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Visit my Website for all the blurbs, excerpts and news!!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Adonis Devereux - Love Comes Twice - A review

First of all, the bad news. I must confess that this is not my favourite of Adonis Devereux's books I read so far. It's not for any specific fault of the book; I just feel that the scope and intensity of the story needed more length to come into full bloom. The majesty of the plot deserved a more measured pace; the intricacy of the sex scene a more nuanced description; the dazzling richness of the world building could fill volumes on its own; and the conflicts and development of the characters (both considerable) could have been explored even more fully. My calculation is that the book is too short by at least a half.

But, for all that, I could not be convinced to cut off a star from my rating. Just perhaps a little tip from a corner of the fifth star.

The book still stands head, shoulders, nipples and navel above the crowd. It's almost sacrilegious to list this under Romance. Romance happens (very much; hot, passionate, no nonsense, heartrending romance) but this is first and foremost a wonderful fantasy story, set in a world of flabbergasting complexity.

Gilalion is so vast, so rich and so unique that really there is no point in trying to describe it. There is a handful of novels set in this universe already, and more to come, I am sure, so it's not a place that can be summed up in a paragraph or so. There are human kingdoms and Ausir kingdoms (Ausir look like humans, except they are longer lived, and have horns, and are all in all hotter and smarter). There are wrathful, quarrelsome gods, trolls and giants. But not boring and bald like it sounds here. Grand, and majestic and surprising. Look, you got to go and read the books, instead of sitting there reading my review.

The hero of the story here is Kiltarin, the Prince of the Larenai Ausirs, son of the God-king Kelvirith who appeared briefly in Bride for the God-king. Being the prince of a kingdom with an immortal king has its drawbacks: knowing he is not likely to ever inherit the throne, Kiltarin leaves his place at court to hunt Nohrs (let's say trolls, but scarier) in the wilderness.

In the wilderness he makes friends, here and there, like the Tamari Ausirs, an estranged Ausir population far in a barren icy country. Discovering the capital of this country, Icedeep, and its local customs and traditions is already enough to justify the price of the book.

The heroine is an amazing, complex, mysterious, loving, lusty, dangerous, deeply dark woman named Riane. When the Tamari king, on his death-quest, finds her asleep under the ice of a frozen lake, and wakes her up, she has no memory of her identity, except that in her sleep `she heard the whispers of the world'. And if that is not awesome, I don't know what is.

Much of what happens in the book has to do with the mystery of who and what Riane is, and it is quite a ride to discover the truth.

There are moments towards the end of the book when I thought, `Is this the same book I started the other day?', such is the deep change that comes upon all the characters involved. It might easily have been a trilogy!

Highly recommended.


  1. I am going to have to put this on my must read list. Looks really interesting with a complex heroine

    1. Complex heroine, yes, most definitely. Talking with the author I was told she never quite "fell in place", a statement that kept me thinking ever since. I think now that Riane as a person, not a character, cannot be grasped easily. That her level, or kind, of experience of life is so very unique as to be extremely difficult to capture. And yet, the book does capture her somehow, or her mystery in a very haunting way. I really recommend this book.

  2. Thank you for your honesty in your review of the book. We can't like every book we read but we still like the author and don't want to give up just because one book isn't as good as their others.

  3. Definitely love this author/s.
    As for the honesty, if I don't like a book, these days, I just don't review it. Kinder to everybody, because if I go snarky, it's real no-nonsense snark. But if I praise, I mean it.
    For the "can't like every book" part, I am strangey confused. I like "Bride for the God-King" best, so far, of AD's books, but "Love Comes Twice" has a strange magical quality to it. It is not a fully balanced book. It is as if the grandness of the world and the depth of the characters swept the authors away. Where the book lacks something in "craftiness" it gains twice as much in raw, undiluted awesomeness. Give it a try.

  4. I guess I'm confused because I got the "can't like every book" impression from your first and last paragraph. Will have to re-read the review and I will give the book a try.

  5. Allie, would you like a free copy of this book? :)


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