should have thought to do it before even being given the clue. Aside from the ‘mystery’ being less complex than a bad Scooby-Doo plot, this novel also features: the main character spending over a third of the book agonizing over not having any special powers (mm-hm), a necromancer who has sworn never to use her powers again (sure), and a kind old mentor who turns out to be evil (gasp!).
It actually saddens me to have to bash this book as much as I am. Somewhere, hidden under the non-romance and predictable plot, there is an actually clever concept that I really want to love. Asperfell as a setting is wonderful. I very much enjoyed the parts of the book where we are just shown how society functions in this magic prison colony. We meet several characters along the way who are great quirky little additions to this world. I laughed out loud at the description of the antics of an odd couple of necromancers whose task is to guard the graveyard!
Regrettably, a highly original cool setting and a good number of characters with potential come together in this book only to be buried underneath a never-ending torrent of YA tropes and a plot consisting of a series of completely predictable ‘twists’. 

Would recommend this book to people who: read the first half of A Game of Thrones and thought ‘I wish this were more like Twilight’ – are intrigued by the premise ‘magical prison colony’ – like their YA tropes played straight
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**I received an electronic ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for honest review.**

Jamie Thomas brings us the first book in a new fantasy series, Asperfell. Asperfell is, first and foremost, a prison for mages. A sentenced mage will walk through the gate to this new world where they remain forever cut off from the world they once knew. Readers follow Briony, a noblewoman whose father is on the privy council to the king. 

When the beloved king is murdered by his son, Elyan, the heir to the throne is sentenced to Asperfell. The second son, Keric, takes the throne and wages war on mages. When Briony is found to be an unregistered mage, she is sent through to Asperfell in a desperate attempt to locate Elyan and bring him back. But no one has ever returned from Asperfell. 

In general, I really enjoyed this book. I love the magic system and the wide variety of options in the elemental-type magic. There is a mystery that runs through the book as well, which Briony and friends must solve. There are some things that I think were meant to be surprising in the resolution of the mystery plotline, but were very clearly foreshadowed and were not surprising in the least. That being said, the execution of the "twist"s was well done and made sense within the world, so I wasn't upset about it. 

I found Elyan to be the most compelling character, but was also very interested in Arlo and Thaniel. I was pleased to find that none of the main characters particularly annoyed me, as there tends to always be a main character in fantasy books that I actively dislike. 

Overall, a solid start to a series with a very clear direction for the sequel. I look forward to reading more by Thomas in the future.
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Asperfell is about Briony, a privileged girl who's family is a part of the King's court. After the King is murdered by his eldest son with magic, his younger son takes over the throne. The eldest son, Elyan is banished to Asperfell - a prison in another world. With a new ruler, a rein of terror begins, targeting mages and anyone who aids them. Briony's father is skeptical of Elyan's guilt and seeks to find the truth. In a tragic turn of events, Briony's family falls from the King's good graces and she ends up being sent to Asperfell to save her family and her kingdom. 

I thought the plot of the book sounded interesting, but I was surprised how much of a page turner this book became. The book went into a lot of detail on how the events during Briony's childhood lead up to the beginnings of a civil war. It didn't seem like there were any plot holes; everything was well laid out without being mundane. Briony is a strong willed and intelligent character, and despite being a bit of an underdog is able to persevere and stand up for herself. There was character development for several of the characters. I am extremely excited to see where this trilogy will go.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
My work and sleep suffered at the hands of this book as I simply could not put it down. It had a little bit of what I would consider a slow start with about 7 chapters of what I can only describe as a back story but there is a reason for all this. I was being impatient as I wanted to know what Briony did to get thrown in mage prison.

This is a well-written book with a different premise and one you will find hard to put down.
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