Of Blood and Deceit by Rachel A. Collett
Magic runs in the Drakara bloodline. To seventeen-year-old Ilianna it’s a curse. Born a bastard and raised by an abusive uncle, she struggles to conceal her late-bloomed gifts, but it’s hard to hide when your uncle is king. The kingdom of Eira recovers from over a decade of warring an overseas enemy. Ilianna trains from youth to fight in her uncle’s militia, to keep her people from the grip of the Wraith Queen, even if she’s feared by everyone except the one that controls her. When it seems that peace is assured, her uncle offers her up to be married to their neighboring realm. However, Ilianna has no intention of accepting and flees the king’s rule only to wind up captured by the very enemy she was promised to. Prince Castiel, a powerful leader and cunning strategist, recognizes a disguised Ilianna the moment he sees her. When his strange prison guest does nothing but patiently wait for three long months, he forces her to make her move. Ilianna must tame her fears and control a rogue power before her uncle kills her for disobedience or worse, reclaims her and her magic.
Worldbuilding: Piqued curiosity
Plot: Mostly clear
Characters: Some more thought out than others
Immersion: Satisfying, fulfilling experience
Emotional Response: Engaging
Thought Provoking: New ideas came up
Cover: Matches the story well
Castiel and Ilianna start making heart eyes at each other from minute one and I freaking adored their interactions. Ilianna is such an easy character to root for and I liked her instantly. Riaan (the king) and Castiel have great bro banter as well.
Submitted by rebeccacrunden on 2021-06-15T23:50:16Z