Monday, December 25, 2023

“The Ever Mage” by Angelina J. Steffort

This book picks up where the Last one left off. Sanja is alone in the Crow Palace, a prisoner in the dungeon after making a deal with the Crow King, Taking Clio's place as his promised bride has managed to save the lives of her mate, King Recienne (aka Rogue), as well as his sister, Clio, and her mate, Tori, though it has left her to suffer and eventually be killed. It is well known that few Crow Brides manage to survive for more than a year, and most last far less than that. This book starts out with your heart aching for all of them, and it grows from there.

I can’t tell you how often this book had my heart aching for the characters and multiple times had me nearly in tears. Yes, there are happy moments as well, but this book definitely takes you through the entire range of human (and fae) emotions, both the happy ones and the dark ones. Honestly, it was the perfect conclusion to an enthralling series. I absolutely loved it.

This book kept me on the edge of my seat much of the time. Sometimes in a hopeful way, and other times despairing that the characters that I have come to love will be able to find their happy ending, as much as I was praying that they would. (And I can't tell you if they do or not, as that will spoil the ending for you, and you really will want to experience it for yourself.) There are certainly a lot of twists and turns, as well as unexpected happenings along the way, even though looking back, there were hints of what was coming from the very beginning of the series.

And in case you are wondering, yes, I feel this book well deserves a 5-star review. If you haven’t read the previous books in this series, I strongly recommend going back & reading them first as you will have missed so much that if you don’t, this book might not make as much sense to you.. I do need to warn you that there are some sexual scenes in the book. (How can there not be when you are dealing with newly-mated fairies?) But while somewhat intense, are not so overly graphic as to warrant concern save for very young readers. (If you are old enough for some of the darker themes in this series, then you are likely old enough for the sex scenes, especially if you have read the previous books.) I also need to warn you that there are some scenes involving torture as well.

I received a review copy of this book and would recommend this one to anyone who enjoys reading fantasy novels that take you on an emotional rollercoaster, if you enjoy stories involving magic and romance, trust and betrayal, and if you have been reading the previous books in the series, then you really don’t want to miss this one. It’s that good. I honestly didn’t want to put it down to sleep at night. It was definitely the perfect ending to this series.

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