Warning: If you haven’t already read the first two books of this series, this review of the third may contain spoilers about what happens in them.
Crown Prince Lonn is on a far away world quelling a rebellion when he senses a powerful magical presence nearby. In the unsavory depths of a market he finds a witch selling a slave. The wretched man in a cage is the source of the power Lonn senses, although he doesn’t understand it. The prince is determined to purchase the man, and agrees to a high price plus the seemingly innocuous promise of a favor to the witch. It isn’t long before Lonn finds out just what the man, Llias, means to him, and just how high a price he is going to pay to have him.
This third book of the Thrall Prince series shifts focus onto two different characters. Vell’s brother Lonn has already played a role in the previous books, but now takes center stage. Joining him is Llias, the man whose fate is intertwined with Lonn’s, even if he doesn’t want to believe it.
We already know from the previous books that Crown Prince Lonn is trapped between the demands of his parents and his love for his brother Vell. Their mother and father are convinced that Vell and his offspring are destined to bring about the end of their empire, but Lonn has a hard time bringing himself to harm his brother or his children. It’s not much of a spoiler to say that Lonn is forced to make some hard choices by the end of this book.
Llias is a new character, and even though we get parts of the story from his point of view, he still remains something of a blank slate. He’s an orphan with no friends or family, but he does have something of an important role on his home world. He is a very likable character, both for the reader and for the other characters in the book. A large part of that is his utter disregard for Lonn’s lofty position. Llias is perhaps the only person in Lonn’s life that treats him like an ordinary person, something that both endears him to Lonn while also infuriating him. As Crown Prince, Lonn has never had to convince anyone to do what he wants them to do, and that makes it hard for him to deal with Llias, who may just be the most important person in Lonn’s life now.
This book seems to be setting things up for a final showdown between the brothers and their parents, but the next book is not due out until May 2021, so we’re in for a wait to see how things go for Vell, David, Lonn and Llias.
“The Arcane Heart” is available from Amazon.