Book Review and Giveaway: Darkbeast by Morgan Keyes

Do not forget to read to the bottom of the review to find out about the book giveaway!

Due to slow response I have extended the giveaway until Friday September 21! I want everyone to have a chance to win this book.

Darkbeast by Morgan Keyes is a fantasy novel for children, from around age ten through high school. Keara is about to turn twelve, and in her world this means it is time for her to turn her back on her childhood and kill the darkbeast, an animal dedicated to taking her failings and helping her become a better person. However, unlike most children who are eager to destroy their darkbeast, Keara loves the crow named Caw.  Instead of follow the laws of the land Keara flees, following the Travelers who entertained her village days ago, in hopes of saving herself and Caw. After breaking the law, and offending the gods, Keara can only try to stay with the Travelers and hope no one discovers her dark secret.

Darkbeast is a great fantasy story, one that felt both new and familiar to me as I read. I do not mean familiar in a bad way, but like coming home to a style and pace that reminded me of the books I read as a child and young adult. Discovering Keara's world and walking with her in her troubles reminded me of my first journeys into the lands of Pern or Narnia.

Keara's world is well built, and full of religious laws and corruption. A world where failing to fall into step could mean a visit with the inquisitors, who seem to enjoy their job or punishing the lost a little too much. Keara is a girl that feels very real, she has faced hardship but still maintains a sense of innocence that is charming. She seemed very real to me, a good combination of independence and confusion that captures the true conflicts of anyone standing on that cusp of childhood to adulthood. At no point was I bored, or felt like Keara was truly safe. The ending was unexpected and offered enough of a conclusion for me to feel satisfied, but enough interest in the characters to hope there is a sequel.

I really enjoyed Darkbeast, and was honestly surprised at the ending, which seems hard to do these days. I highly recommend it to readers from age ten and up. I sincerely hope that a sequel is planned, and that I do not have to wait too long to get my hands on it if or when it comes out!

Due to how much I enjoyed this book, I want to share it! I have a copy from Morgan Keyes that I would like to pass on to one lucky reader. How can you win? Simply reply to this post with your favorite fantasy book or world. It could be Narnia, Discworld, Pern, or any other fantasy realm that you love or remember fondly. If you want an extra chance to win you can share this post via Facebook or Twitter, but do not forget to come back and tell me about it so I can put your name in the drawing the extra time. A random winner will be chosen and contacted on Saturday.

Due to slow response I have extended the giveaway until Friday September 21! I want everyone to have a chance to win this book.
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