Genre: Gay Fantasy, Dragon Shifter
Publisher: ARe Books
Date of Publication: August 1, 2015
Word Count: 41,000
Cover Artist: Erin Dameron Hill
What will it take for a dragon prince to defy his father and fly on his own?
Prince Jules, the least favorite of the Dragon King's children, lives simply, banished to his rooms and the amazing adventures found in his books. He has never left the palace or shifted into his dragon form…he's never done anything.
Dragon shifter Lem is assigned to Jules as the prince's new bodyguard, and is determined to keep Jules safe from the Graithen, who killed the prince’s previous guardian. Lem grows to hate how the King hides Jules away, and longs to show him how to fly. His love for Jules also grows but it is forbidden, like so much in Jules' life.
When the Graithen attack again, though, everything changes.
Considred the runt of the litter, Prince Jules is the least favourite and banished to his rooms and never allowed to leave them. His only friend and companion is his bodyguard, Mabon, and the only life Jules lives is through his books. He's a prisoner in the royal castle and everything that a normal shifter can do is forbidden for him. He isn't allowed to change form, he isn't allowed to fly and he isn't allowed to venture beyond his rooms or the small courtyard enclosing them.
When Mabon is killed in an attack by the Graithen, Jules despairs. He doesn't eat, he barely sleeps and he hardly ever ventures outside, into the warmth of the sun which his dragon needs.
Lem is assigned as his new bodyguard and gradually Lem takes Jules out of his shell, getting him to eat, to go outside and to get some much needed rest. The more Jules recovers, the more enamoured Lem becomes of him. But Jules is a royal, Lem is a commoner bodyguard. Love between them would not be allowed, much like everything else in Jules' life. There are no bars on Jules' gilded cage, but it is a cage nontheless and Lem yearns to break the prince free of it.
Soon it becomes clear that Jules is not the runt of the litter at all, but something much bigger and unique.
I have read a few Sean Michael books before and while those were more on the erotic/raunchy side, this one feels more romantic to me. Not that to say there isn't sex in it, it's a Sean Michael book, of course there's sex ;) but this one delves deeper into the emotions of the characters. Most of the book only features Lem and Jules, with scant appearances by a few side characters. It meant that the reader was feeling as isolated as those two were within the confines of the castle rooms and then later on in the mountain caves. This was most definitely a story of Lem and Jules, rather than a story of the world they inhabit.
I would have liked a bit more world-buliding and a bit more build-up to discovering what the strange markings on Jules' hands were. The explanation happened rather suddenly and it fell a bit flat. Some of the love scenes were so sweet they could make your teeth ache, with lots of endearments and promises of forever which I don't normally care for. But here I liked it, as it fitted these two characters and what they would say. Jules is very naive and inexperienced but Jules knew what he wanted and pursues Lem as much as Lem pursues him.
All in all, an enjoyable, romantic read.
Available at ARe
About the Author:
Sean Michael, often referred to as "Space Cowboy" and "Gangsta of Love" while still striving for the moniker of "Maurice," spends his days surfing, smutting, organizing his immense gourd collection and fantasizing about one day retiring on a small secluded island peopled entirely by horseshoe crabs. While collecting vast amounts of vintage gay pulp novels and mood rings, Sean whiles away the hours between dropping the f-bomb and pursuing the Kama Sutra by channeling the long lost spirit of John Wayne and singing along with the soundtrack to "Chicago."
A long-time writer of complicated haiku, currently Sean is attempting to learn the advanced arts of plate spinning and soap carving sex toys.
Barring any of that? He'll stick with writing his stories, thanks, and rubbing pretty bodies together to see if they spark.
For more information on other books by Sean, visit his official website: www.SeanMichaelWrites.com
2 eBooks from any ARe Books imprint/series.
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