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Reader and Raelynx (Twelve Houses #4)

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  4,163 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews
The final confrontation is here: the fourth book in the stunning fantasy series.

In a world of secret sorceries and forbidden desires, the mystic Cammon must put aside his personal feelings for Princess Amalie and help her find a suitor, until he discovers that he needs to protect her from her own powers.
Paperback, 464 pages
Published September 30th 2008 by Ace (first published November 6th 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I think it goes to show what an extraordinary author Sharon Shinn is because I'm giving this four stars despite my many issues with the book—especially with the main character, Amalie.

I didn't really warm up to her and I found her selfish when she refused to marry anyone but Cammon. She needed to marry a noble and forge an alliance to help secure the throne. Was that fair to her? No, of course not. But she had a duty to her country—thousands of soldiers had just died for her! She wasn't even bei
Aug 24, 2014 Merrin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, three for four isn't bad in a tetralogy, right? The second was so disappointing, especially given how awesome the first was, but the third and fourth have more than made up for any problems I might have had with Kirra's part in the story.

I found it curious, the whole way through, that we saw everyone's point of view except Donnal's. And of the six, he's the one we know the least about. He's a shape shifter devoted to Kirra, the son of a serf and uncomfortable in the presence of lords and la
Don't let the 3-stars fool you, I loved this book. Cammon is a character that I have admired throughout the series. I have enjoyed his spirit and positive approach to everything. He is not the typical 'mooody, depressed, and introspective' fantasy lead. Refreshing.

There are many heroines in the series overall but the Princess Amalie was the focus. She and Cammon decided to fall in love and break every other rule they could in the process. It worked for me at every turn. I don't feel they were wr
Oct 12, 2011 Chachic rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed
Originally posted here.

Reader and Raelynx by Sharon Shinn is the fourth book in the Twelve Houses series. My friend Celina of The Bookkeeper was nice enough to let me borrow her copy of this book. As always, thanks! Reading order: Mystic and Rider, The Thirteenth House, Dark Moon Defender, Reader and Raelynx, Fortune and Fate. Should the books be read in order? Yes. Also, don't read any of the synopses of the latter books if you haven't read the earlier ones. They contain spoilery bits. Seriousl
Kathy ~ Bookworm Nation
This is the fourth book in the Twelve House series, and it is one of my favorites. It is written almost as the last in the series but I know there is one more left, although that one is from a totally different point of view. Cammon and Senneth are really the main characters in this book, I was once again delighted to hear more from Senneth. The relationship with Amalie and Cammon is no great surprise (although, for me it was lacking some of the passion or intensity of Senneth-Tayse or Kirra-Rom ...more
Dec 21, 2014 Sandra rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, audio
I'd like the phone book if it was read by Joe Berrett.
Nov 07, 2015 Lark rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, romance
Yeah, I gave it one star. I honestly hated this book and I only finished the entire thing because I wanted to finish out the series. The one star is a personal opinion of the characters and the plot - not because the writing is poor or there are major construction issues. It's because I just really don't like this book.

I absolutely loathed Cammon and Princess Amalie. And when you hate the two main characters, you know you're in for a bad ride. Originally in the first few books I liked him as a c
May 09, 2015 Kelcey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well, that just about wrapped everything up… wait, there's another book after this one? Anyhow, I have been looking forward to Cammon's story for quite some time now and I was not disappointed. Being a reader, Cammon has a rather unique perspective and it made for an interesting story. I enjoyed every little bit of the plot in this book and it was especially gratifying that the author tied in some minor characters from the previous books. Everything that happened contributed to the plot and ther ...more
Miss Clark
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
THIS BOOK MADE ME SO HAPPY. *This review may be slightly less coherent than my usual fare due to my fangirlish rhapsodizing; if so, I apologize.*

(*Spoilers in this paragraph!*) As regards the main romance, I think it kept me in the most suspense out of all the books. Cammon and Amalie are an impossible match, but also impossible not to root for (unlike Kirra and Romar in book two, whose romance was possibly even more impossible, but also really dislikable—and unlike Senneth/Tayse, Kirra/Donnal,
May 01, 2008 Tina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sff-fantasy
This is the fourth book in Sharon Shinn's Twelve Houses series.

This is the continuing story that began in the first book Mystic and Rider where a group of six people, conscripted by the King, were sent out to travel the countryside to see if the rumbles of unrest and rebellion in the land were true. The six, consist of Senneth (a noblewoman and strong mystic who controls fire in all its forms), Kirra (a noblewoman mystic who is a shapeshifter), Donnal (Kirra's faithful servant, son of a poacher
Dec 29, 2007 Angie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good-uns
This is the fourth book in Shinn's Twelve Houses series. Each volume focuses on one of the six companions and this one follows the youngest--Cammon. The boy who reads souls. Heretofore, Cammon has been something of a delightful enigma. The scruffy little brother with a good heart, not an ounce of tact, and the ability to gauge a person's true intentions. In this volume, he comes into his own and it was a treat to be one up on the rest of the characters for once. To actually be inside his head. C ...more
I was a little disappointed with this book. I liked the character Justin in this series but wasn't all that exited for his book. But somehow Sharon Shinn got me tied up anyhow and I loved Dark Moon Defender (previous book in the series). Here I wasn't all that exited about the character but I had high hopes that once again Sharon Shinn would change my mind. With Reader and Raelynx, not so much. Not to say the book was bad. I thought the plot was good and Sharon Shinn's writing is still great. Bu ...more
Feb 17, 2008 jane rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've decided I don't trust Sharon Shinn's moral sense. She has characters break taboos without consequences. A mystic can change another person into an animal with no negative effects on either. An innocent can kill a man for the first time without being distressed. None of her preferred characters ever die but the "bad people" are all destroyed. The end justifies the means. A major lie told to deceive the people is no problem in the name of true love. I don't think I will read any more Sharon S ...more
Dec 01, 2015 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The war that's been threatened throughout the series arrives and the remaining secrets come tumbling into the open. This book focuses on Cammon and the princess Amalie. It's another of the ill fated romance sort of stories with the nobody mystic in love with the princess.

This book feels like the end of the series even though there is another one after it the main overarching plot comes to a conclusion and pretty much all the remaining threads are tied up in a fairly satisfying way.

We still hav
Oct 29, 2015 Lorena rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
The fourth book in this series wraps up all the main plot points from the previous books. It looks like there is a fifth book after this one, but it appears to follow a minor character who was only introduced in this (4th) book, and even then only mentioned very occasionally. It felt like a pretty obvious set up to have an excuse to write something else set in this world, and I don't find myself terribly compelled to go on after this point.

I mentioned in my previous reviews that the first book
Jan 15, 2009 Latharia rated it really liked it
Another great novel in this series! I enjoyed seeing all of the characters develop further & to see lots of loose ends get tied up (the appearance of minor characters from previous novels was an especially nice tough). My sole gripe was that near the climax, my immersion in the story was broken when I felt like the characters were all idiots for not having puzzled out a problem that I felt was staring them in the face. Barring that, it was a super read!
Aug 31, 2009 Natalie rated it really liked it
I have been enjoying this series which I started while I was on vacation. This is the fourth book in the series and a certain familiarity with the characters is required or the dynamics between them may seem trite or contrived, however it is a very entertaining read and this volume, like the series as a whole, is a page turner! I've been reading it on kindle for iphone and found the digital format to be just as readable as the paperbacks!
Jennifer Mash
I normally really like Sharon Shinn (Archangel was great!) but this was kinda eh. Found out in the middle that it's actually part of a series of books and I jumped in at the end. I might have liked it better if I had read it in order. The good people were VERY GOOD the bad people were VERY BAD everyone in love was VERY IN LOVE. Every conflict was ever so tidily resolved by the end of the book.
Oct 16, 2015 Lindsay rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is the book in the series that made me give up.

The first novel captured me and made me question what was going to happen with brewing conflict between the Twelve Houses. I'd hoped for interwoven conspiracies, the wide-spread hunt of magic users, and the thrill of it building through this series into a culminating conflict. What I got was another copy/paste love story.

Romance is fine. Here's where it lost me. Every novel in this series-four whole books in-centered around the heroine meeting
May 15, 2016 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
3.75 stars -- Cammon's a favorite, and this was a satisfying climax to the national conflict, though as I've said in other reviews, battlefields aren't my favorite place to spend reading-for-pleasure time. I don't mind a resolution that's a little too-nearly HEA for real life. And (view spoiler)

Trivial criticism: Donato's not my favorite cover art
May 18, 2016 Kayt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wishlist, fantasy
"You're a jerk, and just in case you were thinking of being more of a jerk, let me demonstrate that I have a GIANT MAN-EATING CAT-MONSTER under my control. Have a nice day." -Amalie, basically

There is a reason this book is rated the highest of the quintet, and that reason is Cammon is awesome and Amalie is awesome and Sharon Shinn is an amazing author. Various (hidden) spoilers below for those curious.

This book continues the tradition of focusing mostly on one of the core characters (in this cas
Aug 17, 2016 Gail rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyed this series- even though this seems like it had a satisfying ending- another book follows- with Wen as the main character searching for some kind of forgiveness for letting the King die while she was protecting him. This was a great book- in so many ways- the characters feel like they are alive- would have liked to see Donnal get more -- I didn't like how the story kept referring to Kira and Romare and how she avoided him to not have feelings for him, but how was Donnal feelin ...more
Feb 17, 2016 Raye rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
An excellent climax to the Twelve Houses series, as seen through the eyes of Cammon, a Reader, one who can sense the emotions and intentions of others. Cammon is assigned to protect the Princess as she seeks a husband, but Gillengaria, her kingdom, is roiled with oncoming civil war, and it will cost Cammon more than he imagines to continue to protect her in the midst of that. Shinn excels in stories of friendship, and the entire Twelve Houses series is a story of extraordinary friendship. Beauti ...more
Jared Paddick
Jul 22, 2014 Jared Paddick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quite a crescendo. As with the rest of the series, Shinn's mechanics are fantastic, and the dialogue is witty and well carried.

I still think the threat of war, as well as the actual war itself, was underplayed, but it was nice to see some direction in this book.

While I admit, I secretly love happy endings, I think Cammon's rise to distinction among the nobility was a little bit of a cop out, even if it was clever and devious.

This was a good series, not great, but at least I don't feel like I was
Eliza Baum
CAMMON (view spoiler)!! *giggle*

I freakin' love these books. LOVE THEM. I'm pretty sure that, at this point, the only thing the author could have done to make me love them less is (view spoiler) - and thank god she didn't do that. I love the style, the character voice, the plot...I just can't praise it highly enough. If I could give this series 10 stars, I would.

This was a fitting conclusion to the series. (view spoi
Jun 19, 2015 Erin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’ll come straight out with it. Mystic and Rider and Reader and Raelynx are my two favorite books of the entire Twelve Houses series. When I feel like reading bits and parts of it, I always reach for these two books.

Cammon is so sweet and innocent. Even his constant mental access to some of the worst thoughts in humanity don’t seem to phase him. It’s like he has a filter that keeps it all out. However, think what it would be like to have that power and to know when someone truly likes or loves y
This contains spoilers for the entire series.

First, I need to complain about Joe Brooks, who reads the audiobooks for this book and Dark Moon Defender: he is AWFUL. He reads Kirra as a shallow ditz (which the first two books go to great lengths to debunk -- I mean, yes, Kirra is effervescent and flippant, but the voice Brooks gives her is a caricature, completely without depth), Donal is suddenly Irish (??), and Cammon is cockney (again: ??). I wish so much that the reader from the first two boo
Mar 13, 2008 Ruth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, fantasy
Not bad; it's the last of the Gillengaria series, which hasn't been my favorite Shinn. Not the least because I refuse to read the one book in this series about a character having an affair with a married man. (I much preferred the Samaria series; I liked the idea of the angels!)

This was a good finale, though. Cammon was one of my favorite characters in the initial group from the first book, and I'm glad he got his HEA*. The war that had hung like a miasma, threatening throughout the entire serie
I was frustrated at the main characters and their bullheaded, morally righteous superiority complex. Interesting questions of the justification for war-- is it worth slaughtering thousands of people just to decide who will sit on the throne? When should we compromise 'true love' and personal desires for strategic advantages?-- are brushed over by making the villains entirely brutal sadistic rapists with an unthinking prejudice against mystics. Really, when Senneth rejected the offer of marrying ...more
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I’ve been writing stories and poems since I was eight years old. My first poem was about Halloween: "What is tonight? What is tonight?/Try to guess and you’ll guess right." Perhaps this inauspicious beginning explains why it took me till I was in my thirties to sell a novel. It occurred to me early on that it might take some time and a lot of tries before I was able to publish any of my creative w ...more
More about Sharon Shinn...

Other Books in the Series

Twelve Houses (5 books)
  • Mystic and Rider (Twelve Houses, #1)
  • The Thirteenth House (Twelve Houses, #2)
  • Dark Moon Defender (Twelve Houses, #3)
  • Fortune and Fate (Twelve Houses, #5)

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“And you're not leaving," she said. "Promise me."

It was as if she had asked him to promise to keep breathing, to notice sunshine, to permit the spinning of the earth. What choice did he have? Even if he left her, she would be camped in his heart, an insistent and willful presence. She would match her strides to his on any journey he ever took; she would lie beside him on any bed.

Amalie, he said, "that's the easiest promise I've ever had to make.”
“Maybe I should keep you in a walled garden so you can't ever leave.'

The image this conjured up was so vivid that for a moment he couldn't think how to answer. He glanced down at her, his mouth open as if to speak, but no words came out. The truth was, he thought, feeling humble, feeling stupid, he didn't think he would mind any more than the raelynx did being kept in perpetual service to the princess. 'Men generally don't make very good pets,' he said at last, and she went off in a peal of laughter.”
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