Exiled: Book One of the Never Chronicles

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781936909407
  • Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group, LLC
  • Publication date: 4/28/2012
  • Pages: 312
  • Lexile: 780L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

J. R. Wagner was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania, during a blizzard. The snow made travel by car impossible, so his father called an ambulance when his mother went into labor. The ambulance became stuck at the bottom of their home's driveway, prompting the dispatch of a fire truck, which towed the ambulance to the hospital where he was born.

Maybe it was this experience that destined J.R. to love adventure. A competitive cyclist, triathlete, mountain biker, and adventure racer, he once received a medal for saving a woman's life during the kayaking section of an adventure race. To keep him "grounded," J.R. helps run his late father's Downingtown, Pennsylvania, floor-covering business.

J.R. drafted his first story, a sequel to Return of the Jedi, when he was ten years old. A self-proclaimed Star Wars geek, he had lofty aspirations of working with George Lucas on filming the project. In 1990, he began filming his version of The Lord of the Rings in his parents' basement, but the plug was pulled after he nearly burned down the house. Since then, J.R. has written two full-length screenplays and a thriller novel.

After graduating with a kinesiology degree from Arizona State University, J.R. returned to Pennsylvania, where his creative fires were re-stoked by his two beautiful daughters.

J.R. considers his wife, Lisa, his muse. He began writing Exiled while they were vacationing in Maine.

J. R. Wagner was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania, during a blizzard. The snow made travel by car impossible, so his father called an ambulance when his mother went into labor. The ambulance became stuck at the bottom of their home's driveway, prompting the dispatch of a fire truck, which towed the ambulance to the hospital where he was born.

Maybe it was this experience that destined J.R. to love adventure. A competitive cyclist, triathlete, mountain biker, and adventure racer, he once received a medal for saving a woman's life during the kayaking section of an adventure race. To keep him "grounded," J.R. helps run his late father's Downingtown, Pennsylvania, floor-covering business.

J.R. drafted his first story, a sequel to Return of the Jedi, when he was ten years old. A self-proclaimed Star Wars geek, he had lofty aspirations of working with George Lucas on filming the project. In 1990, he began filming his version of The Lord of the Rings in his parents' basement, but the plug was pulled after he nearly burned down the house. Since then, J.R. has written two full-length screenplays and a thriller novel.

After graduating with a kinesiology degree from Arizona State University, J.R. returned to Pennsylvania, where his creative fires were re-stoked by his two beautiful daughters.

J.R. considers his wife, Lisa, his muse. He began writing Exiled while they were vacationing in Maine.

J. R. Wagner was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania, during a blizzard. The snow made travel by car impossible, so his father called an ambulance when his mother went into labor. The ambulance became stuck at the bottom of their home's driveway, prompting the dispatch of a fire truck, which towed the ambulance to the hospital where he was born.

Maybe it was this experience that destined J.R. to love adventure. A competitive cyclist, triathlete, mountain biker, and adventure racer, he once received a medal for saving a woman's life during the kayaking section of an adventure race. To keep him "grounded," J.R. helps run his late father's Downingtown, Pennsylvania, floor-covering business.

J.R. drafted his first story, a sequel to Return of the Jedi, when he was ten years old. A self-proclaimed Star Wars geek, he had lofty aspirations of working with George Lucas on filming the project. In 1990, he began filming his version of The Lord of the Rings in his parents' basement, but the plug was pulled after he nearly burned down the house. Since then, J.R. has written two full-length screenplays and a thriller novel.

After graduating with a kinesiology degree from Arizona State University, J.R. returned to Pennsylvania, where his creative fires were re-stoked by his two beautiful daughters.

J.R. considers his wife, Lisa, his muse. He began writing Exiled while they were vacationing in Maine.

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Read an Excerpt

EXILED


By J. R. WAGNER

Live Oak Book Company

Copyright © 2012 Joshua R. Wagner
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-936909-40-7


Chapter One

The Hearing

September 1898, South America James, age sixteen

Two men walked along a flagstone path. The drawn face of the taller was partly concealed by his midnight-black, shoulder-length hair. The deep-blue robes he wore did little to conceal his lean build. With every word he spoke, striations in his jaw muscles contracted and relaxed. Despite being in his midteens, his concerned expression and the weariness in his eyes gave him the look of a much older man.

To his left strode a man who looked as if he lacked the strength to stand, let alone keep the pace at which he currently moved. He was bent over a rickety-looking wooden cane that threatened to break every time the man's weight shifted, bowing the shaft slightly. His white hair was marbled with streaks of black—the last vestiges of his more youthful days. He wore purple robes beneath which were wide shoulders and a well-fed midsection pulled at the clasps. His face was calm.

The path appeared endless. Dark moss grew in the joints between stones, softening the men's steps. It was lined with rectangular columns that reached just above the taller man's head. To the right of the path, a crimson sun cast long shadows from each column and spilled blood-red light through each opening.

They continued walking and conversing as the sun fell toward the horizon. Just as the last rays of light dipped behind the trees, tureens mounted on the columns ignited into orange flames. The pair stopped as they reached a massive staircase. Torches flickered in the breeze, flanking the steps that appeared to stretch to infinity. The boy turned to his elder.

"So it is to be in the upper chambers?"

"No need for concern, James. Mind games are standard practice among the politically well-connected when attempting to make a point. They want you to be afraid. They want you to be intimidated," said the older man.

He paused a moment, took a deep breath, and turned to look up at his companion. "Are you afraid, James?"

"No."

"Remember, it is they who are afraid. You intimidate them. That is why we are here. The rest is just political smoke and mirrors on both sides to grasp what little power they can. They are desperate. Speak cautiously. Desperation will push reasonable men to say and do unreasonable things."

Without interrupting his train of thought, the elder man began his ascent. James followed quietly.

"Understand the question and reply. Never speak from emotion. Speak only from fact. Truth will reveal you for who you are. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Master Ammoncourt."

"James, I cannot overemphasize the importance of remaining calm and emotionless. You have a tendency to react without analysis. But do not lament. Many men who've seen more turns than even Akil haven't mastered this technique. Everyone's in such a bloody hurry to say what they want to say that they don't take the time to consider if they should actually say it. The years of putting some thought into a conversation have long passed," said Ammoncourt.

He looked over at James as they climbed the stairs. James's brow was furrowed, forcing a vein in his forehead to pulse beneath his skin. His hands were clenched into fists. Ammoncourt stopped suddenly. James, consumed by his current thoughts, continued up the stairs.

"James," Ammoncourt said calmly.

James stopped and looked back at Ammoncourt, his hands immediately relaxed.

"I do not intend to take another step until you've eliminated this turmoil from your mind. You must control your anger. While you may find it amusing that you've developed a reputation for your fits of rage, I assure you it is only a weakness. One that will be exploited by your enemies as often as possible. Now, calm yourself."

James closed his eyes and took several deep breaths, exhaling the tension from his body. Ammoncourt raised a concerned eyebrow as James looked down at him with a reassuring expression.

"No matter how absurd or unjust the questions become—and you can assure yourself they will digress into absurdity—you must remain calm."

James took another breath. He imagined his emotions expelling from his lungs with his last breath, as Ammoncourt had taught him. His mind felt sharp and clear.

"The boy masters what took the rest of us thrice the time, yet he cannot control his own emotions," Ammoncourt muttered to himself.

James gave a single nod as a breath escaped his lungs. The pair continued up the stairs in silence. After climbing hundreds of steps, the men finally reached the apex.

Two sentries cloaked in white stood on either side of an archway. Both wore helms of silver that masked their identities. Neither moved as James and Ammoncourt passed into the darkened archway. James had to duck slightly to clear the curve of the arch. The pair walked through a darkened tunnel toward the light beyond.

Near the end of the tunnel, Ammoncourt muttered tersely, "Listen, analyze, respond. And remember the primer incantation!"

James took several more calming breaths, then followed Ammoncourt into the upper chambers. The room was enormous. The floor was one large piece of polished emerald granite. It stretched in an oval to an identical archway at the opposite end of the chambers. In the center of the chamber stood a stone lectern. On it sat a large old book.

James kept his gaze forward as they walked toward the lectern, but he couldn't help noticing that the perimeter was lined with more guards in white cloaks. The men stopped within arm's length of the lectern. James concentrated on the archway at the opposite end of the room. He repeated the primer incantation as they waited, fighting the emotions that pressed upon his mind to free themselves. Hustasunetik.

After a moment of standing in silence, a sound resonated in the chamber. Despite Ammoncourt's instruction not to react, James turned his head toward the origin of the sound. He thought he heard a consternating grunt from Ammoncourt. He had violated his master's instructions before the hearing had even begun.

The sound echoed through the chamber again. The second time, James did not react. He knew what it was. The guards surrounding the chamber were each armed with long-handled steel axes. The blades were tall and slender, unlike standard fighting axes. They were rumored to slice through oak as easily as a man's throat. The never-dulling blades were one of many weapons carried by the guards.

Again the handles fell to the floor. James could feel the impact in his chest. The tempo increased. Boom, boom, boom. Flames erupted around the archway. The pounding stopped abruptly. Three men walked briskly beneath the flames toward the lectern. The first, smaller than the others, wore white robes with crimson embroidery that distinguished him from the guards. The pair behind wore blood-red robes, their faces shadowed by hoods.

As the man in white reached the lectern, the guards surrounding the chamber gave one final concussion that echoed for minutes. Boom. The man in white raised his right hand as if quieting an applauding crowd.

"We hear the testimony of James Lochlan Stuart IV in defense against charges brought forth by the council. Are all present whom we require?"

Glowing orbs illuminated, revealing a previously blackened area of seating surrounding the chamber above the guards. They dimmed as the man in white nodded his head.

Again James calmed himself. Exhaling slowly. Focusing on fact. Knowing the council had nothing to convict him.

"Let us begin," said the man in white. He peered over his spectacles at James, searching for signs of weakness, attempting to intimidate James with his cold grey eyes. James remained stone-faced. The man turned his gaze to Ammoncourt, who smiled back. His smile feigned friendliness, but his eyes sent another message. The man was unable to hold eye contact for more than an instant. He looked down at the lectern, clearly vexed. He turned his body slightly toward James as if to block the sight of Ammoncourt entirely.

"The charges: acting against a council mandate, spearheading a conspiracy, and murder."

"Murder?" James shouted. Taken aback, his heart immediately began pounding in his ears. Ammoncourt's eyes glanced quickly at James, but he made no other movement.

"Calm yourself," Master Elder said with enjoyment in knowing he had broken James's emotional shield with a single word. The red-robed figures each took a step toward James. Master Elder raised his hand, stopping the guards. James silently cursed himself for reacting.

"The council mandate ..."

"In order to afford a proper defense, the accused has a right to the victim's name, Master Elder," Ammoncourt interrupted.

Master Elder looked up with a grin. Ammoncourt's interruption provided him the opportunity for retribution from his previous embarrassment.

"Of course, Master Ammoncourt. The victim is Akil Karanis."

Several gasps could be heard from the seating area above. Ammoncourt's face turned dour as he took a step forward.

"Preposterous. Simply because the council is too incompetent to locate the man does not imply he's been killed. No proof has ever surfaced of this so-called murder; no evidence of a body has ever been found. It is clear that the council is grasping at anything in order to besmirch Mr. Stuart. If this, the most serious of charges, is so riddled with holes, how is any among the council supposed to give merit to the remaining arguments? I call for a vote on the immediate dismissal of all charges. Let us stop wasting the council's time by allowing Alvaro's influence to win over absurdity."

"Blasphemous! How dare you speak of Grand Master Elder Alvaro in such a manner. Such admonishment will not be tolerated," said Master Elder.

"I speak the truth. Nothing more," replied Ammoncourt calmly.

"This is not an open forum in which to further your political agenda, Master Ammoncourt. We are here today because crimes have been committed. Laws have been broken. A man has been killed. Now be silent and allow this hearing to proceed, or I will have you removed."

"Your puppets do not frighten me. Nor do your threats. I stand on the side of truth. Which, above all else, will prevail."

"Master Elder," a voice said from the seating area above the chamber. "I suggest you move quickly to show us your evidence. I imagine it is irrefutable, proving this boy is the murderer of Akil Karanis, or you wouldn't have summoned us here."

"Of course, High Elder Grimm," Master Elder replied hastily. "With respect to the murder of Akil Karanis I present the following damning evidence—a witness to the crime."

Gasps fell from the seats above. Master Elder outstretched his arms, palms facing each other. An orb of blue light no larger than a pinpoint grew in the space between his hands.

"As always, witness accounts are classified incontrovertible." He turned toward James, grinning.

Without another word, Master Elder gently tossed the orb into the air. As it reached its apex, it expanded, enveloping the entire chamber in a new scene.

In a forest of giant trees, James sat on a large stone by a fire. He looked younger, less burdened. He leaned toward the flames to warm his hands. A flash of light drew his attention. He stood quickly and turned toward the source. Akil Karanis appeared. James relaxed. He walked toward Akil, then stopped several feet away, and, encircling his right fist in his left hand, he bowed deeply. Akil returned the greeting.

"I didn't think you'd return," James said.

"Nor I, until I was summoned."

"By whom?"

"By you, of course," Akil replied, slightly perplexed by James's response.

"I did not summon you, Master," James replied, a concerned look quickly replacing the relief.

"We must leave quickly. Gather your things," said Akil.

James stepped toward the fire and lifted a leather bag lying next to the stone upon which he had been seated. Another flash of light drew both men's attention. A third person, veiled by the

shadow of the tree, appeared.

"What are you doing here?" James called out.

"You know this person, James?" Akil asked.

James looked into Akil's eyes for a brief moment, then quickly muttered a word. A large rock lifted from the ground, and as if James controlled it with invisible strings, he heaved it at Akil. The stone hit an invisible barrier and fell harmlessly to the ground.

"James. Why?" asked Akil.

A purple flame grew between James's outstretched hands. Without a word, he pushed it toward Akil. Looking neither afraid nor even concerned, the flame struck Akil. He stiffened and began to shake where he stood. Beams of red light bore outward from beneath his skin. He let out a wail of pain as the light exploded from his body, leaving only a small purple orb floating in the air where he had stood. Akil Karanis was dead. James's hands were still outstretched, his face still wrought with concentration after casting such a massive incantation. The scene dissolved like mist, revealing the chamber once again.

Ammoncourt looked at James in disbelief. Pandemonium gripped James's emotions.

"This cannot be," Ammoncourt muttered.

"Incontrovertible," Master Elder said with a wry smile, "as are our laws. I move to immediate sentencing if it pleases the council."

"This is clearly a fabrication. The third law would have had to have been broken, as the alleged spell caster still stands before us," said Ammoncourt.

"Never in the history of our kind has someone tampered with a memory as you now allege," replied Master Elder.

"What is more reasonable? That this boy has managed to circumvent one of the unbreakable laws, or that someone, a person with real power, has finally found a way to tamper with a memory, which is not among the unbreakable eight?"

Ammoncourt stepped toward the center of the chamber, his arms outstretched in a pleading posture.

"Ladies and gentlemen. I implore you to listen to reason. The council fears this boy because of what he is. Have no doubt, he is the Anointed One. Do not be swayed by political motivation. Use common sense. Is it truly reasonable to assume that not only did this boy find a way to break an unbreakable law but that he was also able to overpower the greatest sorcerer of our time? Or perhaps there is another explanation?"

"Touching, however irrelevant at this point, I'm afraid," Master Elder said with the slightest of smirks. "It's over, Ammoncourt," he whispered. "You should have never returned."

"The only thing left to discuss is the sentence," Master Elder said, raising his voice.

"No!" James shouted, finally coming out of his shock-induced stupor.

"I didn't murder Akil. None of that happened. He's like a father to me. Someone tampered with the memory!"

James's body began to shake. The vein on his forehead pulsed as the ground started to tremble. Gasps and cries could be heard from the witnesses hidden in the shadowed seating above.

Master Elder nodded at the red-robed guards, and their body language quickly changed from aggressive to apprehensive. Neither moved as James continued to shake. A faint red glow surrounded him as he clenched his fists in an attempt to control himself.

"Now, you fools!" Master Elder screamed, jolting the guards into action. They stepped forward and took James by his arms. Both guards immediately fell to the ground motionless. As if expecting it, Master Elder waved his arms, signaling the axe-wielding guards to converge. James's vision began to spin as he listened to the sentence read by Master Elder. He could hear Ammoncourt arguing, but his voice was distant, muted.

"Rarely among our own people is such a heinous crime committed. The victim must be taken into consideration, being a servant to our council and community for a time greater than even Grand Master Elder Alvaro. It is because of the severity of this crime and the loss our world has incurred as a result, that I recommend to the council that James Lochlan Stuart IV be immediately exiled toThe Never."

"You cannot do this," cried Ammoncourt, no longer stooped over his cane. "He is the Anointed One!"

Shouts, screams, and cries erupted from the witnesses. The last thing James heard was "Banish him!" All sound fell into a void as he was engulfed in a spiral of purple smoke and pulled from the only world he had ever known.

Chapter Two

The Never

James could feel the blood pulsing through his head. He could hear it whooshing past his ears. He focused on the pain that came with every contraction of his heart. For brief moments between the contractions, the pain lessened, minute reprieves from the pain he was sure would end his life. He had no sight, no feeling. It could have been hours, days, or weeks. All sense of time was lost. His mind would allow him nothing except the cycle.

(Continues...)



Excerpted from EXILED by J. R. WAGNER Copyright © 2012 by Joshua R. Wagner. Excerpted by permission of Live Oak Book Company. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 31, 2012

    There is no other story out there quite like the story that you

    There is no other story out there quite like the story that you will find in the pages of Exiled! This first book in The Never Chronicles series creates an intriguing new world that you want to immerse yourself in, with new characters that you easily connect with from the beginning. My imagination has never been more stretched.

    The writing style of new author J.R Wagner is fresh and keeps you on your toes. The chapters jump from one time to another and while this may take getting used to for some, I found that this concept triggered my thirst for more and more.

    Exiled is a great first novel in the series and I can't wait to see how the rest of the story unfolds!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 30, 2012

    This was a fun read from start to...I can't say finish because i

    This was a fun read from start to...I can't say finish because it better not be over! James is a great character, one readers of all ages will come to love, and while the time line jumps back and forth, it works well with the subject matter. The separate chapters really bring home the isolation of the 'Never'. I am looking forward to the next installment

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 30, 2012

    Exiled

    From the first page you will be submersed in the world of The Never. Wagner's use of imagery creates a world full of magic and wonder. Early on in the book you will become invested in the main character, James; rooting for him as he navigates challenges both in the world of The Never, and in the recesses of his mind. Readers may find the flashbacks scattered throughout the book distracting and the shifting point of view inconsistent, and I agree, however, I find that the pages dripping with imagery and the timeless yet fresh take on the plot make up for these setbacks.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 12, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I want to thank the author, J.R. Wagner, for sending me a copy o

    I want to thank the author, J.R. Wagner, for sending me a copy of his book to read and provide an honest review.

    Blurb from Goodreads:
    James has never known an ordinary life. As long as he can remember, he and his family have been on the run—moving from place to place, never settling down, never growing roots. Now, just when he’s on the brink of manhood, the very thing his family has been trying to prevent tears him from all he has ever known and thrusts him into a place where he is powerless and alone.

    Bent on finding a way back, James must brave a place reserved for the worst of his kind. He quickly learns that the land itself poses a greater threat than its inhabitants and if he is to have any chance of returning, he must work with the very people he’s been raised to fear.

    James has known magic since just after he was born. As a sorcerer, his skills are exceptional yet when he wakes in The Never, his abilities are gone. Armed with nothing but determination and the will to survive, he braves a land wrought with dangers, mysteries and temptations meant to ensnare both body and mind and prevent escape forever.

    This book was an interesting mix between Harry Potter and The Hobbit! I was not expecting it to be so.

    James is the main character, a young sorcerer accused of a heinous crime and banished to The Never after being accused of killing one of the greatest sorcerers, Akil. However, James insists that he is not the murderer. He is full of emotion and that seems to be his downfall, what gets him in trouble and ultimately gets him banished to The Never.

    Wagner has created a world full of magic and fantasy. A world where things are never quite what they seem to be.

    The book alternates between the present, where James is fighting to escape The Never, a feat never before accomplished (at least the the knowledge of those who are currently banished there) and to flashbacks of James' life as he grows to be known as The Annointed One (the one who will save humanity from the Epoc Terminus). The flashbacks provide the reader with a rich history of how James' father, Stuart, comes to know and acquire the abilities to do magic, and teach it to his son. It also provides us with clues of who James can and cannot trust. James' family does everything possible to keep him safe, including moving often from place to place, never settling down to become familiar with their surroundings and the people they meet.

    I really enjoyed the world building that Wanger put into this novel. It's interesting to become familiar with the land of The Never, which never ceases to show James new and exciting things. It's also exciting to watch as James regains his magical powers (which were lost to him when first banished to The Never). Wagner's descriptions make you feel like you are walking right along side his characters.

    James meets many new people while in The Never, including Luno, Kilani, Roger and William (all of whom become his partners in exploring the lands of The Never in the hopes of figuring out how to escape back to where they came from). Luno becomes a teacher to James, keeping him in the dark on many things so that James can ultimately understand he is the one meant to help others escape. I have to say that I do not trust Luno 100%. There is just something about him that makes me feel as if he will, in the long run, turn on James once he gets what he wants from him. Kilani is James' love interest. Although we do not see any romance in this book, you can feel the tension building between them. And several times it is mentioned how she makes James feel. I have to say that as I was reading this book, I had this flash of Ahsoka from Star Wars The Clone Wars, and I have no idea why! I suppose my knowledge that J.R. enjoys Star Wars may have some role to play in that. William and Roger are characters that aren't truly explored in this novel. We get a glimpse as to who they are and how they are willing to help, but I don't really get a deep sense of their characters and I hope to find out more about them in the futures.

    I did find some discrepancies in the writing, mainly the ages given at the beginning of the flashback chapters not coinciding with the actual age of James during that chapter. I was told that this was an editorial mistake and has since been fixed. And I do have to say that I really don't have a sense of what James truly looks like. This bothers me as I really like to be able to picture my main characters in my mind when reading a book. Finally, I do understand the idea that James is the only one who can help them leave the never, but I question how Luno knows so much (although I know he's done his research) seeing as others have not been able to cross the water to the islands they visit during their adventures. I wonder why it is Luno believes that the islands hold the key to them being able to escape. I feel like I need a lot more background on this topic.

    Wagner has definitely created an interesting world full of action, adventure, intrigue and mystery. I was captivated from start to finish. And what a cliffhanger of an ending! I have to say that I am not normally a huge fan of fantasy, but Wagner really weaves a delightful and entertaining story. I am truly looking forward to reading book 2 of this series.

    3.5 out of 5 stars.

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  • Posted July 12, 2012

    I am completely and in love with the world that J.R. has built i

    I am completely and in love with the world that J.R. has built in The Never! The world is built up perfectly and I am completely sucked into this new and exciting world. The character building of James on his journey through The Never as well as everything he discovers on the way, as well as things he doesn't discover just as yet. Just as all the major characters in this novel, like Kalani and Akil, are very important in the story as well as interesting to hear about and read. I love the way that everything is described in this novel, we see everything happening in our heads and feel like we're on the journey with James and his friends. I love how we're given background information about the world. I am completely taken with the idea of Faithfuls and Unfaithfuls, it makes the world bring itself closer to ours, with all the different beliefs. The constant jumping to different places and times is a little confusing at first, but we quickly get handle on it. We are left in agony waiting for the next novel to come out. We have so many questions that we want answered. It just got a little much with all of the flashbacks, I wanted to get a grip more on the present day than the time. Although I love the background information provided, because no one now-a-days really tells of the backstory when in another world.

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  • Posted June 3, 2012

    Sunday, June 3, 2012Review:Exiled by J.R. Wagner 4 stars Exiled

    Sunday, June 3, 2012Review:Exiled by J.R. Wagner
    4 stars Exiled is a about a power fight,prophecy,magic and the boy it all falls around. This story jumps all around in time and place. I listened to it on my kindle and sometimes got lost because I did not realized it had jumped again. So I recommend just read it, don't listen to it. The story starts in 1989 in South America during a hearing. James Lochlan Stuart IV is on trial for murder. He is found guilty and sent to the Never. No one comes back from thier. James wakes up and has none of his powers and is in a strange and dangerous place. The 3 chapeter takes place in December 1894 England. the last chapter takes place in June 1626, Ireland. Akil Karanis wants to find the person who the prophecy says will save their people. For many years the ones who do not believe in magic kill those who do. While thier laws prohibt fighting back. The prophecy says the fourth of the name with strong magic will save them. James the third is told about it and shown the world of magic and tells him his son will be the one it speaks of. So James third learns magic so he can teach and protect his son. Anyone can learn magic if they believe in it. They can use this powder to go to anyland that they have been before. You can transport to a place you dont know. This tale is good but I hate when you finsh a book and the story is not done and you have to wait for it. James when he gets to the never he meets the people that have been banished to thier and when they hear his name recognized him as the one who can save them. No one can drink standing water without dying. They can't travel across the ocean it spits them back out or they drown. There are a lot of different creatures and dangerous plant life. But they believe James can change that. In fact they build a small boat and have him sail across the bay and he survives and give the people hope. So they build a bigger boat so a group and can try and gather the things they will need to leave. Thier is so many unanswered questions that I want answered. Oh well I will have to wait for the next book. I was given this ebook to read in exchange of honest review from Netgalley. 05/05/2012 PUB Greenleaf Book Group

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2012

    Exiled is an excellent read and written in a very unique way. Th

    Exiled is an excellent read and written in a very unique way. The book progresses between the present and the past as each chapter changes making for a unique experience as you follow the lead characters story while at the same time learning the history of the lead character.

    The story line is very well written and entertaining. I highly recommend this book to all.

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  • Posted May 21, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    JR Wagner's Exiled is the first in The Never Chronicles series.

    JR Wagner's Exiled is the first in The Never Chronicles series. The cover is dark and mysterious, a perfect reflection of the synopsis. I was intrigued by the story, and you know me, I was lured by the cover.

    In Exiled, James Lochlan Stuart IV has been wrongly accused of murder. For his unfortunate punishment, he is exiled to The Never, a place no one escapes, and is stripped of his powers. Set in Europe in the late 1800s, James is determined to find his way back. What he doesn't expect are the discoveries that he stumbles upon during his time in the Exile.

    James is the anointed one, with the promises of great power and magic. Being exiled was definitely a story standard, but Wagner wrote this hero in an interesting way. I admired James' strength, and I only wish to have see a lot more of it. Much more than the flashbacks. I wanted to know James in present day, but there are two other books to read through. I was immediately empathetic to James and his trials, and by the end, James was my hero.

    Wagner's world is amazing. The Exiled is filled with water and magic, something that isn't usually used as a setting. He was detailed, enough so that I was there right next to James. I wish there was a little more to the character development of the supporting characters. Ankil should have been the other main character, but I didn't feel there was enough of him to invest in. I didn't appreciate Kilani as much as I wanted to. And really, too bad. This little glimmer of romance would have been so great in Exiled.

    I felt a few disconnects throughout Exiled. In the beginning, I felt the nice speed of plot momentum, only to be halted by a flashback. It didn't flow, for me. A problem I have sometimes with fantasies are the details. Sometimes, I feel that there is too much detail to explain the world, the characters, and their history. It's like there is too much information and not enough interaction. Because of this, I couldn't fully connect to James.

    I loved the concept of Exiled. I loved how Wagner too James' fears and turned them into something that he gathered his strength from. I loved the challenges that was set in front of James. I haven't seen any of these in a story in a long time. And while I had a few issues with the story, Wagner kept me interested throughout the book. Regardless of my own disconnects to the story, I was interested enough to keep going.

    And I'm really glad I did. I wasn't exactly happy with the ending, but that usually happens for me when it's the first of a series.

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  • Posted May 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Intriguing Fantasy Adventure for YA/Adult Readers

    Review:

    After reading the book blurb and examining the atramentous, yet alluring cover art, I was ready to phase into the unfathomable world of The Never. The Exiled started out strong, J. R. Wagner's writing ability immediately apparent - his lambent language and imagery strewn across each page; however, after the first few 'flashbacks', I was more confused than engaged. The lines between past and present were unclear, and they did not seem to be in James' point of view, but recounted from a more omniscient perspective. I eventually got used to these 'transitions', they added to the complexity of the plot which I found very interesting, although I did not enjoy some of the stranger character relationships. With the time-changes came an influx of old and new character introductions from Jame's past and present as well as his parents' timeline. It took me a while to nail-down certain personalities and what parts they played. The relationship that perturbed me the most was seventeen year-old Jame's immutable fawning over the mid-twenty-something Kilani. Teens have crushes, understandable, but I did not find their bond realistic. The characters were well-developed physically and descriptively, unfortunately they were missing an emotional factor, making it hard for me to connect with them. Exiled took me longer than expected to read because of its hidden intricacies, I now understand why J. R. Wagner said that his obsession with LOST inspired him to write The Never Chronicles. I was a fan of that show too, until the constant back-and-forth story-line became daunting; hopefully some of the reader's questions will be answered in book two of the series - I would really like to figure out how everything plays out in the end. Overall, I found the book intriguing, but not as exciting as I would have hoped based on its description. An actual cliffhanger would have been appreciated... Recommended for teen and adult readers who enjoy a more challenging read - fans of LOST included.

    Rating: Bounty's Out (3/5)

    *** I received this book from the author (JKSCommunications) in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

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