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Captive Prince (The Captive Prince Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition
“You will be completely enthralled and on edge.”—USA Today
“Have you read Captive Prince? If you haven’t, what are you waiting for?”—HeroesandHeartbreakers.com
“The cumulative effect of reading them back to back is mind blowing.”—Dear Author
“Pacat’s powerful debut, a blend of intense erotica and political fantasy, is disturbing and intriguing in equal measure...The intricacy of the political entanglements gives depth to the novel’s erotic turmoil...Fans of Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel series will eat this up with a spoon.”—Publishers Weekly
“Fans of Pacat’s internet-serial sensation will need no convincing of the merits of this series, but new readers should take note—this book lives up to every word of praise it has garnered. The lush setting, full of intricate historical detail, engaging decadence and ruthless scheming, will draw many, but it’s Pacat’s characters...who’ll surely keep readers captive. Their tenuous, fractious relationship is the heart and soul of this trilogy, and thankfully, readers will not have long to wait between installments in order to watch it unfold.”—RT Book Reviews --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
About the Author
C. S. Pacat is the author of the Captive Prince trilogy. Born in Australia and educated at the University of Melbourne, she has since lived in a number of different cities, including Tokyo and Perugia. She currently resides and works in Melbourne.--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B00I3REIHI
- Publisher : Berkley (Jan. 28 2014)
- Language : English
- File size : 2167 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 241 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 0987507397
- Best Sellers Rank: #37,553 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from Canada
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“He was not inclined to believe that cruelty delivered with one hand was redeemed by a caress from the other.”
When Prince Damianos AKA Damen, the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos, is betrayed by his brother, everyone believes he is dead. He is sent to Vere as a slave and straight into the hands of Laurent, the heir to the throne of Vere. Not good. At all. Laurent, it seems, is an evil man. The villain of this story? Maybe.
“A golden prince was easy to love if you did not have to watch him picking the wings off flies.”
Laurent, you beautiful, diabolical, brilliant bastard....
At 30% I HATED you. With a ******** passion.
At 50% I loved to hate you.
At 80% I hated that I was starting to love you...a little.
By the end...I own that ****...I love you. Villain or not. You're an enigma and I can't wait for all of the revelations that I know are coming.
The character development is absolutely BRILLIANT. When an author can change my mind about a man like Laurent, then they have weaved some kind of magic. And this is only the first book! I'm convinced that by the end of this series C.S. Pacat will have me believing that Laurent is a ******* saint, despite all the terrible things he has done. Okay, maybe not a saint but hopefully you know what I mean. Like I said...magic.
Damen is an honorable man. That's the best way I can describe him. The things that he sees in Vere, the violence and debauchery are almost too much for him to bear. But he's a fighter. He is strong and not easily broken. And it becomes clear by the end of this book that as much as Damen wants to hate Laurent...things aren't as black and white as they may seem.
“And what did it mean, to be a prince, if he did not strive to protect those weaker than himself?”
When I read the last page, I nicknamed this book “the little trigger-happy masterpiece”. The world and the people are brutal, depraved and violent. I won't deny that there are scenes that are difficult to read, BUT everything felt integral to the plot and world-building. To understand these characters and how hard they will have to fight, I think it was necessary to know what they were up against.
“Learning the words of an enemy was as important as learning the words of a friend.”
For anyone going into this for the romance, just know that you won't get that in this first book. Throughout most of the story Laurent and Damen hate each other. By the end, you can feel that it's building towards something, but this is going to be a long journey for these characters to get to a place where they can trust each other enough for any kind of love to grow.
Honestly, this is one of the BEST books I've read in a long time. I'm a huge fan of m/m, but I don't read a lot of fantasy novels. I am SO happy I stepped outside of my comfort zone and read it. I have to go dive into book two now!
Damen, crown Prince of Akelios is betrayed by his half brother in a coup for the crown. What he does not expect though is for Pastor to send him as a pleasure slave to their neighbour and off enemy nation Vere. No less he is sent as a personal gift to the poisonous crown Prince Laurent. Forced to keep his identity secret if he is to have any chance of surviving to escape, Damen is thrust into a court of such poisonous treachery that he does not know how he will come out alive, let alone unchanged.
This book is a beautiful game of chess, where four players are pitted against one another. The moves are complicated and betrayal is commonplace. Lead through the eyes of Damen, who is blunt and honest, not one for court intrigue,it takes time to see all of the pieces and the way that this can play out. There is so much at stake and Damen is so often forced to make decisions that are against his normal ways as he seeks to survive as well as protect his country while he has almost no power himself. There is so much coming up in this trilogy and I cannot wait to see where this story will write itself to next!
Top reviews from other countries
The way it tries to dress up constant abuse and racism inflicted on the main character as a stepping stone for the eventual romance by the end of the novel, is nothing short of disgusting. There are scenes where Damen (the POC protagonist) is repeatedly whipped, or put in chains or is graphically raped by other characters, all at the behest of Laurent, his love interest. I couldn't believe that this treatment would eventually result in a romance between the two characters, but low and behold, it some how does and it's just as bad as you can imagine. I was hoping that because the author herself is LGBT, it might treat the characters with some more depth and respect, usually not seen in other gay fiction written by straight people, but it's equally bad. The way she writes gay men is... it leaves me at a loss for words. All I can say is that if the pairing seen here was straight, and Laurent was abusing a captive 'princess', the uproar from critics would be astounding. But because it's two gay men, the treatment of Damen some how is okay? And people can actually praise it? I'm genuinely shocked.
The writing is incredibly hard to navigate also, it has been adapted from what I think is a livejournal and there's been little effort to try to help the formatting of the writing flow in a book format. Writing online fiction is very different to book fiction, online fiction can have a lot of heavy information dumps and exposition because usually, they start by just establishing everything and then get right into the character actions and actual plot. That, doesn't work too well with a book, it usually kills the pacing. This is something that can be seen in many other WattPad publications or even 50 Shades of Grey. It's a common problem and it's very apparent in this series also. At the start of each book is a handy character list and description, which you will have to CONSTANTLY backtrack to and attempt to navigate as it's so confusing between each scene which characters are talking and who they are and why what they're saying is important. There are just chunks of description and exposition dumped into the pages, and the 'sex' (or more aptly described as rape) scenes are poorly written and just embarrassing. The dialogue as well is pretty bad. If I had ONE nice thing to say about this novel is that the political intrigue is serviceable by the second and third book. However, I am not of the belief that you should be forced to endure something terrible in order to just wait for it to get better. Please, if you have any respect for yourself, do not bother buying this book or any others written by this author.
If you want a good portrayal of LGBT characters with this sort of epic fantasy setting with political intrigue, I would suggest perhaps Madeline Miller's A Song Of Achilles. It's better written, the gay characters are treated with respect and dignity and the action and dialogue is genuinely compelling.
One, Damen, tall and strong, prone to outbursts of emotion, is betrayed by his half brother and forced into slavery. His is given as a peace gift to an enemy nation. A place where to reveal his true identity would mean certain death.
The other, Laurent, cold, arrogant, cruel and beautiful, receives the unwanted gift of an untrained pleasure slave from the nation he loaths, the nation that killed his father and brother, The nation he wants to destroy.
There was a lot I liked about this book, the charecters are complex and well drawn, it is well written. There is a light touch with the world building, details of the two nations are somewhat sketchy - we get a glimpse of the political intriuge in both, and loads on info on their slightly different attitudes to sex and slavery, but little else. The first half of the book is mostly sex and violence, about 20% sex 80% violence, some of it quite graphic and shocking, most of it very well written. The second half of the book is more plot driven, I have to admit that I did not totally understand what was going on for some of it. There were a few 'and suddenly he understood' moments where I was not even sure how or what had just happened. But that's fine - I can cope with that.
My main issue with this book was that it did not feel like a complete story. It is a firly short books and the main charecters had barely begun to make an impact on each other. None of the story arcs seemed in anyway resolved, this seems like a beginning only. I am aware that this is the first section of a trilogy and I am sure the story will be teased out in future books, but this felt like an arbitory and unsatifying ending rather than a natural break in the story. In my opinion evey book in a series should be able to stand up by itself, especially the first. I did wonder whether the trilogy format was just an effort to spin out the story into more books, and thus charge us more for the privilage (and each of these books is a bit more expensive that you would usually expect for kindle).
I am fully aware that this is just my opinion. This book came to me well hyped by many people whose opinon on these matters I admire. I am sure many people will disagree with me - please feel free to comment below - I love a good discussion.
In Depth: This series is something I'd never heard off but suddenly several glowing reviews and five star ratings appeared on my dash and I knew I had to check it out. I'm really really glad I did, so thank you to all those people who wrote those reviews and rated it five stars.
The Story: I loved everything about this story, it was so beautifully told and full of tension and twists and so much fun. The story itself follows Damen who has been forced into slavery by his half-brother, and compelled to serve the crown prince of his enemies (who particularly hate him as he killed their previouscrown prince (and his new masters older brother) in battle previously). This results in some pretty epic moments of tension as Damen cannot reveal who he is.
The Characters: I felt this book demonstrates character development at it's finest. Laurent who is introduced as a villainous character who becomes someone whom sympathy is felt for. Damen who shows sacrifice on behalf of his fellow countrymen and loyalty towards Laurent (despite his hatred of him). And so many more examples. I loved this book and it's treatment of it's characters.
The Relationship: This is fundamentally a story about warring nations and attempts to gain power. A political fantasy with some hints of romance, there is something wonderful about reading this. I loved the development from hatred into trust and possibly something more between Laurent and Damen, I liked the fact it was not about instantly falling into love or even lust. There is something rewarding about watching two people start to trust one another rather than having it as a guarantee.
My Thoughts: I am glad I read this book, honestly it's a fantastically written fantasy which hints of romance and some wonderfully intriguing plot lines. Personally I cannot wait to get to the second volume and I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a different fantasy romance that is a relatively (compared to some) easy read.
This is readable. The plot is easy to follow (and quite intriguing) and the writing style flows, but ... The only way I can explain this is that it feels like someone's Nano project -maybe one draft later. It's all a bit unedited in places and whilst the description was lush in some parts and there was a reasonably good atmosphere, it all felt basic and predictable, too.
The good points about the book were, as I previously said, the plot and also the pacing. There's intrigue and machinations going on in Vere, which is foreshadowed by the usurping of Damen's throne by his evil half brother. This did, though, beg the question why he didn't just kill Damen, as he's already told everyone he's dead? If you get off on seeing your brother and rightful heir humiliated, which is why you turn him into a slave, wouldn't you wish to be around to see it? I'm wondering if I missed something - did Jokaste ask for him to be spared? Is Kastor really a nice guy and has done this as a means of saving his bro? (No, I'm pretty sure he hasn't.)
There were one or two surprises along the way, and I found myself liking one or two characters who sadly weren't in the book very much, but I am hoping they'll appear in the next ones.
There was too much description about looks. I swear if I was reminded that Laurent had blond/yellow/pale hair and blue eyes again, and they were the exact characteristics that Damen was drawn to, any more, I would have thrown the book across the room. As I'm reading on a kindle, that would have been expensive.
He's good looking. He's fair skinned. He has blue eyes. You like that. WE GET IT!
I also found myself not bothered about the protag much. I mean, he's not evil. He fights for what's right and good and he's obviously buff and hot so I should be swooning (He's also well-endowed and up for it with both men and women) but he was 'too good'. He was Gary Stu leaving Laurent to be some vengeful Mary-Sue with a Tragic Background.
This all sounds horribly negative, and I know that many many people have enjoyed the book and series. It was recommended to me by at least four people, and I can see why it's captured their imaginations because the relationships in the book are hard to find in 99% of published literature, and by god it's great to not have more cis het romance screaming through the pages, but at the same time, I'm not scurrying to read the others. I probably will at some stage (holiday reading perhaps) but for now I'm going to find something else.
I've recently read the first three Raven Cycle books - now they gripped me, but this doesn't.