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Prince of Air and Darkness

(The Darkest Court #1)

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3.96  ·  Rating details ·  1,545 ratings  ·  298 reviews
Phineas Smith has been cursed with a power no one could control.

Roark Lyne is his worst enemy and his only hope.


The only human student at Mather’s School of Magick, Phineas Smith has a target on his back. Born with the rare ability to tap into unlimited magick, he finds both Faerie Courts want his allegiance—and will do anything to get it.

They don’t realize he can’t levita
...more
Kindle Edition, 327 pages
Published February 25th 2019 by Carina Press
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M.A. Grant There’s an important detail about the Knighthood in Chapter 13, when Roark and Mab are talking. Roark specifies who would lose themselves to the Knigh…moreThere’s an important detail about the Knighthood in Chapter 13, when Roark and Mab are talking. Roark specifies who would lose themselves to the Knighthood. I don’t want to spoil things, but if you want the specific wording, send me a message and I’ll let you know that way. (less)
M.A. Grant There’s an A.E. Housman poem I love called “Her Strong Enchantments Failing” which refers to “the Queen of air and darkness,” and which inspired me to…moreThere’s an A.E. Housman poem I love called “Her Strong Enchantments Failing” which refers to “the Queen of air and darkness,” and which inspired me to twist the title as a reference for Roark and his royal position in my book. The Seelie and Unseelie Courts are old legends though, as is Queen Mab, which lets tons of authors play with retellings or adaptations of the tales. Not sure if this helps, but it’s what I can speak to in the titling process for my release. (less)

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Average rating 3.96  · 
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☆ Todd
Dec 24, 2018 rated it really liked it

I love a good M/M romantic fantasy novel and, for the most part, this one delivered.

Phineas Smith (Finn to his friends, Smith to his annoyingly-frustrating and critical arch nemesis) was a human studying at Mather's School of Magick, about to graduate, but still unable to control his connection to a powerful and dangerous ley line.

Previous humans able to access the ley line had all burned out like roman candles, not enough of them left even to bury, so as he was in his final year at college, he'
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Optimist ♰King's Wench♰
Kind of a mixed bag.

I didn't hate it but there were a few things that left me feeling confused, things about the plot and/or world building that I could never reconcile.

For instance, Finn has been attending Mather’s School of Magick for the past SIX YEARS and cannot control said magic? At all.



That seems like a no brainer from a school with School of Magick in the title, doesn't it? I guess I kind of had Hogwarts in mind with objective being to train its students how to both control and u
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Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
*3.5 stars*

I was really looking forward to Prince of Air and Darkness by M.A. Grant thanks to a ton of glowing reviews, and I'm happy to say I wasn't disappointed. However, it killed me a little inside to know the potential of the story and that it was this close to being amazing.

I found the pacing and the plotting to be really compelling and I stayed up WAY past my bedtime to read. I finished the story in day, which is always a good sign for me. However, my niggles just kept on coming while I w
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Renée
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
MM Fantasy is a hard subgenre for an author to get correct for my tastes. I say that because, as a reader, I don't have a lot of stories that I've 4- or 5-starred.

My first read for Grant delivered so many good things though. I quite enjoyed this book.

Finn and Roarke are students at Mather’s School of Magick, but they are both in their early 20s. The book didn't read as YA though. There is a lot of maturity in the characters that I was pleasantly surprised by.

Finn is human, but born to exceptio
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Jenni Lea
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A delightful surprise

I went into this book with zero expectations and was immediately drawn in by the artful wordcraft. This is an author to watch. I can't wait to read the next in this series.
Deborah
3.5*

Firstly I have to say I usually avoid books about the Fae. I’ve just never read one I really liked but something about the blurb for this book just pulled me in.

I also didn’t realise this was a YA read and while I’m well out of the age range I have enjoyed a lot of YA reads in the past.

The books itself.

My first thought on finishing is that I’d been cheated.
Now all the reviews I’ve seen for this book have been really good, 4* plus. This seems to point to the problem being me. I’m not ruling
...more
haletostilinski
WOW! Oh man, I was not expecting to love this as much as I did. I honestly don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't this.

Phineas Smith or Finny (or Finn as only Roark calls him) is a human in a magic world, as he can tap into the ley lines on earth and conjure magic, even if he can rarely, if ever, control it and it can be explosive when he can get it to even work in the first place.

And his nemesis is Fae prince Roark Lyne, has been for the past 6 years, even as he can't help but be attr
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Cadiva
Feb 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Fantasy has always been my first love and it's fantastic to be able to add new authors to my list who can turn out fully compelling worlds with characters I desperately root for and fall in love with that have an MM romance at the heart, and with this one M.A. Grant has managed to all that.

It's a young adult romance, although Roark is ageless as an Unseelie Prince, Phineas aka Finn is only just 21 and, while he might be the most powerful human on the planet, he's not exactly in control of either
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fleurette
I found this book by accident and pretty enjoyed it.

The best part of this story are definitely the characters – Finn and Roark. They are quite developed and unquestionably likeable. There are not that many stories about the Unseelie and Roark makes a very interesting hero. Finn is a good match for him. I really like that Roark is to some extend more involved in this relationship than Finn. There is fine dynamics between them.

Still, this story would use some more world development. The world cre
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Sue✨
Jun 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book was really entertaining. I loved Finn and Roark so much and was really invested in their relationship. The story itself was ok but the writing style could use some improvement. The ending was a bit unclear which was frustrating. I hope in the next books things will work out with no major damage to finn whom I dearly love !
☙ nemo ❧
I am, with every single molecule of my being, in LOVE with this book.

This is the fae book you've been waiting for. I promise you.

I need everyone else to read this immediately so I have people to fanboy over this with. I need it to become the next phenomenon. I am absolutely fucking obsessed.

Absolutely gorgeous writing, combined with a compelling plot and beautifully flawed, complex characters make this book so outstanding. The author has taken the age-old story of the Seelie and Unseelie cour
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Deborah
Dec 12, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5*

Firstly I have to say I usually avoid books about the Fae. I’ve just never read one I really liked but something about the blurb for this book just pulled me in.

I also didn’t realise this was a YA read and while I’m well out of the age range I have enjoyed a lot of YA reads in the past.

The books itself.

My first thought on finishing is that I’d been cheated.
Now all the reviews I’ve seen for this book have been really good, 4* plus. This seems to point to the problem being me. I’m not ruling
...more
Gabi
3* for the world-building. I found it lacking. How do the Fae look like? Do they have pointy ears. I know from TV shows and other books that's how they should look like, but here? Other than the creatures who attacked Finn, there was only one guy mentioned who has hooves for feet. But that's it. What about the others?
Also, do humans know that this magical world exist? Finn's parents do. But how did they discover Finn has powers, how did they know to call it the ley line, how did they learn about
...more
Maggie
I received an advanced reading copy of Prince of Air and Darkness in exchange for an honest review.

This was a 4-star read for me.
It was just what I needed to read at the moment.


What can I say about this book?
I loved it, from the very beginning until the end, and it left me craving for the next book.
The synopsis gave me Carry On (by Rainbow Rowell) vibes, the story had a similar vibe but the story itself was completely different.
I was never bored with this book and I enjoyed every second of it
...more
Rox
Nov 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
4 stars for pure enjoyment, the fact that I really could not put this down, and the glorious pining.

Run toward hope.

I love fae stories and this was no exception. I also love a badass prince and enemies to lovers. It's not hard to make me happy. This one made me real happy.

Phineas is the human snowflake with a power that will kill him. One that he can't control.
Roarke has been his roommate for 6 years and has been keeping an eye on him since the beginning. He didn't mean to fall in love with hi
...more
Kathleen
Jul 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
3.75 stars

A good start to this series, but flawed. The primary issue for me was the obvious lack of adequate world building. This story, with its great bones, deserved some stellar world building. I also wasn’t fond of the nonlinear delivery of the storyline or the active voice. I sincerely hope the author thought to beef up the second book with the details the first book lacked.
Julia
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m, favorites
Loved it! Angsty, enemies-to-friends-to-lovers, standard Fae shenanigans, Seelie and Unseelie courts fighting, “magick”, and lots of action in between ☺️
Alison
Phineas (Finn) Smith is a human at Mathers School of Magick, in his final year he has still to learn how to control his rare and unusual ability to tap into unlimited magick (I have to confess I found that out from the blurb as I don't think it was described like that in the novel). All known humans with his ability have died young, unable to control their power, ripped apart by the magic.

Unseelie Prince Roark Lyne, third son of Queen Mab, is Finn's room-mate and he always seems to be hanging ar
...more
Micah
Apr 26, 2019 rated it liked it
This book WAS DAMN CLOSE to being 5 star, very easily, but the ending ruined it for me. At first, this book read like a textbook. The writing was super stiff & I almost stopped reading BUT IT EVENTUALLY got extremely intriguing & I couldn’t put it down. The world building, the romance, the few action scenes we get were all great. 1 of the best things about this book was to see Phineas & Roark go from enemies to boo’d up. But this is also where the problem is for me. The pacing in the beginning o ...more
LOLA
Really enjoyed this one. Magic and royalty. Young men coming into their own. Slow burn. Hot moments. A good mystery.
Also, a few bad guys. This book has all the things I like .
You could call this an YA. But that didn't even register to me.
Finn and the"PAD" make a hard won couple.
Ley Lines are all Finn. Then working with his roommate to learn control.
This tale goes in a few different directions. Well written and entertaining.
(Given a copy for an honest review)
(Thanks)
(NetGalley)
J1B
May 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is my current "cardio book" so I'm getting through it as fast/often as I get to my cardio (mileage may GREATLY vary!) but I'm about 75% done with this and it has been excellent so far. Baring any unforeseen triggers (e.g. the fae prince's wife returns from her trip... gag) this will turn out to be one of the best MM I've read this year.
Santy
You know how you finish a book and before you even think to write a review you go and click "Want To Read" on the next book in the series even though its unpublished? That's EXACTLY what happened to me here! I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

This was my first book by the author and I must say I was impressed. For like 99% of the book, I was happy with the direction the book was taking with pacing, dialogue, angst, characterisation and everything else. Finn and Lyne made the best enemies-to-lovers a
...more
Stephanie   GooglyEyes
I do believe this is my first MA Grant book and it's a great find.

The idea that this powerful magical "let line" finds a human host and usually burns through them by a young age but Finny (Phineas) has already passed up that age and is at a magical school tryin to learn how to control it.

His roommate, Roarke, and him don't seem to get on. Roarke is constantly saving Fin from all kinds of monsters that are seeking out his power but then he insults Fin immediately after to put some distance betw
...more
Lori
Jul 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I totally enjoyed this. I wasn't quite sure at first because it seemed to be going nowhere for a bit but then the story started progressing and it became very interesting.

(view spoiler)

Also, I listened to this one, and John Solo was not really working for
...more
M.A. Grant
Mar 01, 2019 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: my-books
PRINCE OF AIR AND DARKNESS is available for a time in Kindle Unlimited thanks to Carina Press!
https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B07GB7WD2G/

AUTHOR’S NOTE
I’ve had several readers contact me, worried about Finny’s fate. If you’re nervous, I’d suggest rereading lucky Chapter 13. Thanks for messaging me about it, and I hope this clue helps!
...more
Carol (bookish_notes)
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
GUYS. I love this book so much??? You guys don't even understand. This book came out of nowhere and hit me square in the feels. WHAT THE HELL.

You have a soft human (Phineas, also known as Finny or Finn) who can’t control his tie to the ley line and has monsters coming at him from all sides, and then there’s the princely fae (Roark) who will do everything to protect Finny whilst denying he has feelings for him.

Trigger warnings for torture scenes.

So. I will say that the cover DOES NOT match the to
...more
Amy
Dec 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher for the chance to read this novel!

Title: Prince of Air and Darkness
Author: M.A Grant
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Release date: 25th February 2019
My Rating: 4 stars 
Trigger/content warnings: Violence and gore, sex scenes.

I recently found this book while scrolling through 2019 book releases on Goodreads and I instantly added it to my TBR. I was so happy when I saw this on NetGalley and even happier when I received the approved notification!

This story i
...more
Vee
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received an advanced reading copy of Prince of Air and Darkness in exchange for an honest review.

This was one of my most anticipated books of 2019 so imagine my happiness when I was sent an ARC?!

Why was I anticipating this book so much?
Three words: Adult. Queer. Fantasy.

Of which we are woefully lacking. I am constantly hunting, pleading, begging for more well-written queer relationships, that are front and centre, in fantasy. This was the exact type of book I had been looking for. I feel lik
...more
Sarah
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
I really enjoyed this and am so looking forward to reading the 2nd book. It reminded me a little of Laurell K Hamilton, minus the pron and also a bit of Holly Black so if you’re keen on them I highly recommend this one. I liked the world building, the characters and there was loads of good tension. Such a good read.
Shirley
Feb 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5-4 stars... but it was an upward curve ;)
This one... grew on me? I wasn't sure at first and it took me a lot longer to get into than it normally takes me, but once it grabbed me, it wouldn't let go... Like "staying up until 1 am so I could finish" not letting go...
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168 followers
M.A. Grant has always loved reading and writing, but fell in love with the romance genre when she started working at an independent bookstore in high school. After meeting her husband in college, they began a steady northward migration and are now happily living in the rugged beauty of Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. When she’s not calling out to passing ravens or making a cup of tea, she’s writing dark ...more

Other books in the series

The Darkest Court (3 books)
  • The Marked Prince (The Darkest Court, #2)
  • The Iron Crown (The Darkest Court, #3)

News & Interviews

“Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.” That’s Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani human rights...
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“Funny how such innocuous details—the red blip of a voicemail, the single-page letter from a bank requesting a meeting to discuss the foreclosure, the subtle appearance of moving boxes in the garage—can upend your world. Unlike monsters or faeries or kidnappers, you never see these details coming. They don't draw blood or leave visible scars or bruises. You can't fight against them or use magick to fix them. You can only wait to see if you survive them.” 1 likes
“You are not indebted to us because you were born. Your life is your own. However long or short you decide that is.” 1 likes
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