You might have read my post back in July about A.J. Lancaster’s Stariel series. (You didn’t read it?! Then click here). I still love this series, and when I found out at the end of the last book that one of my favorite characters was getting his own book, I couldn’t wait to read it. I meant that literally, by the way. As soon as I was offered an ARC I jumped at the chance to read it, even though I had already placed a pre-order for the book. And I regret nothing! In fact, I will most likely read the whole series again once Rake of His Own comes out on October 28th.
I have to admit, I’ve always had a soft spot for Marius. His quirkiness, insecurities, and inner dialogue (especially his inner dialogue!) have really endeared him to me. In the previous book, The King of Faerie, he discovered a number of things about himself that really shook his world. In this book, he is still trying his best to come to terms with those revelations, in particular his ability to read others’ thoughts and the ethics that go with that. He is not having an easy time of it, though. Add to that, one tempting and tempestuous fairy prince and one unexpected mystery, and it is no surprise that the poor man is teetering on the edge.
I enjoyed the interplay between Marius and Rakken quite a bit. Seeing them trying to work themselves out was both sweet and frustrating at the same time (in a good way). The mystery was not what I had expected it to be. Marius and Rakken end up traipsing though both the mortal world and the faerie realms in their search for clues, which was no hardship for me. The worldbuilding in this series is one of my favorite things about it. However, I could see how some readers might have a hard time keeping up with all the different places they end up going to in this book.
The conclusion was satisfying (and unexpected in the case of the whodunit), and I was happy to see a number of familiar characters make an appearance throughout. From some of the goings on, I also suspect that this will not be the last story told in this wonderfully imaginative world, which makes me very happy indeed!