Matti is a modern day Knight, fighting for his King and the safety of his country. On a rare day off and at a co-workers wedding Matti meets a painter who rocks his world and has Matti acting in ways he never has before. Jamie is astounded at the attraction he feels for Matti, but he grabs the feelings Matti evokes and embraces the moment. But when the war takes a bad turn Matti discovers that he might never have really known the true Jamie, and Jamie has to convince Matti that he is really the only one who knew the true him. Jamie has no choice but to embrace a duty that he turned away from, but with Matti by his side he can be the person that the country needs while being the man he really is in private.
This is a brilliant story in an alternative world, with two strangers acting on their instant attraction leading to a love that can withstand any shock or surprise. Matti has dedicated his life to his King, he is loyal and fiercely dedicated, as a Knight he protects the country and with a war against the Northern invaders he has little time off. Jamie left his old life behind to become a painter, he loves his life of painting and just wants recognition in the Gallery's. When the two meet sparks fly and before they part they ensure they will see each other again. With Matti fighting a war their visits are brief and just as they are getting to know each other better disaster strikes and Matti has difficulty in seeing Jamie as the man he fell in love with.
I loved this story, the way that the story was written so the old world values were brought into the modern day war was brilliant and the attraction between Jamie and Matti seemed to leap off the page. While their relationship started off with a high and while they were happy, they still had things to sort out to become closer and get to know each other better in the short flashes of time they had together. When Jamie's secret come out I was surprised, there was no hint just a sudden revelation. Matti's reaction was brilliant and I loved the way he struggled with the revelation but managed to find a way to help and support Jamie in his desperate time of need.
This is a really good storyline which flows smoothly showing a great couple who manage to conduct a relationship even though they are apart for a large amount of time, it also shows us the difficulties they both face as they come to grips with the truth of their situations and the love and support they both offer the other. We only get a little information on the world they live in, but it reminded me of long days past when counties invaded each other for land. We see both Matti and Jamie stepping into roles they aren't quite comfortable with but with them standing together they dig deep within themselves and shine.
I recommend this if you love alternative worlds where Knights still roam (in armor plated vehicles), painters proving to be more than they first seem, hot sex in snatched moments, a love that can stand a shocking revelation and a great cheeky ending....more
This story is part of a series and must be read in order. Sasha has always completed his orders from the Order of the Crimson Scythe, but when he choose the love of Yarrow and Duncan and let Prince Garith live he was marked and is now hunted by those he called family. Yarrow and Duncan are determined to put a stop to the Crimson Scythe in any way they can to make them leave Sasha alone but the outcome is not what they expected. As Sasha, Yarrow and Duncan plan against the Crimson Scythe Garith has far more worrying concerns as the Thirteen Goddesses priestess turn against him and foreign invaders make war on his kingdom shores.
Holy crap! This series is really beginning to heat up and throw us curve balls all over the place and making us wonder what on Earth could be coming next. As I write this review I wonder what I could tell you that wouldn't ruin the fun of discovery and I have to admit that it is pretty little. If you have been following this epic journey with me then you will know that anything is possible in Yarrow, Duncan and Sasha's world and if you haven't then you really need to do yourself a favor and go get the previous books Ash and Echoes and Ice and Embers.
The blurb really does describe this book pretty well but it leaves out a lot of surprises that leave you open mouthed, and all I can say is I wonder what Augusta Li has in stock for Duncan because Sasha's was a doozy. While I won't go into the precise details (read the book) or really even the vague details (read the book) :-) I will just cover what is in the blurb. Sasha, Duncan and Yarrow make plans to get the Crimson Scythe to back off, they have Corbin (mage assassin) assisting to locate the leaders but it is much harder to locate them than originally thought. Garith is facing heavy opposition from the priestesses and when war comes to his shore he has to make harsh decisions, he also becomes much closer with his bodyguard Sander on a journey to slay a beast in the hopes of saving his queen and child.
Hmmm what else can I tell you... well, we see Sai (Yarrow's Emiri friend) who plays a pivotal role in this adventure, we have surprises and shocks, gauntlets being thrown down and stomped on. We see allegiances developing and friendships forged, we have love that is stronger than the will of the gods and we have a burning need for the truth that is festering. There are scenes of epic battle, epic bloodbaths, epic magic and epic sex but with Yarrow, Duncan and Sasha can you really say you are surprised?
I have to recommend this story if you love high fantasy, epic storylines, fantastic characters, love and loss, hard times and lives lost, glimpses of happiness and hope and an ending that lets you know there is still more to come....more
This story is part of a series and must be read in order. Duncan and Sasha are trying to settle into life at Windwake, but it is a struggle for both of them when many of Duncan’s vassals are against them. Sasha’s assassin ways are frowned upon and Duncan’s refusal to reward the conspiring vassals cause unrest, Duncan and Sasha cross swords when Sasha seeks to protect Duncan. Yarrow has left the men he loves behind to seek a way to final part with the creature within him, but it is far harder than he ever imagined to even finding any clues, but his one slim hope is an old map and journal and with his friend, Sai, by his side he sets off. When Duncan and Sasha learn of Yarrow’s perilous journey they race to be by his side, but what faces them all when they return home could end up destroying what the ancient being couldn’t.
Whoo *wipes sweat off brow* what can you say about a book that can weave a tale exceptionally well, while leading you in different directions and dangerous adventures… brilliant!! We re-join Duncan, Sasha and Yarrow as they love, argue and despair of the circumstances as they all try to do what is best for them and their country. Each and every character is exactly as we remember them, Duncan is still devoted to what is right, Sasha still loves being an assassin and Yarrow is still a confusing jumble, as they progress in this story each man has his fears about the other two really accepting them and those fears are hard to put away when the politics of the country is determined to interfere.
The adventures that they face are astounding, the danger inherent and their love tested. I would love to say that we get all the answers that we want, but Augusta Li leaves us with more questions, and I can’t wait for the answers. We finally discover who the creature was in its previous life, we discover the truth of the Thirteen Goddesses and Yarrow faces up to his past, but it doesn’t end there as bargains are struck and new discoveries are made. I love this epic adventure and it’s incredible descriptions, I hate the circumstances that our men fall into, but adore the devotion they show to each other and I really can’t wait to see what happens next to our trio of characters.
I have to recommend this story to those who love high fantasy, bloody battles, escaping port, strange lands, incredible turns, dangerous sea journeys, binding love and an ending that makes you secretly grin in delight....more
Robin has been banished to a monastery after being caught with his hose around his ankles. His father was ever in despair, as he was never manly enough, but pushing his marriage early his father hopes it will make a man of him. Ben is a manly knight who Robin tends to when he is injured. When the time comes for them to leave, Ben to his home and Robin to get married, Ben takes things into his own hands to try to stop the marriage.
This is a very good medieval historical type story which is well written with very good characters and a great story-line and plot. Robin seems to have a very submissive personality that has been abused and trod upon by others, Ben expects men to behave in a certain way and Robin will act that way because Ben will train him. Robin is a lovely man and it was nice to see him develop into a more confident man. Ben, on the other hand, I wasn’t sure of because, at first, he seemed really nice then he changed and it made me not keen on him. But he came through in the end and turned out to be a proper knight in shining armor.
Now the sex is hot, in a primal medieval way and we do see quite a bit of kink because of Robin’s conditioning when he was younger. Robin also keeps secrets because he is ashamed but they keep being exposed which causes problems with Ben. Ben also has his own problem because he thinks that some things are just for women, which doesn’t make Robin to happy. There’s also some action in the fighting department which is quite cool.
So I recommend this for those who love medieval knights, hot men, a great story, sword fights, hot sex and a great ending....more
Yarrow is called upon to escort his cousin to his wedding. It is something that he would rather not do, but for his aunt he will. It is a journey that brings him into contact with Duncan, a Knight who thinks little of him and Sasha, an assassin who could end up betraying them. It is a journey that brings danger, betrayal, political intrigue and exposes secrets and all three men have to band together to survive and expose the truth.
This is an absolute must read if you love high fantasy. Whoop, so happy! *little dance*. Yarrow is a magic user, the most powerful magic user of the time. But, Yarrow has a secret that makes him dangerous and he can’t trust anyone. So, he travels by himself keeping a distance from those around him… until he meets Duncan and then Sasha. But how can he tell them his secret without losing them both? Duncan is a Knight, he will do his duty and make sure his charges reach their destination, but Yarrow calls to something inside him and then Sasha does as well. But, he hates Sasha for how he conducts his life and now Duncan is confused about his forbidden feelings. Sasha can’t love, it was trained out of him at a young age, but Yarrow causes him to begin to question what he has learnt and Duncan drives him crazy and it ends up making Sasha make a choice that shouldn’t be a choice. After all, he is a cold-blooded assassin.
So, this is high fantasy at its highest and it is beautifully done. The world building is great, the backgrounds of the characters are well done and give us enough information to relate to them and the storyline and plot is wonderful. Although Yarrow is a powerful magic user, none of his magical scenes are overdone and there are even times when you think, he could have used more. But, as you learn, there is a high price he has to pay if he uses the most powerful magic. So, you can understand why he tries to limit what he does. The main storyline is quite simple get the prince to his wedding. But, it is quickly quite apparent that there are plans afoot to derail the wedding and then the betrayals begin and the three men have to band together to ensure the prince lives and to save the kingdom.
There is a lot going on in this book with some interesting twists and turns. There are secrets that come out, political intrigue, betrayal, murders, traps, pursuits, battles, confrontations, lies and love. The relationship between Yarrow, Sasha and Duncan is complex and far from easy. There is plenty of hot sex, but these three men each have their own problems that they have to work through before they can fully accept the others. and Yarrow’s problem is a doozy. You do not want to miss the fighting scenes or the battle scenes because they are brilliant, all the attention to detail was great and I loved it (have I mentioned I’m a bit Blood Thirsty). I loved each of the MCs as they were all completely different, with completely different values and attitudes towards things, so much potential conflict between them.
This is not the book to read if you want a nice light romance. The romance is hard going, but well-earned. The storyline is intertwined with danger and betrayal from all directions, the characters all have problems but aren’t too angsty and the action is great. The ending is one that leaves you wishing that the next book was already published so you can continue the journey.
So, I recommend this to anyone who loves high fantasy, difficult romances, hot sex, difficult journeys, betrayal, secrets, lies, action, battles, some bloody gore and three very intriguing heroes… oh, and an ending that will make you grit your teeth and scream silently for the next book....more