Damen’s understanding of Laurent rearranged itself, in order that he might despise him more accurately.
Summary taken from Goodreads:
Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos. But when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave.
Beautiful, manipulative, and deadly, his new master, Prince Laurent, epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country.
For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else…
Please note: This book is for mature audiences and very much an adult book NOT Young Adult, like I normally read.
I joined the bandwagon. I first heard about this book from newsletter that Sarah J. Maas sends out. I was immediately interested. Then before I knew it, it was blowing up everywhere I could see. I don’t know if it’s one of those things that you don’t notice because you don’t know what it is, but it’s on my radar now– that’s for sure.
An interesting fact, this series was originally self-published then Penguin acquired the rights to republish the series. That always gives me hope that self-publishing is an option one day.
This is a heavily character driven story. And I love that. Sometimes fantasy novels have too much world building or it’s too confusing because there’s not enough information. This was more like Fantasy-lite and Romance-strong. Which happened to be quite perfect, even there weren’t much romance type scenes between the characters you wanted there to be.
What’s really handy is that C.S. Pacat puts a character list in the beginning of the novel, so if you get confused, it’s easy to read a short description of who everyone is!
- Damen, Prince Damianos of Akielos is our main character and it’s easy to feel sorry for him. It’s hard to keep in perspective that Laurent hates him for a reason but there’s nothing objective of his character. It’s so interesting getting to know him but I’m desperate to know how he acted when he wasn’t a slave.
- Laurant, Prince of Vere. Wishywashy, manipulative, rude, and standoffish but I can’t believe how much I kind of adore him & his sass. I want him and Damen to get together ASAP.
- Kastor, the bastard child of the King of Akielos. He murdered Damen’s household & sent Damen to the palace of his enemy as a slave. Despite those horrible actions, I still want to know what Kastor & Damen were like growing up. Did they get along? Did they despise each other publicly? Was Kastor’s betrayal out of the blue or par for the course?
Laurent could inspire homicidal tendencies simply by breathing.
- As I said before, this is a character driven story and it really showcases the changes in their actions over the course of the novel. It’s fascinating to see that development.
- Be warned, there are scenes containing rape and coercion. This is not your average fluffy fantasy. The scenes are written thoughtfully and with care. They’re a way to showcase what kind of world the characters live in by being brutally honest with the surroundings. Rape is about power and that is certainly why it’s in the story.
- I would never want to visit Vere or Akielos but I find their culture morbidly fascinating. It brings up a lot of questions about morality, sex, nudity, and power.
I can’t wait to dive into Prince’s Gambit and the third book, Kings Rising was just released last week so that’s exciting.
Have you read this trilogy? What are your thoughts?
Hang in there guys, it’s almost the weekend.