Tuesday, August 5, 2014

"Lord of the Fading Lands (Tairen Soul #1)" by C.L. Wilson

Cover from Goodreads
I really can't tell you how many times Goodreads recommended this book to me- whenever I went to the recommendation page, this book was always first, ever since I was a GR newbie. This year, I finally bowed under the computer-peer-pressure and bought the first book of this series.

I must say, I don't know why I waited so long. Until recently, I'd never read a straight up romance novel, and this is a wonderful blend of my favorite: epic fantasy, and romance. The romance isn't too overbearing, even though it's essential to the plot.

The Plot:
Twenty-four year old Elysetta Baristani is used to her life as a woodcarver's daughter, being overlooked and left in relative peace. But her life changes when Rainier Tairen Soul, King of the Fading Lands, swoops out of the sky to claim her as his truemate. The only problem is, Elysetta is already engaged to another man, Den Brodson. Will Rain be able to claim her, or will he be spurred into another Wildling Rage and scorch the world again?

I'm a bit torn about the romance in this book. Sometimes it's sweet and lovely, but other times, Rain is a complete barbarian. I realize since he is a Tairen Soul, he's supposed to have a certain amount of dominance and other animal-like traits, but really? And then Ellie would object to his commands, once, and he'd force her to agree using Jedi mind tricks mind persuasion. And this is supposed to make Ellie look strong and stubborn? I can't see her (in this book) being much more assertive than any other person in the book.

But the author knows how to write fantasy- and she knows how to do it well. The world has politics, which, for a romance novel is very rare. It's also best to read this series continually until you're finished, due to the amount of Fey words the author writes in. I really like it when authors do that, but in the subsequent books in the series, there was a certain amount of this going on:

I think he swore at me in Fey tongue... From Newschoolers
For the first book, things are very black and white morally, but eventually we get hit with a load of gray. Of course, the real villains in this book are utterly abominable and never have a saving grace. I kind of like villains to be a little more human than that. In case you're wondering, these villains use babies to perform their voodoo magic. I bet you can guess how.

In the end, Lord of the Fading Lands is a lovely epic fantasy with a strong romance. My nitpick with the entire series (5 books) is that it could easily be condensed into 3 books- the ending of this book left a lot to be desired. If you're looking for an epic fantasy that doesn't lack in romance, consider the Tairen Soul series for your next read(s).

Rating: Upped to 4 of 5 Stars for an excellent and regal romance!

Content: Sexual situations and violence. Better read when Ages 18+.

Page Count: 402 pages

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