Publishing Date: February 20
Genre: fantasy, young adult, adult
Prince Corin has been chosen to free the dragons from their bondage to the Empire, but dragons aren’t big on directions. They have given him some of their power, but none of their knowledge. No one, not the dragons nor their riders, is even sure what keeps the dragons in the Empire’s control.
Tam, sensible daughter of a well-respected doctor, had no idea before she arrived in the capital that she is a Seer, gifted with visions. When the two run into each other (quite literally) in the library, sparks fly and Corin impulsively asks Tam to dinner. But it’s not all happily ever after. Never mind that the prince isn’t allowed to marry a commoner: war is coming to Caithen.
Torn between Corin’s quest to free the dragons and his duty to his country, the lovers must both figure out how to master their powers in order to save Caithen. With a little help from a village of secret wizards and a rogue dragonrider, they just might pull it off.
Though educated in politics and skilled at charming the courtiers, Prince Corin would rather be out with the soldiers, protecting and defending his kingdom. Tam, sent by her father to be with her sister-in-law at court, would much rather read and explore the gardens than wile away with idle gossip. A chance encounter in the library draws Corin and Tam together, an intense love at first sight that changes the course of Caithen’s future forever. With Corin’s quest to free the dragons and prevent destruction of his kingdom, combined with Tam’s rising powers of Seeing the future, not all is splendid for the lovers. The fate of the kingdom rests heavily on their shoulders.
While the ARC did not have a map to help with the geography and politics and names dumped within the first few chapters, Anne Leonard helpfully linked to a map that was immensely useful while reading the book. When the final print is published, readers may often turn to it for footing. After the first few chapters of groundwork, the fun aspects of the story begins — and it was quite thrilling!
Tam is such a powerful female character, I couldn’t help but fall in love with her from the beginning. Her love for Corin does not dampen her strength at any moment — she’s quite an individual, very unique and confident and a breath of fresh air to read (and, apparently, fresh air for Corin too!). Corin was entertaining, clearly burdened by his duties but still young and playful without being rude or misleading. The two characters complimented one another, which is excellent because they certainly rushed everything in war-torn haste.
Name-dropping and info-dumping at the beginning of books tend to bother me, but it was key for this fantasy. Without it, the rest of the book would be lost on the reader. Pay attention to the name, the politics, the events, because it all comes back later to haunt and threaten Corin. It made the world feel real, almost like an Arthurian legend. Throw in the dragons and the hidden magic, and it’s quite an adventure!
A very difficult book to put down, exciting from start to finish with war, magic, battles, love, and courtly amusements!
Thank you, Edelweiss, for providing this book from Viking for review!