Review copy from Netgalley
On the eve of war between their two countries, Lord Aidan of the Greenlands and Prince Varion of the Summerlands finally voice their feelings for each other. The two men have been meeting in secret for over a year trying to negotiate peace, but due to the warmongering of Price Varion’s father King Cendai this is not achievable
King Cendai is a vicious and cruel character who has fathered seven sons from at least 5 wives. His newest war is to try and take out the Dragonfolk, a people who are descended from Dragons. The dragonfolk live under a horrible curse that kills the Male once they mate, and King Cendai is after the knowledge of the Dragon power which allows anyone to turn into a dragon but at a cost to the person. To achieve this he uses two of his son’s Varion and Tiernon.
Varion is a kind and noble man, one who doesn’t fit into Cendai’s court. Somehow he has kept his humanity while growing up in this father’s court because everyone else we meet from this court is cruel. He is held captive by a deathbed promise he made his mother to look after his brothers and ensure they don’t turn out like their father. This promise is one that hurts Varion time and time again, Tiernon the only brother we meet, is already manipulative and cruel like his father believing that this is the only way to survive his father’s court, but Varion holds to his promise and tries help Tiernon regardless of the cost to himself.
Aidan is the nephew to the king of Greenlands. He is a brave character that will do anything to help the people he cares about. When we meet the two men Aidan offers Varion asylum which Varion refuses. When Varion and his father are in trouble he uses the dragon power to transform into a dragon at great cost to himself.
Even though it was a short book, the world the author built was enjoyable. It moved quickly through and each scene was fleshed out. I liked Aidan and Varion together, they were well suited and fought to protect each other.
My only niggle is that I felt the ending was rushed and care wasn’t given to some of the characters there was more emotion shown to the death of Niall than the death of Aidan’s father. At the time he just blinks and back onto research. Regardless of if it was expected, I still would have expected Aidan to at least react to the death of his father, not just dismiss it entirely