A Play For Power
Princess Oria has one chance to keep her word and stop her brother’s reign of terror: She must become queen. All she has to do is marry first. And marry Lonen, the barbarian king who defeated her city bare weeks ago, who can never join her in a marriage of minds, who can never even touch her—no matter how badly she wants him to.
A Fragile Bond
To rule is to suffer, but Lonen never thought his marriage would become a torment. Still, he’s a resourceful man. He can play the brute conqueror for Oria’s faceless officials and bide his time with his wife. And as he coaxes secrets from Oria, he may yet change their fate…
An Impossible Demand
With deception layering on deception, Lonen and Oria must claim the throne and brazen out the doubters. Failure means death— for them and their people.
But success might mean an alliance powerful beyond imagining…
Worldbuilding: The fantasy world of Bara is ever interesting, and most of the action of Oria’s Gambit takes place there. I can’t say there was too much nuance or political intrigue added to the already-well-built world. I’d love to find out more about the Trom, because I’m a fantastic-creatures geek ofc xD
Characters: I felt Oria grew as a character and as a person, becoming a very determined woman. Maybe a bit too determined at times for her own good, but every bit as fun to watch evolve. I loved Lonen all the more, and I think it’s with him that Jeffe Kennedy struck gold in this part of the series. I loved the layered, textured personality Lonen showed, his passion, his thoughtfulness, his willingness to play as a team though he is without a doubt every bit the alpha male you’d expect and ax-wielding barbarian to be 😀
There was FINALLY some development between them, and boooooy was it hot! I mean, I don’t to spoil it or anything, but I will say it’s one of the more creative smexy times I’ve read in a while for reasons I won’t disclose here so as not to ruin your anticipation of the event. (Though I’m so totally waiting for more. Perv factor times 1000, yep, no shame for me, mwahahaha!) I really love their chemistry and the banter is priceless, as I’ve come to expect from Jeffe Kennedy.
Plot: The romance is basically a new definition of slooooow burn, but the development is satisfying and exciting for sure. On the political intrigue front, things moved forward, then kind of hurdled into “oh noooo!” zone at the end there. Overall the story was fun though pretty slow-paced, and I’m looking forward to the next in the series to see how things go from here.
Writing: Third person, past tense narrative, his/her POV. While both Oria and Lonen are fun and have a great sense of humor, I think my fav is Lonen 😀
Curb Appeal: Cool cover, hooking blurb – but auto-buy author name for me anyway, lol.
All in all, I do recommend the Sorcerous Moons series so far to fans of super-slow-burn fantasy romance with a nice side of royal intrigue and power struggle, and some very interesting magic system and magic action 😀