Author: Archer Kay Leah
Series: The Republic 2
Genre: High Fantasy
Pairing: M/M, M/F, Poly
Rating: Four Petals
On the Author's Website:
On the outside, Mayr seems to have it all: a successful career as Head of the Guard for a prominent politician, family and friends who adore him, and the attention of beautiful women. But appearances are a good way to bury secrets, including the fact that while Mayr is a romantic at heart, searching for the one person to share his life with, his lovers keep leaving him.
When his last girlfriend takes him back and suggests an intimate night with Tash, one of her lovers, Mayr reluctantly agrees. The last thing he expects is to fall hard for Tash, who is nothing like Mayr's previous lovers—and about to undertake the Uldana Trials. If Tash fails, he'll likely die. If he succeeds, he must give up Mayr, and become the latest to leave Mayr standing alone with a broken heart.
I received this book as an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
For the first half of this book I kept waiting for the larger, overarching plot to start. Mayr is Head of the Guard. His job is to protect his charges, so I was waiting for an attack against him. He also has a number of terrible, jealous women as ex-girlfriends, and I couldn't help wondering if one of them was going to start something. Or, we learn that Tash has a terrible gang out for his blood. I kept waiting for the gang to make a move. When I reached the halfway point I realized that wasn't what the book was about. Like the summary says, Mayr is a man unable to keep a steady relationship until he finds Tash, who, like the rest of Mayr's partners, is planning to leave him. That drama within the budding romance was the plot, and it was very well written.
My big disappointment with this book was the world building. There is a lot of detail about the four goddesses, which helped give Tash's quest to become a priest depth, but that was it. The name of the country Mayr lives in, the name of the town he is sworn to protect, how the governing system works--which was important to know since Mayr relies on that Council a few times--was never given any detail. Admittedly, this story had a laser focus on Mayr and Tash's relationship. Anything outside of that wasn't really necessary for the plot to flourish, but a touch more explanation would have helped a lot.
I enjoyed reading this book. It was very well-written and hard to put down, and the romance was perfect. I do wish there was a secondary plot for more of the book and that the world-building had a broader focus, but that didn't detract from what I liked about this story. I do recommend it.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.