...and now for something completely different. A different read for me as this was my first foray into fantasy and a different kind of story for Kaje Harper compared to her previous works to date.
I was a little sceptical about this story first as I haven't tried fantasy in the M/M genre to date. I LOVED it. Kaje's writing soon drew me into her fantasy world and didn't let me go for the whole visit to this faraway place with sorcerers, kings, ghosts, mages and magic.
Lyon is a recluse, possessed by demons after his time as a sorcerer's apprentice after his old master Meldov calling forth a wraith and its taking control. Although Lyon manages to stop the happening before it possesses him totally a part still remains within him.
One day Tobin a messenger from the king turns up out of the blue and commands that the king wishes the presence of Lyon. Tobin is an old childhood friend of Lyon's and was delighted to find him after many years thinking he was dead. Lyon is obviously reticent but gives in to Tobin's tenacity and they start out for Riverrun. The king needs someone to translate an ancient language no longer spoken and this is Lyon's speciality. The king's mages have summoned a very old ghost who can give them a vital tactical advantage over the R'gin, a folk that is preparing to attack Riverrun. There he takes the brave step and lets himself be fused with the ghost from the past in order to communicate with him.
Obvioulsy I could write more about the plot, but I think that will suffice now to give you a taste of things to come. I loved the character Lyon, alone and fighting with his past and demons. For him this is a journey where he will learn he is stronger than he thinks. With the support and love that Tobin gives he grows stronger everday, doing things he never would have done until now. Everyday being a small triumph. Tobin is strong but gentle and never forces Lyon to do things he is not comfortable with. This thread runs through the book where he supports and encourages Lyon.
In this world it as OK to be gay, or as it is called in Riverrun "fay" I loved this term and smiled when it was first coined. This creates again the feeling that you are in a fanatsy world. A little bit like Lord of The Rings meets M/M romance. Kaje creates a whole fantasy world full of vivid characters and an adventure that keeps you on your toes.
This is a well rounded fantasy story with the amazing fact that it is free under the banner of the M/M Romance Group's LHNB series. It is novel length and written in what must been an incredibly tight deadline. Unbelievable.