Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Eresse - Hallowed Bond

Time and circumstances may force true lovers apart but the tie that binds them can never be fully severed.
When Dylen Teris and Riodan Leyhar meet one harsh winter in the dual-gendered realm of Ylandre, neither expects the encounter to lead to a fast friendship and abiding love. For a chasm of vastly dissimilar social stations lies between them, and not all Deira could imagine, let alone accept, such a relationship.
Circumstances eventually separate them for what seems forever only to conspire to bring them together once more in the most unlikely of places—at the court of Rohyr Essendri, Ylandre’s powerful monarch. Complicating their situation is the attraction that still lingers between them, waiting to flare once more into love. But when one is unwilling to venture his heart again or wholly forgive its breaker, it may take a king’s interference to reunite these star-crossed lovers for good.

Comment: This is the second book in the Chronicles of Ylandre series. This time it features two different main characters although it's set in the same scenario as the previous one. I was curious enough with the previous book to keep reading despite the little things that I thin could have been better. I was hopeful about this one.

This book starts when Dylen and Riodan meet. Dylen works as a companion, a sort of exclusive prostitute but his services don't always mean sexual intercourse. Dylen lives with his father and a servant and has a very peaceful life. When he meets Riodan in a cold day, he offers him shelter and that is the start of a serious friendship, even if Riodan tells he's ready for more. Time goes by, their relationship changes and gets more intense. However, Riodan finished his studies and starts working. He goes away for 12 years and it's a hard separation to both although Dylen agreed because he wanted the best for Riodan.
One day they meet again when Dylen asks Riodan for help to his ailing father, but the result of that meeting isn't the one Dylen expected. From then on, things no longer were the same until now, when another change puts them together once more.

This story has several changes in time while the plot develops. In a way, it helps the readers to have their own ideas about what is happening because it allows them to see what happens and how Dylen and Riodan's relationship is shaped from the start. On one hand, I liked this for this reason exactly, it helped to understand many reactions and thoughts throughout the time it took for the story to develop. On the other side, it dragged the action through so many times and settings, in a way it lost a bit of power, I'd say. If it had been ore sudden, or just one change total, it would be easier to follow. But all things considered I can't say it was badly done, just that it was obvious enough to remember after finishing the book.

This story focus a certain subject quite heavily, something that revolves around the guys' relationship. Many people said it was something bad and unfair, but without getting into spoilers, I'd say to me, it didn't seem so harsh. I think I wasn't properly invested in their relationship at that point. It didn't bother me as much and I saw it more as a way to separate them which would mean they would have a reconciliation after. However, after thinking about it for a while, I agree it was something bad because despite their mutual agreement on the reasons for the separation and on the separation itself, it still gives the whole thing a bad notion when one thinks about the reactions of Riodan when they meet 12 years later. I said it didn't bother me that much and it didn't, I can't explain well why, but I admit it left a sour note for the rest of the book.

This subject aside, the story was again very well focused on the customs and dealings within this society where aren't no women, where the characters have a very social live and interactions and he world has many details the author inserted to built up more expectations and notions about how everything works and why. Quite the structured world, I think.

The final part of the book, after the main characters meet again is faster happening, it moves along easily and offers many insights to the way everything works and how society is a well of problems but beauty too. I liked it and also the way both Dylen and Riodan worked with their issues personally and professionally, which ended up in an interesting twist and the expected HEA. At this point, their positions in life are different, they both have new status socially and politically, so it's another layer to add to the consequences of their reconciliation.

I'll keep reading the series because fantasy aside, I like to see what happens from the emotional POV. This one was heavy on that aspect, but not as much for me personally that I didn't stomach the worse parts. To entertain it works.
Grade: 7/10

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