Sunday, August 18, 2013

Review: Naga's Concubine (Chronicles of the Shifter Directive #4) by Scarlet Hyacinth

Naga's Concubine (Chronicles of the Shifter Directive, #4)Naga's Concubine (Chronicles of the Shifter Directive #4)
by Scarlet Hyacinth
Published August 17th 2013 by Siren Bookstrand
Formats Available: Adobe Acrobat, HTML, EPUB, Mobipocket
My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

[Siren Epic Romance, ManLove: Erotic Alternative Fantasy/Paranormal Romance, M/M, shape-shifters, HEA]

Ice dragon Sagenamadeen Zager has always been a loyal soldier, renowned for his cold demeanor. But his life changes when Sage meets and falls in love with Prince Camden Isaiat.

Camden is the only one who truly manages to melt the ice around his heart. But Camden is also a naga, a member of the second caste and a chimera. Their love is a taboo. And it isn’t only the draechen who are against it, but also Camden’s family.

When Sage agrees to join them in the naga capital, he becomes little more than a concubine. But just as Sage and Camden decide they’ve had enough, a vampire ploy targets the naga. Mysterious forces are at work, and Sage is the only one who can keep his mate safe from them. Can he prove the true power of his mate bond surpasses all labels, or will distrust, hatred, and darkness separate him from his lover?

The story of Camden and Sage have been going on in bits and pieces throughout this series. It was quite frustrating to read about these two men whose romance seemed starcrossed at best, but it was satisfying finally getting my hands on this installment that will finally settle the matter of their love affair.

Or so I thought.

The Naga's Concubine is the fourth installment of the Chronicles of the Shifter Directive, a series that is more epic fantasy than anything else, treating the readers with nail-biting, suspense-filled, fantasy romance equipped with dragons, caste levels of fairies, elves, vampires, shape-shifters and very sexy and romantic men. Obviously, this is a cast of characters that should read easy, but instead, we get these installments of books that gradually build up a plot that seems to get darker and more desperate as the arc unfolds. 

Naga's Concubine seems to be the darkest of these books. Reading it was like being placed atop a precipice where one step could mean victory and the other war. It does resolve the romance between Camden and Sage and it took a lot of sacrifice on their part to reach this point. And yet, readers know their discoveries will ultimately bring them to the last three books which should end in victory. At this point, however, it is quite desperate especially when things resolved reveals a deeper, darker, shadow that will surely catch the draechen and other shapeshifters unprepared and scrambling on how to counter. With this new development, it seems the issue on the Shifter Directive takes a backstep as they have bigger things to defend themselves from.

I do not like being on a precipice, my heart cannot take it. And yet this is exactly where I find myself. Knowing the events have unfolded into darker times, I am now more desperate to read what comes next. The events that have unfolded have so far been quite unpredictable and this worries me a bit. How this will all finaly conclude, how this will finally reveal the darkness that seems to be creeping surely into this society, I have no idea. All I do know for sure is that this series will all have HEA endings, and that is a boon, but so far, Scarlet Hycinth is taking her readers on a journey so fantastical she rivals fantasy writers of a general fiction category and at the same time, guarantees her readers an MM romance series that can send her readers' hearts a flitter-flutter in the best way possible. Complete with goofy smiles.

How this author can unfailingly bring about a stellar four sets of installments and a free book is simply amazing. It is now quite apparent to me that this whole arc was not an overnight impulse write. So far as I see it, this is one of the best fantasy series ever written for the MM genre and yes, again I must reiterate my recommendation of a fantastic read.

Note: Stop hesitating and just read the series from books 1 to 4! This is not the regular series where any which book is a standalone. This series is impossible to make logic of if one detail is missed. And yes, that includes the smexy scenes we all crave for, curiously enough!

Chronicles of the Shifter Directive Series by Scarlet Hyacinth (Guide + Books 1 & 2)
Warrior's Dream (Chronicles of the Shifter Directive #3)
Emperor's Consort (Chronicles of the Shifter Directive #5) 

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