First in a new fantasy series from the author of the Novels of the Half-Light City.
Entangled in a court ruled by tradition and intrigue, a young witch must come to terms with newfound power and desire—and a choice between loyalty and survival.…
The royal witches of Anglion have bowed to tradition for centuries. If a woman of royal blood manifests powers, she is immediately bound by rites of marriage. She will serve her lord by practicing the tamer magics of the earth—ensuring good harvests and predicting the weather. Any magic more dangerous is forbidden.
Lady Sophia Kendall, thirty-second in line to the throne, is only days away from finding out if she will be blessed—or perhaps cursed—with magic. When a vicious attack by Anglion’s ancient enemies leaves the kingdom in chaos, Sophia is forced to flee the court. Her protector by happenstance is Lieutenant Cameron Mackenzie, a member of the royal guard, raised all his life to be fiercely loyal to the Crown.
Then Sophia’s powers manifest stronger than she ever imagined they would, and Cameron and she are inextricably linked in the process. As a witch unbound by marriage rites, Sophia is not only a threat to the established order of her country, but is also a weapon for those who seek to destroy it. Faced with old secrets and new truths, she must decide if she will fight for her country or succumb to the delicious temptation of power.
My thoughts on the book:
After reading the reviews about this novel, I was a bit apprehensive to start it, but I actually really enjoyed it. Yes it's an adult novel, but I have been wanting to read some adult fantasy, and this was a good place to start. I really enjoyed Sophie as a character, and Cameron was an excellent leading man. The plot was intriguing, and the world-building was fairly well done. The pacing was pretty spot on, too. I think that as long as you're aware that this is an adult book and sex scenes are present, then you'll like it just fine. If that offends you, then skip this one.
Sophie was a fairly strong character, considering this book seemed to be seemed to be set in something akin to the Middle Ages. Women were oppressed, but she stood on her own very well. She was well-developed, too, and pretty easy to relate to. Cameron was also decently well-developed, and I really respected him as a leading man. The secondary characters weren't as fleshed out, and I would have liked to have gotten to know all of them a bit more.
The plot was intriguing, but the climax wasn't that thrilling. There was no huge sense of urgency at all in this novel. A lot of it was world-building, and for the most part, the world makes sense to me now. I didn't feel that anything was over explained. The pacing was pretty spot-on, though a couple of places dragged. The ending set up the sequel, and didn't really answer any of the questions raised in this novel, which I didn't like. However, I will be continuing the series.
Overall, I'd recommend this book to people who love adult fantasy. I wouldn't go so far as to say that this is high fantasy, since there were no dragons or anything. It just seemed to be set in an alternate world that had magic. Either way, this series is worth reading. I say give it a shot.