Radiance by Grace Draven
Published by Grace Draven
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Adult
For fans of: Master of Crows, Fantasy romances, actual nice heroes, witty non-bratty princesses who don’t make shitty, selfish decisions.
My rating: 4 stars out of 5


Brishen Khaskem, prince of the Kai, has lived content as the nonessential spare heir to a throne secured many times over. A trade and political alliance between the human kingdom of Gaur and the Kai kingdom of Bast-Haradis requires that he marry a Gauri woman to seal the treaty. Always a dutiful son, Brishen agrees to the marriage and discovers his bride is as ugly as he expected and more beautiful than he could have imagined.


Ildiko, niece of the Gauri king, has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn’t just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she’s known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light.

Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.

Move over Silhara, there’s a new hero in town

*shoves Silhara aside*
*replaces him with Brishen*

I definitely liked this one better than Master of Crows. Mostly for the fact that Brishen was a much more likable hero (Silhara could be an ass, let’s face it) and that the plot never got wtf-y like MoC did.

This isn’t amazing, unputdownable, high brow high fantasy, by any means. Draven’s writing is nothing to really write home about, though she <b> has</b> improved greatly. It’s not the strongest. But she makes up for this with super cute characters that you just want to root for.

I’ve never been able to review a Draven novel very critically because, while I do admit they all have their flaws, they’re always entertaining as heck. Perfect for a me-night where you just take a break from all your responsibilities and curl up in bed with a cup of hot chocolate or a glass of wine (or, if you’re the adventurous sort, hot chocolate wine!) and a book.

The plot for this one was simple, and, alright, a little uninspired, but the romance is cute (sometimes sappy, but still cute), and Ildiko and Brishen are very likable, and that makes up for the lackluster plot. From the blurb for the sequel, though, I feel like things may pick up.

This gets four stars mainly for the fact that I couldn’t put it down, devoured it in one night, and REGRETTED NOTHING.


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