The story was ridiculous. There were some good ideas, issues of magic and corruption, but none of them were handled well. They were all just used as thinly veiled excuses for more sex. And don't get me wrong, I love smut in my book. But here it's just over used and outrageous. The characters are laughable. Their actions so removed from what we are told their motivations are that they're either the two stupidest men in the world or so unaware of themselves that that it's honestly unbelievable. The book probably would have done much better if it hadn't been written in alternating first person perspective. The characters are too shallow and ill conceived to stand up to the point of view. The poor development wouldn't have been so painful in third person, maybe. The fact that this is meant to be a society where homosexuality is entirely banned and almost unthinkable and yet every single male character in the book (and there are no female characters) has sex with one of the protagonists. EVERY ONE. The author has no other ideas for how to handle any situations that don't involve sex, coerced sex, magically necessary sex or out and out rape. I'm not joking, almost every chapter is about one of the main characters having sex and usually not by their free choice. The whole plot reads like a game where the author tries to figure out new ways to get these two faithful lovers to sleep with everyone else in the world. I can't imagine how anyone takes this book seriously.
This might be a perfectly lovely story, but it's written in the second person. I have no idea why anyone would do that. It's all "You do this" and "you do that" and It was almost impossible for me to get past that. I have enjoyed Sue Brown's work in the past, but here I couldn't get into it at all.
I love the tension in this story. Every part of the developing relationship is beautiful and challenging and really well handled. The external conflicts and dangers they face keep the story moving and dramatic. But my favorite thing is that this story doesn't present anything as simple. Love doesn't magically make everything perfect. These characters have to work and fight for their happy ending and that made it really satisfying when it all does finally work out. I loved this book.
The relationship between the main characters is great. It's well developed and romantic and I really enjoyed both of them and the way they come together. But there were some problems that really lessened my enjoyment of this one. The female characters were SO BAD. The neurotic ex-girlfriend and the predatory trophy wife... it was just too much for me. And the conflict between the main characters felt really forced. Now, that was a lot of negatives, but I still gave it three stars. Because what this book does well, it does very well. And the development of the romantic relationship really is what I'm here for. So, in short, this one isn't a favorite but it's not bad and I would definitely read more from this author.
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