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The Knight and the Necromancer
Book One: The Capital
By A. H. Lee
Read: May 2020
The Knight and the Necromancer was a fascinating tale of a developing relationship that seems doomed from the beginning. Sworn enemies for generations found each other anonymously by chance at the local gay pub. Can romance prosper between external forces like the death of a king, an attack on the successor to the crown, a traitor on the inside, and a war from a possessed magical being at the border?
This is an action-packed, quick-paced start of a series that keep the pages turning. Thank you, A.H. Lee.
The Story Line
Prince Roland is back from the front lines of a war to bury his father. In addition, he is still recovering from the death of his unrequited love in a battle month prior. Roland finds himself at the local, semi-secret gay watering hole, the Tipsy Knave. Not looking for love, not even really looking for a hook-up, just wanting to escape to someplace familiar for a while.
At the bar, is a quiet scholarly type of man, much younger than Roland that piques his interest. Inviting himself to join this mystery person and deploying some lighthearted flirting. Sairis was visiting the capital city for a meeting and was clearly inexperienced in flirting, the ways of man on man attraction, and even inexperienced in social situations. Despite all of this, there was clearly the start of a well-established attraction and despite needed to leave for the evening, established a date in the same spot for the next night.
The Real Meeting
The next morning, it appears everything will change, they both end up in the same meeting at the palace. Roland, a knight, brother of the soon to be crowned Queen, comes face to face with Sairis the apprentice of the necromancer who is the sworn enemy of the kingdom. Sairis was invited and given safe passage by the soon to be Queen Daphne. Roland also had an encounter during his childhood with a necromancer that played on him during the day-long meeting. Internal conflict compounds in both Roland’s head as well as Sairis’.
There is no stopping this relationship now…
A magical attack on Roland and Daphne during the meeting was thwarted by Sairis. In the same conflict, Roland tries to save Sairis. Sairis, given his type of magic, is blamed by all except Daphne and Roland. Clearly, there was a traitor in the palace. Believing Sairis was dead, Roland ends up back at the Tipsy Knave to mourn, only to find the necromancer there, injured.
The adventure continues with them feeling their way through a relationship with decades of animosity as well as dealing with the murder attempt, a traitor among them, keeping the throne & kingdom intact, and the coming war.
What Did I love
It was a fast-moving book. I read the entire series during a long holiday weekend with the family. It was not because I was ignoring my family, it was because at night when I was reading I had trouble setting it down. Each page had something happening.
Lee did a great job building the scenes, but not in an “explain every finite detail” sort of way. Her description of the Tipsy Knave made me feel like I was there. Granted, I have been to a FEW gay bars over the years, and could easily picture the types of patrons she was describing. The description of the world was just right. It is not so much detail that it is boring, and not so vague that you are confused when reading the book.
I found the internal dialog throughout the book to be great. Lee clearly painted the picture of the soul searching surrounding the relationship between Roland and Sairis despite all the external forces surrounding them. This developed them as true characters, not just a superficial persona that you sometimes find in romance novels. I will call out that there are a couple of smaller sex scenes in the book. They were erotic; just think a “skin flick” verses an XXX movie, not super detailed. I enjoyed it because it was not a lot of sex just for the sake of it. In fact, the first scene is not even until the second half of the book.
What did I not care for
There is very little critical critique of this book. However, it did end on a big cliff hanger that seemed a little out of place. I get that this series is broken up by the location. This storyline is set in The Capital; hence the name. The next book moves out of the capital.
Truthfully, that did accomplish one thing. I ran to my computer and quickly bought the second book!
Why I recommend the book
You want a true romance that seems doomed from the start, this is your book! I do not really have a rating scale, but I would give it a strong 4.5 out of 5 stars. The cliffhanger would be the only reason for the slight downgrade. The Knight and the Necromancer is a quick couple hour read. The story is put together well and moved at a quick pace.
About the author: A.H. Lee
A.H. Lee is a pen name. Her real name is Abigail Hilton. This is not a secret! She is very open about it on her website. Abigail is an advanced practice nurse who has been writing fantasy books since she was just a teenager. She uses the A.H. Lee pen name to publish her more “steamy” novels. Again, not a secret, but apparently prefers that her sexy books don’t pop up next to her children’s books. I get that!
She jokes on her website that all her story contains a cat. I can vouch, there is a demon cat in this novel. She has two series under the A.H. Lee moniker. The Knight and Necromancer which has 3 books & a short story prequel, which fall into the gay genre and The Incubus Series with is 5 books in the straight romance genre.
Check out her website: AbigailHilton.com
Her Facebook Page: A.H. Lee Facebook
Her Discussion Group for all things A.H. Lee: A.H. Lee Chat group
I did mention that I read the entire series in a weekend. More reviews are coming, so stay tuned. This is a great book series.
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- I DID NOT receive a copy of this book from the author or publisher. I purchased it outright.
- All these opinions are mine and I received NO compensation for this review.
- This post contains affiliate links. They are no cost to you but help to keep my little site afloat. Check out my disclosure.
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