Book Review: Paladin (Paladin#1) By Sally Slater

97867

Title: Paladin

Author: Sally Slater

Publication Date: May 14th, 2015

Format: ARC

Brash, cocky, and unbeatable with a sword (well, almost), Sam of Haywood is the most promising Paladin trainee in the kingdom of Thule… and knows it. The only problem is that Sam is really Lady Samantha, daughter of the seventeenth Duke of Haywood, and if her father has his way, she’ll be marrying a Paladin, not becoming one.

But Sam has never held much interest in playing damsel-in-distress, and so she rescues herself from a lifetime of boredom and matrimonial drudgery.  Disguised as a boy, Sam leaves home behind to fight demons-—the most dangerous monsters in Thule—-alongside the kingdom’s elite warriors. Pity that Tristan Lyons, the Paladin assigned to train her, is none other than the hero of her childhood. He hasn’t recognized her–yet–but if he does, he’ll take away her sword and send her packing.

Sam is not the only trainee hiding secrets: Braeden is a half-demon with a dark past that might be unforgivable. Whether he can be trusted is anyone’s guess, including his.

As demons wreak havoc across the land, rebellion stirs in the West, led by a rival faction of warriors.

A war between men is coming, and Sam must pick a side. Will saving the kingdom cost her life–or just her heart?

five stars

**I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you very much! This doesn’t affect the review in any way. My opinions, as always, are my own.**

Plot

In a world where demons exist, Paladins are the people’s protectors. Lady Samantha loves fighting with a sword more than tittering around the court in a dress. She wants to be a Paladin, to avenge the death of her mother, but the Paladins accept no females in their ranks. So she cuts her hair, binds her chest, and sets off to join them. There, Paladin Tristan Lyons is assigned to train her and Braeden, a half-demon. The other Paladins and trainees don’t trust Braeden because of obvious reasons and when demons slip through the wards and attack the fortress in the middle of the night, they blame him. As damage control, the High Commander suggests that Tristan and his trainees leave the training grounds and go to gather more information about the Uriel, a rival faction. Along the journey to uncover who the Uriel really are, they discover that maybe, just maybe, the Paladins aren’t as great as they appear to be.

I first read Paladin while it was on Wattpad. For those who don’t know what Wattpad is, where have you been living ? Wattpad is an online community where ‘non’professional writers post their stories for free. Sometimes, if the book is hugely popular, it gets picked and a newer, more refined version is written. Then it gets published. I absolutely loved the original Paladin and was so happy for Sally when she announced that she’s going to publish it.

Originally, the book had a different prologue but I must say I liked this one a lot more. We got to see her mother and even though I knew that she was going to pass away, I was still in denial; I really didn’t want her to die!

Characters

Sam

Sam, I knight thee “Sam the Kickass Lady”. I love a lady who fights. I love a lady who can use a sword better than a man. I love a lady who is no damsel in distress. We don’t need no men to save us, ladies. We can do the saving ourselves.

“One day I’ll get you to stop trying to protect me.”
Braeden laughed softly. “That’s never going to happen.”
Sam scowled. “Fine,” she said. “Then I’ll just have to protect you back.”

Sam has sass, muscle, and playfulness. Without mincing my words, I freaking love her. She makes you want to look up to her. That’s how great she is.

Braeden

No words can describe how much I Iove Braeden. He’s so strong. And really hot.

In other words, he’s perfect.

Did I mention he is shirtless in more than one scene?? In one scene he’s even down to his underwear. *giggle*. DEAR GOD HOW I SWOON. And he has a dark past. Oh you poor soul let my pet youuuuu. (Braeden no! Stop slapping my hands away!)

If I didn’t like Sam I would’ve taken the sword and stabbed her so Braeden can be mine alone.

#sigh

But I trust Sam to keep my baby safe for me so I guess I can live with that. She’s also going to work on him to make him feel loved ;-).

This is probably my favorite line in the whole book

How could anyone tell this man—this man she would follow to the ends of the earth and back again—that he was undeserving of love?

Tristan

I didn’t particularly like him especially when he went like “you know, Sam would make a good wife. She can wring her hands all day being worried about my royal highness”. Tristan, don’t you know her at all?

But I do get his feelings. He’s been alone for so long that he just wants someone to call home. That broke my heart. And when we knew his story at last, my eyes might have teared up a little bit. I also felt bad for him after Sam and Braeden left. Now he’s alone again 😦 . On the bright side though, I can totally see him and Addie getting together.

Bottom line

If you’ve read my review above, then there is no need for me to say how much I loved this book again. It has all my fav things: kickass female lead (check), hot love interest (check check check), fantasy elements (check), pure epicness (a hundred checks).

Recommended for: lovers of fantasy, kickass female characters, and swoon worthy romance.

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