The wilding Estin just wanted to be left alone, find shelter and food, and live to a nice old age. With war escalating around him, these may be beyond his reach. Instead, survival becomes his only goal as he flees civilization to pursue the chance at a better life by following a fox wildling into the mountains, far from the war's conflicts.
The war might still be raging elsewhere, but Estin will find the mountains are far from safe. Estin must decide what he is willing to do and become, as well as who to trust if he is to survive, no matter where he lives.
In Wilder Lands by Jim Galford tells the story of Estin. Estin is a wildling, a race of humanoid animals. He is the only one of his kind that he knows of and as the story begins he is living in the slums of a city stealing to survive. Wildlings exist only on the very fringe of human society and it is not an unusual occurrence for them to be scooped up and sold as slaves. When a theft that turns out to be much more than he bargained for goes south he is forced to flee the city. Luckily for him he hooks up with some other wildlings, unfortunately they are of the predator variety and he has a very tough time finding acceptance as a species of prey.
There is a lot of stuff going on in this book and it revolves around some very well done characters and a unique story. The book covers a full gambit of emotion with several instances of humor in the books that made me chuckle and some the issue of slavery is treated with a very real gravity. There is also a bit of a romantic element that Estin finds himself involved in. That is usually a bit touchy of a subject for me, as if it's not done right I lose a lot of interest in the story. Jim managed to keep me involved throughout. This is a very well done book and deserves a 4.5 star rating that I have no problem rounding up for the review sites.
Review copy provided by the author.