Book Review: The Fool’s Apprentice by Kelly Hess

foolsapprenticeTitle: The Fool’s Apprentice
Author: Kelly Hess
Genre: YA Fantasy
Age Group: Young Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

In the kingdom of Dragon’s Launch, young Denrikk’s aspirations of becoming a knight are dashed when he is instead apprenticed to the king’s fool. Embarrassed and devastated that his new position will ruin all hopes of winning the hand of the girl he loves–the princess Alendria– Denrikk reluctantly begins training under his new master, Fumbles, the king’s aging fool. He quickly learns, however, that being a fool in Dragon’s Launch is much more than juggling and laughing like a hyena.
But when a shocking murder within the castle walls shakes the palace, all evidence points toward Denrikk. Now, with his new skills, a bit of luck, and the help of some unlikely friends, the fool’s apprentice must race to prove his innocence, all while evading capture.

The Fool’s Apprentice reminded me of Robin Hobb’s Farseer Trilogy and The Fool Trilogy. The books are vastly different, but they both feature a fool as one of the primary characters. I loved Robin Hobb’s series, which I first read as a young child, so I was eager to read another book featuring a rather unconventional main character – the king’s fool.

So Denrikk has aspirations of becoming a knight. Unfortunately those dreams are ruined as he is chosen to be the king’s fool. He’s devastated, as he now believes he’ll never have a chance of winning princess Alendria’s heart. He reluctantly begins his training but soon learns that being the king’s fool means so much more than he thought it would be. When murder occurs within the castle walls and all evidence points toward Denrikk, he must utilize his new skills to prove his innocence.

I really liked Denrikk. His emotions were very realistic. I felt sorry for him at first, but loved seeing him grow and change as a character. The writing was very vivid, and the other managed to paint striking descriptions of the scenes in just a few sentences. I’ve grown ofnd of the world of Dragon’s Launch, and I hope Kelly Hess explores this world further in future books.

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