Kings Rising – Captive Prince: Volume Three by C.S. Pacat

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“I think if I gave you my heart, you would treat it tenderly.”

Title: Kings Rising – Captive Prince: Volume Three
Author: C.S. Pacat
Why you should read this book: Because this is the last book of a trilogy that blew my mind and I want to share it with everyone.

Summary from Goodreads:

Damianos of Akielos has returned.

His identity now revealed, Damen must face his master Prince Laurent as Damianos of Akielos, the man Laurent has sworn to kill.

On the brink of a momentous battle, the future of both their countries hangs in the balance. In the south, Kastor’s forces are massing. In the north, the Regent’s armies are mobilising for war. Damen’s only hope of reclaiming his throne is to fight together with Laurent against their usurpers.

Forced into an uneasy alliance the two princes journey deep into Akielos, where they face their most dangerous opposition yet. But even if the fragile trust they have built survives the revelation of Damen’s identity – can it stand against the Regent’s final, deadly play for the throne?

“You’ve spent a morning with him and you’re warning me off. Just wait,’ said Damen, ‘until you’ve spent a full day with him.’
‘You mean that he improves with time?’
‘Not exactly,’ said Damen.”

Spoilers ahead, I want to write about everything, about the glorious ending of a magnificent trilogy about two wonderful men, love, treason, war, demon/pedohpile/uncle, flirtatious glances, horses, women tribes, naked sport events, etc.

We left the second book with the revelation of the real identity of Damen, aka Damianos true King of Akielos. Laurent left to face his uncle’s man, to a place that was 200% a trap, as usual, and Damen stayed in Ravenel with Akielon soldiers, ones from his past. Nikandros, an old friend of Damen is leading the troops. Nikandros, Nikandros, what a great guy. Nikandros is really a loyal friend and he knows how to save the day, he speaks words of truth, Damen really needed him by his side. Nikandros saw Damen looking at Laurent with eyes full of love, lust and everything nice. I think that without Nikandros Damen would’ve been dead by the first quarter of the book.

There were many frustrating moments, ones that lead me to humming sad love songs and that had my heart in so much pain. One was at the beginning of the book when Laurent said he knew all along that Damen was Damianos, his brother’s killer and that everything was a plot to hurt him. I was 100% sure Laurent knew who Damen really was, it couldn’t be any other way but I wasn’t expecting the “I’m going to stab your heart and watch your feelings kill you” scene. I thought Laurent was a little too mean and he didn’t need to be, he had to say the truth to Damen, hold a grudge because he killed his brother but admit he has fallen for him unwillingly and now they had to killed their usurpers, get married and ruled all the kingdoms together. Laurent chose a tortuous way back into his arms.

“There was a warmth in his chest whenever he looked at Laurent. He didn’t look often for that reason.”

Yes, a way back into his arms because, of course, they couldn’t stay away from each other. It’s love, you know? One that can’t be shut down by the end of the life as they know it. Damen being jealous because Laurent took a slave to help him unlace those terribly complicated Veretian clothes. Laurent trying to be cool watching Damen’s legs and arms all exposed in that tiny Akielon mini dress.

He let his lips form half-smile. “You aren’t going to offer me one of your gaudy Veretian handkerchiefs?” “You could use the clothing you’re wearing. It’s about the same size.”

I love those two and I’m going to miss them so much!

You know who I’m not going to miss??? Demon/pedophile/Uncle is the one I’m going to miss less. How can a man be so devious and evil? Why were everyone so loyal to him? You knew there was something clearly wrong with him, you could all stand together with Laurent and kill him, nobody would have missed him, everyone would’ve lived happily ever after.
Another one I’m not going to miss is Kastor but there weren’t many scenes with him so the main villain of the entire story is, of course, the Regent, master pedophile, lord of the bullies and winner of the Worst Human on the Planet Award. How much I hate him, you don’t know. Kastor is evil but he wouldn’t have done any of the things he did without the Regent’s mastermind behind it. Also, not without Jokaste, the Lady Jokaste, the lady who wanted to rule and needed a weak prince to be able to do it.

There were so many interesting characters and also very interesting situations. It was the perfect conclusion to this rollercoaster trilogy with two men, princes, now Kings of their own countries that want to be united out of love, wanting their kingdoms to be one again and wanting the safety of their citizens.

“Guilliame came to talk to him, since they were the same rank.
‘Lamen. That’s an unusual name.’
‘It’s Patran,’ said Damen.
‘You speak very good Akielon,’ he said, loudly and slowly.
‘Thank you,’ said Damen.”

I am really going to miss them, Laurent of Vere, Damianos of Akielos, this was a great adventure and I’m happy I could share it with you both.

Do I recommend it? Of course, I think that if you give this trilogy a shot you won’t regret it.
Rate: 5/5

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Prince’s Gambit – Captive Prince: Volume Two by C.S. Pacat

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“To get what you want, you have to know exactly how much you are willing to give up”

Prince's Gambit (Captive Prince, #2)

 

Title: Prince’s Gambit – Captive Prince: Volume Two
Author: C.S. Pacat
Why you should read this book: Because after reading the first book of the trilogy you can’t stop, you need to see how this is going to end.

Summary from Goodreads:

With their countries on the brink of war, Damen and his new master, Prince Laurent, must exchange the intrigues of the palace for the sweeping might of the battlefield as they travel to the border to avert a lethal plot.

Forced to hide his identity, Damen finds himself increasingly drawn to the dangerous, charismatic Laurent. But as the fledgling trust between the two men deepens, the truth of secrets from both their pasts is poised to deal them the crowning death blow.

“Then, in the spirit of benevolence, “Your face is well balanced.” She slapped him encouragingly on the back, “You have very long eyelashes. Like a cow.”

It contains spoilers, it’s a wonderful sequel of a wonderful book!

Ohhh that was hot, a steamy improvement from the first book. I loved it!!
We left Laurent and Damien leaving the Palace of Vere to go to the border following evil regent’s orders. Damien insisted on accompanying him because it was 450% a trap set by his evil uncle. Was he wrong? Of course not, that man is so evil he deserves an entire country in hell.

During the month of travel, Damien is starting to see Laurent differently. He thought he was only manipulative and really smart but he has so many other layers. It was so good seeing the walls around him crumbling down, not only for Damien but also for his men, the soldiers he needs to win against the DemonUncle. Seeing Laurent being funny and flirtatious was one of the best things in this book.

“Stop enjoying yourself,” Damen murmured. “We’re going to be killed, any minute.”
“Giant animal,” said Laurent.
“Stop it.”

Laurent is smart, not your usual “I can take myself out of anything” smart but more like “I am planning revenge since I was 13” kind of smart. Nothing seems to surprise him more than necessary, it seems that he expects everything, every betrayal, every attack. How many eyes does he have??? Can he see what lays ahead of him? I think that since he doesn’t sleep much, when he does, his dreams show glimpses of the future. That’s the only explanation.

“After a long moment Laurent said, with painful honesty, “I…find it difficult to let go of control.”
“No kidding,” said Damen.”

There were so many twists I wasn’t really expecting. New characters that made me like them but then revealed themselves to be very different. Some had their own illogical reasons, others were only pawns in an evil game meant to transport Laurent to a more comfortable palace…in heaven!

Laurent’s way to win game after game against DemonUncle surprised me. He knew everything that had to be done. He knows a lot of things so I wonder if he already knows Damen’s secret? I hope so, it would make things much easier and a happy ending truly possible. Please, let me be right!

I would have loved to see a couple of chapters from Laurent’s pov, it would’ve been interesting to see what was on his mind during more than one scene. ONE SCENE in particular. Damen and Laurent’s staring games were driving me crazy, I was screaming in my head: “Kiss him already, what are you waiting for???”.

This book was “adequate”! Read it and you’ll understand what I mean.

Do I recommend it? Of course, everyone should have a chance to love Damianos and Laurent.
Rate: 5/5

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Captive Prince: Volume One by C.S. Pacat

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“A golden prince was easy to love if you did not have to watch him picking wings off flies.”

Title: Captive Prince: Volume One
Author: C.S. Pacat
Why you should read this book: Because it’s different, it’s not porn, it has erotic descriptions but in the right doses.

The main character is Prince Damianos of Akielos, aka Damen, kidnapped by his step brother and sent away to enemy land, Vere, to be a slave, a pet, sex companion of Prince Laurent. He can’t ask for help because Laurent hates Akielos, his brother and father died many years before by their hands, more precisely, by Damianos’ hands.

“Laurent could inspire homicidal tendencies simply by breathing.”

I must say I really enjoyed this book. I was surprised by it, I didn’t expect it to be this complex. It’s a story about power, treason and difficult people with, I bet, a hard past.

Damen doesn’t know what to do, he knows he needs to escape but, if he succeeds, what is he going to do? He doesn’t have a home to return to, but his stepbrother Kastor needs to pay for what he’s done, usurping the throne, making him a slave, sending him away and telling everyone he is dead. In Vere’s palace he is cuffed and put a collar on, he is sent to take weird baths, sent to watch perverted entertainments and forced to be in Laurent’s company, whom would be exactly his type (fair skin, blue eyes, blonde) if he weren’t really cold and mean.

Laurent has secrets, a difficult past I am sure we are going to learn, he is cold, rebellious and not friendly at all. He is prince until he reaches his 21st birthday and can reclaim the throne fron his uncle, now Regent. Guess what?? This so-called uncle isn’t really a good person and will use anything in his power to discredit his nephew and, why not, kill him. Laurent is really cold with Damen, he is known for not bedding slaves and Damen is no exception because he is from Akielos, which he hates. He will learn to have feelings for him, if he doesn’t have a little bit already. Laurent’s behaviour changes a lot, he really is a very complexed character.

“Nephew. you were not invited to these discussions.’
‘And yet, here I am. It’s very irritating, isn’t it?’ Said Laurent.”

There are lots of side characters with their stories, their difficulties, etc. The author gives you real people in a weird world. We have various personalities and they are all written perfectly.
What I loved about this story is that it has a little bit of everything, it’s not focused on love or sex, it doesn’t have gratuitous nudity or violence just thrown there to please some readers. It has deep characters interacting in a complex world with games of power, mystery, jealousy and a little bit of “heart affairs”.

I’m sure I will love what this author has to offer, I will read the sequel asap. Did you read that Pacat lived in Perugia?? That’s where I live, crazy, right???

Do I recommend it? Yes, it’s written nicely and it has a lot of shades to it, twists and mysteries to unsolve.
Rate: 4/5

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