15834503There are so many things to like about this book – but perhaps the best part is that it’s part of a series. I don’t usually stay up late on work nights – especially when I have to be in court the next day, but this had me up every night until I finish. If you like fantasy, read this book.  It’s not a M/M Romance, but so what – it is a great book, read it!

Gaspar is the Emperor of Uttor, an up and coming nation that has most of the other kingdoms wary.  Sebboy is an old, powerful kingdom on the decline.  When the Prince of Sebboy kidnaps Gaspar’s beloved sister, that sets the stage for what’s about to come.  Lorant kidnaps Adora Leonnte – princess of Uttor hoping to marry her fast enough that Uttor won’t attack.  That didn’t work out so well for him or his family.  Uttor crushed Sebboy in a matter of days, making Lorant and his family prisoners of Uttor.  Fortunately the story isn’t about him or his troubles.

Julissa is a princess of Sebboy and Gaspar takes a liking to her before he realizes she is a princes.  The story revolves around the aftermath of Sebboy’s fall and the relationship between Julissa and Gaspar.

Gaspar is so perfectly written – you kinda hate him at first, though not really under the circumstances, but you see his good soul even at his ‘worst.’ Julissa was the perfect foil for him, though I have to say I think I loved Adora more – she’s just so my kinda person – I just loved her heart.

Okay so I have to say this and I’m sure Tali is going to laugh, shake her head, and call me a dork, but I was kinda turned off by the m/f sex – yeah yeah yeah – book two is more my style, but she is such a tease – the drop dead, beautiful, gay Petra and nothing . . . nothing – He’s caught in the act of having sex with a man, but WE don’t get to see THAT? We hear about the aftermath and how his family almost kills him, but that’s it. Gaspar and Julissa – yeah we get all those intimate moments, but not Petra. C’mon, what is this a m/f fantasy boo….. oh yeah it is. My bad. 😛

Anyway, there is SO much more about this world I want to know, not just the little bit about Uttor, Sebboy, or Bannari that we’re told. The mysterious Koth Kingdoms are – well a mystery and the rest of the world is out there, but we barely get a glimpse of it. Such a broad canvas left for the author to paint. But even though this is a ‘fantasy’ series, the fantasy is merely an interesting back story to the character driven plot.  We get to see such a rich array of personality traits and they are done so well without being cliches.

As I said, one nice thing about this book is that it’s part of a series and book two Dangerous Beauty is already in print.  Books three and four, Adored and Victory Portrait, are coming soon.

A must read if you like fantasy, a definite recommendation even if you don’t.