The land of Terre d'Ange is a place of unsurpassing beauty and grace. It is said that angels found the land and saw it was good... and the ensuing race that rose from the seed of angels and men live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.
Phèdre nó Delaunay is a young woman who was born with a scarlet mote in her left eye. Sold into indentured servitude as a child, her bond is purchased by Anafiel Delaunay, a nobleman with very a special mission... and the first one to recognize who and what she is: one pricked by Kushiel's Dart, chosen to forever experience pain and pleasure as one.
Phèdre is trained equally in the courtly arts and the talents of the bedchamber, but, above all, the ability to observe, remember, and analyze. Almost as talented a spy as she is courtesan, Phèdre stumbles upon a plot that threatens the very foundations of her homeland. Treachery sets her on her path; love and honor goad her further. And in the doing, it will take her to the edge of despair... and beyond. Hateful friend, loving enemy, beloved assassin; they can all wear the same glittering mask in this world, and Phèdre will get but one chance to save all that she holds dear.
Set in a world of cunning poets, deadly courtiers, heroic traitors, and a truly Machiavellian villainess, this is a novel of grandeur, luxuriance, sacrifice, betrayal, and deeply laid conspiracies. Not since Dune has there been an epic on the scale of Kushiel's Dart-a massive tale about the violent death of an old age, and the birth of a new. (Summary and cover courtesy of goodreads.com)
I really enjoyed this one! At the beginning it feels like the books is going to be more along the lines of a erotica novel with some intrigue and politics, but it quickly develops to a lot more. The book certainly develops more into a high fantasy storyline, but with some interesting twists. I love that Phedre is so much more than people think she is and she learns quite fast how to survive and depend on herself.
There were a few moments where the plot dragged on a bit, but I believe that’s true in most fantasy epics just to ensure there is enough depth to the storyline. I’d certainly give this one a reread and will be continuing the series in the future!
Warning: Contains repeated sexual content and violence.
Rating: 5 stars!
Who should read it? Folks who want a hybrid fantasy epic with a more explicit romantic overtone at the same time.
Want to read the whole series?
- Kushiel’s Chosen (Phedre’s Trilogy #2)
- Kushiel’s Avatar (Phedre’s Trilogy #3)