Raine may be the chosen, destined to spend his life bonded to the Emperor Taldan, but he’s not sure the man truly accepts him, nor does he really know what role he will be able to play in the court. Meanwhile, Raine’s brothers back in Odenar have gone ahead with their plans to invade neighboring Bhantan and are killing and looting their way to the peaceful country’s valuable mines. Taldan’s brother Zaran is in hot pursuit of the invaders, and ambassador Isnay is trying to smooth things out with Bhantan’s new king.
This sequel to Dark Rain picks up where the first book left off. As in the previous volume, the story is told from many different points of view. With the story developing on three different fronts, this is even more of a requirement than it was in the previous story. Only a few new characters are added to the already extensive cast, so we get to know each of them a little more.
Surprisingly, although Raine may seem to be the main character, and to me the most interesting, it feels like we get quite a bit less of him than of the other men of the court. In an interesting twist, this includes one or two people that you may have thought we’d seen the last of, such as Hredeen. And, it’s not just Raine’s relationship that is complicated. Naral and Isnay both find themselves getting involved with men that they probably shouldn’t.
Hredeen is probably the character we learn the most about in this installment. Through him, we get to know more about the War Guild and the role it seems to be playing in the over-arcing plot of the series. That plot becomes a little clearer in this book, with each of the many main characters each picking up a piece of the puzzle. Exactly how it’s all going to turn out is anybody’s guess. The only thing clear by the end of this story is that things will probably get more complicated.
“Night of Rain” is available from Amazon.