Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Dark Heart (Tales of Amaranth, #1)” as Want to Read:
Dark Heart (Tales of Amaranth, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Dark Heart (Tales of Amaranth #1)

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  674 ratings  ·  77 reviews
In Amaranth, the Wayfarers' Guild attracts all kinds of custom. When Lucan the mage walks into the stable yard with a lame horse in the rain, slave boy Tam runs to serve him -- and soon Tam wants to do nothing else. Ever.

Lucan is demanding, ruthless, devastating, in bed and out: everything Tam ever yearned for in a master. He's also master of the darkest arts, and not blin
ebook, 150 pages
Published September 23rd 2008 by Loose Id
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Dark Heart, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Dark Heart

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,562)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
This is not a romance.

But it's not a dark, nasty story either.

Dark Heart is something else altogether.

In the world of Amaranth, a caste-system is firmly intact. Slaves are regarded as 'soulless' and are more or less on the same footing as domestic animals. This means that from our perspective, the way the 23 year old Tam -- who was once a petty thief until he was caught and collared -- is treated seems harsh. Ever since he is a slave at a guild house, he is fed only once a day, whipped every now
not much in the way of story, but compelling anyway.

I found myself utterly revolted by slave culture, and the behavior of sundry characters up to and including Master Lucan made me want to throw up.

The sex is hot, if a little brief.

Whipping isn't my kink, but the writing is competent, and the setting interesting.

Wish there'd been more to the story than this, though.
Rachel Haimowitz
Romance? Absolutely not. Erotica? Definitely. BDSM? Also absolutely not; no, this is dubcon at best, abuse, and a slave in an absolutely unvarnished world (good for the author for not painting real slavery with a pretty brush) grabbing on to the slightest hint of happiness he can cling to--violent and callous as it often was--and calling it love. That being said, it was also hot and remarkably well written. The prose is artful, the worldbuilding was brilliant, the plot secondary to the character ...more
Mar 07, 2011 Bookwatcher rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: BDSM (D/s) fans
Whip fetish can be overwhelming sometimes...
[image error]

So what can I say about this AMAZING D/S (Dominance and submission) story?

Collared submissive slave: check
Strong mysterious master: check
Full immersion in cold bath more than one time was needed: certainly CHECK

All book is (YEY) the slave point of view, Tam.
I can tell much. Tam will talk to you, and his submissive mind is perfect! He will described the dark and mysterious mage arriving to the guild of Amaranth, and with time (more or l
Don Bradshaw
Reviewed on Hearts On Fire...

Wow, just wow, this rather dark and harsh book was amazing in its treatment of the reality of total slavery. To be a slave in Amaranth is to be as replaceable as a piece of paper and worth just about as much. Tam is a slave in the Wayfarer's Guild house and while being owned by a guild house may seem like a better than average place to be owned, it is not. A slave is only worth as much as they are capable of doing and the slave quick
Vivian ♪(┌・。・)┌
Despite the cover and title, this is a decidedly un-dark read. I suppose as far as Gaymance goes, it's also a bit of a strange read. It's romance, yet I'm not sure you can soundly classify as that. When it comes to slavery in M/M Romance, there's usually that certain point in the book when social class, differences or anything really don't matter in the face of their love.In that respect, Dark Heart is different. The gap between their social classes is there and even at the end of the book, it's ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
As some people have said in reviews, this is not a typical m/m romance.

Amaranth is a place where there are only 2 kinds of people - slaves and the free. Slaves seem to be valued, in as much as they do vital work, but easily replaced if they die, and pretty much on a social level with domesticated animals.
Tam is a Slave in a guildhouse, and luckily for him he has a very submissive mentality, and so it seems to work out for him. He lives very much in the moment, which I liked about him. He thinks
This is a terrific book for those interested in m/m erotica in a fantasy setting. Amaranth is another world, where slavery is commonplace, and magic exists. The blurb for the book is pretty clear about the plot, so I won't try to summarize any more on that.

From the very first paragraph, I knew this was an author I could trust to tell a good story. Although I would consider this a character driven story, the plot was still very well scripted, and the pace kept me focused on not just finding out m
Master and Slave - this was disturbing on many levels mostly for the ingenious worldbuilding. Amaranth isn't our world, our morale and ethics in medieval garb. It's an entirely different world, with a different morale where human slaves really are nothing more than soulless beings. Consequently, the relationship between the magician and the slave is in the beginning more something like a master and his pet dog. I could easily relate to Tam falling in love with Lucan, from the way Tam sees himsel ...more
Dark Heart by Thom Lane was an absolutely magic fantasy read. Excellent world building with a sexy, servile slave boy and hot, badass mage. I loved this book and cannot believe I’ve not picked it up before now. The cover alone is enough to send me back for a second look. hehe. I loved the world the author created, even though I periodically wanted the slaves to rise up, the whole in service thing did rather appeal to my kink. I thought the ending was well done too and not wrapped up in a bow. Ha ...more
This was a great read. It was like a kinky David Eddings. The world that was created was believable with no consistency issues to shatter the illusion. Although the sex was graphic & frequent, it was so intrinsic to the story that it avoided being gratuitous. I would highly recommend this book for lovers of fantasy...even if you aren't a lover of BDSM, this book works as a whole & you can't imagine it without the sexual slavery. If you liked this book you might also enjoy books written b ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The writing was excellent and engaging but the subject matter was so hard for me to read that I couldn't give it a higher rating. I didn't realize when I started that it was going to be about slaves and how they were treating worse than animals. It must say something that I couldn't stop reading it though.
Nichole (Dirty H)
4.5 stars

What is it about these kinds of stories that makes me so squirmy?? (In a good way that is.) I may never know.
Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
4.5 stars

This book wasn't anything like I thought it would be. I thought it was going to be so dark that I might have even felt a little dirty after reading it but it surprisingly wasn't. Lol.

I will say that I don't consider this BDSM. Not even light BDSM (view spoiler) and it's not even rea
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
I have to admit that after the first chapter and a half I thought I wouldn't like this story at all. Tam is a slave in a world where people are taught that slaves have no soul. Master Lucan is a mage whom Tam desires more than anything else. The mage doesn't treat Tam with a special regard, he is not gentle or caring, there's nothing of that. Tam is a tool he uses for his pleasure and to perform the material tasks a slave must perform. Nothing romantic.

It was difficult to accept Tam's devotion f
Alex Akira
This compelling and entertaining read held me in its grip within the first paragraph. Written in a sparse, but lyrical timbre, each sentence provided a compelling glimpse of the larger story leaving me hungrily gobbling up passages, held captive by both the story and the charming manner in which it is delivered. I was barely through the initial chapter before I was gleefully applauding the fact that I had four more Tales of Amaranth books yet to read. Yay me!

I immediately likened Amaranth to one
Lexi Ander
I don't know whether to give this a 3 or a 5 so I settled on a 4. The first half of this book was slow and then you are thrown into the last half abruptly and things pick up. Lucan is a mage and mages are feared. He comes to stay at the guild house when his horse goes laim on his way out of the city. Tam is a slave who serves the guild house The guild house is under attach from an unknown enemy and Lucan is hired to find out who.

This is told in the first person, which I don't mind. So this is to
Karen K
Wow - just wow. I've never read anything remotely like this book and though, I've also never read anything about slaves either, I can honestly say this book was fantastic. It was so well-written, so well plotted, the characters were enthralling for both their rawness and their heart.

Tam was such an abused little guy really, but having him be so accepting to what his life was all about was both heart-breaking and beautiful. Lucan was a strong, manly-man and I loved that he was able to show his h
There is a dark part of me that loves stories that are about losing, relinquishing, or never having control. This is 'slave-fic' and although it has strong D/s and S/M themes, it is essentially about a non-consensual relationship. Not for everyone's tastes, but for those who enjoy this fantasy, the prose is tight and lush, the world-building flawless, and the story behind the kink interesting and well-executed. Among my top five in the m/m genre.
This is the sort of story where you just have to go with it, you have to let your imagination lead you along and accept the fact that it's all fantasy and smoke and dreams. Of course it's not real, that's the whole point. But it's so delicious!
This was a very clever world and I enjoyed reading about Tam very much! What an eager guy he was! And Master Luke was suitably aloof and very smexy! Great story!
This story is thoroughly engaging and wonderfully scripted, incorporating a vibrant BDSM world with fantasy elements. The characters are interesting and captivating and the sexual aspects of the world pale in comparison to the mystery and world building dynamics. Although the world building and characters had problems, the darker edge will entice readers and those who enjoy fantasy mixed with BDSM won't be able to put this book down.

As the blurb suggests, the story is about a house slave Tam who
Shira Anthony
Delicious! I guess I'm just a sucker for fantasy, and this novella was a great quick read. Excellent writing, interesting plot and fascinating universe. The only thing I can complain about is that I wanted MORE.

MILD SPOILERS:(view spoiler)
Jimmy Hanson
Not my usual taste in books, but interesting for all of that. ^_^ The actions between master and slave is not the sweet-romance that can be build and made up within other novels but rather a bit more true-to-form.

Tam gets punished often and without leniency. He even at times invites the hits - quipping something he knows will get him cuffed or lingering where he shouldn't and getting a strapping for it. He's broken as a slave and yet has a will within that caste of slavery. There was another sla
Mel Bradley
This tale was a different type of read for me – and a completely different take on the Master/slave realtionship. In all honestly, I was struggling to adjust to their interactions, as there was nothing consensual about the pairing. However, the characters were drawn together and their relationship developed to one that was caring and consentual at the end. I was intrigued by both the setting and the special powers, which was a surprise for me, and both added significant value to the story.

This i
Good, enjoyable fantasy slave/master fiction.

Tam, The Slave, pretty much played to the stereotype, but somehow still came of as a pretty adorable and likable character. Lucas, The Master, well, he fells a bit too flat, his characterization was definitely too formulaic. I would have preferred to get a bit clearer picture of him, his talents and motivations.

I don't think this story actually entails bdsm, but it definitely is a slave fic.

The world the story was set in was fascinating and the myst
Sep 25, 2009 Rhianon rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of mild BDSM
Shelves: m-m, slave-fic
Eloquently written first person POV. Lane does a commendable job of showing the inner workings of a submissive's mind; how he found that place, and where his private preferences lay. The power play between slave and master is flawlessly fashioned -- the manipulation of control versus its equally manipulative counterpart of surrender. Lane's world-building is virtually effortless and subtle, no info-dumping; it's done through circumstances, and conversations, and setting. A writer with definitive ...more
I don't know what people like about this book. To me it was like watching an accident: you want to turn away but you can't.
Generally I am not against BDSM or slave-romance but this one turns out to be ridiculous. Although the first book is morally totally off, the second book wins the medal. "I love him - so I am gonna starve him a few days and whip him. Just for asking a few questions." .... makes sense!
Basically, in the world of Amaranth, there is no possibility of kindness, devotion or equa
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 52 53 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Anchored (Belonging, #1)
  • Wings (Wings, #1)
  • Bloodraven
  • Tribute
  • Spoils of War (Spoils of War, #1)
  • Chaos Magic (Gods and Chaos, #1)
  • Concubine
  • Remastering Jerna (Remastering Jerna, #1)
  • Out of the Woods (Tarin's World, #1)
  • Uneven
  • Jesse's Story (The Slave Breakers, #2)
  • At His Throat, A Promise
  • Bound and Determined
  • Shattered Heart
  • Duck! (Avian Shifters, #1)
  • Some Kind of Stranger (Blue Ruin, #1)
Author Thom Lane is an English writer who has published romances and erotica as well as fantasies and other books under other names. In his tales of Amaranth, he is combining as many of those genres as possible…
More about Thom Lane...
Healing Heart (Tales of Amaranth, #2) Hidden Heart (Tales of Amaranth, #3) White Flag (French Wine, #1) Runaway Heart (Tales of Amaranth, #4) Red Light (French Wine, #2)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »