***Note: I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.***All the King's-Men (The Yellow Hoods, #3) by Adam Dreece
Series: The Yellow Hoods #3
Genres: fairy tale, fantasy, science fiction, steampunk
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More than a hundred years ago, a king declared that all geniuses, scientists and inventors were abominations, save for those willing to become his Conventioneers. His edict spread like wildfire through the kingdoms, and drove the hunted into the arms of the secret societies, the Tub and the Fare.
Decades later, having taken control of the remains of the crushed Fare, a young Marcus Pieman follows up on rumors of a homeless, teenage Abominator in his city. When the scared Nikolas Klaus looked up at Marcus for the first time, a tremendous bond was forged. But has Nikolas been part of Marcus’ plans from the beginning? And has Marcus been a pawn of the original Fare the entire time?
A betrayal leads Tee to a showdown with her greatest foe. Who breaks and who lays bleeding in the middle of nowhere?
And Mounira learns the truth about the once great inventor, Christophe Creangle.
Just a quick reminder. This is the third book in the Yellow Hoods series. These books cannot be read out of order or as standalones. Each one depends on the previous book. If you haven’t read the first book, Along Came a Wolf, then head on over to read the review then go buy it. You won’t regret it.
As with most series where I reviewed the previous books years ago, I sat and re-read the first two books before reading All the King’s-Men. I was quickly captivated by the series all over again. The blend of fairy tales coming together in a steampunk universe is fun. Mr. Dreece did a remarkable job intertwining the two. It was also fun to watch as a steampunk world begins rather than all of the inventions being present already.
Tee, Elly, and Richie are the Yellow Hoods. It started off merely as the trio having matching cloaks to help fuel their imaginative play. However, after they are faced with their first challenge, the cloaks take on an entirely new meaning. They are seen as a group carefully trained and in service to the Tub, a secret organization to help protect inventors from a king who didn’t want anyone smarter than him.
All the King’s-Men felt more like a connecting book. Each book builds off of the previous book in such a way they could almost be merged into a single novel. However, each successive book gets longer, so that would make for one hefty tome. Also, in this book, the characters are split up with a lot of new characters being introduced. Add in quite a few kingdom names and I’ll admit I became confused. Part of that could very well stem from the fact I read books on my Kindle. It made it difficult to be able to bounce back to the map provided at the beginning of the book. (I know, use the bookmark function, but I have a love/hate relationship with it.) So definitely take the time to study the map and take into account the relationship of where the countries are located. You’re going to need it.
With the addition of each new character, and keeping in mind the previous trials the Yellow Hoods have faced, I became quite suspicious and paranoid. Is this new character good or bad? Throughout this book, the reader is left wondering.
This book contains a lot of subplots intertwining with the over all plot. It’s fairly impressive how Mr. Dreece keeps them all straight and moving towards a common goal.
All the King’s-Men also started taking on a darker tone. It retained necessary moments of humor, but the reader will definitely recognize the characters are headed towards even darker times. Even at over 300 pages, this book didn’t feel quite finished. Reading straight through from book one to book four, it’s easy to see that All the King’s-Men is a bridge book. As such, it does end on a cliff hanger. However, the fourth book is available, so it’s easy to grab it and continue the journey with the Yellow Hoods. Which I’ll admit I did exactly that before writing this review. I couldn’t wait to see what happened next, so kept reading.
While this series is definitely written at a middle grade level, I’d recommend them to anyone no matter their age. With clean language throughout and no sexual overtones, it makes for a refreshing read.