KJ Charles, 2013
Premise: Lucien Varney has returned from abroad to take up the unwanted mantle of Lord Crane after the mysterious deaths of his father and older brother. But someone doesn't want any of his line left alive, and to fight magic he'll need some unconventional help from a young magician...
This book was delightful. It has no pretentions of great “literature”, and it flirts with unreality as most romance does. It was a joy to read, and I've already bought the sequel.
This book handily manages what I consider to be a core element of the best romances: give me two interesting characters who are even more interesting together. Lucien and Stephen both have interesting backstories, interesting lives, and great chemistry.
Lucien, as the black-sheep/vagabond returning to England after a long time abroad, is light-hearted on the surface, despite the fact that it's his life and fortune at stake. Stephen, while mostly professional and quiet, struggles both with a dark history with the Crane family and the burden of his talent.
The adventure/mystery plot is playfully interwoven with the romance. I devoured this book in less than 24 hours, I was sucked into this story to a depth I haven’t experienced in a while.
It was start-to-end fun and incredibly charming. I didn’t know I needed more LGBT fantasy romance in my life, but I’m glad this is the one I stumbled into.
4 Stars - A Great Book