Tag Archives: author: c.s. pacat

2016 in Review: #10 & #9

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Another year come and gone–and some fantastic reading adventures along with it! As I typically do in January, I want to take some time to review some of my favorite reads of 2016.

Note: These are the best books I read in 2016, not necessarily published in 2016.

#10 Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat

Kings Rising

This long-anticipated conclusion to the Captive Prince series did not disappoint! I was pulled right back into the world of the story–right from the cliffhanger ending of the previous book that left many readers chomping at the bit to get their hands on this. I’m also pleased to see the author’s rise to success in taking this from a free story posted in installments on LiveJournal back in the day to an international publishing contract. It just goes to show that you just need the right person to notice your talent to get your break.

Read my review from August 11 for more on this title.

#9 Phase Shift by Jenn Burke & Kelly Jensen

Phase Shift

And here’s another final chapter in a great series. I didn’t know what I was getting into when I picked up Chaos Station back in early 2015, but I quickly became attached to these characters and their world. Over the course of the five books, the authors delivered some amazing consistency and quality writing that really bring this world to life. I don’t always go for space travel stories, but there was no question for me from the first book that I’d be following this one to the end.

Read my review from May 2 for more on this title.

Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat

Kings Rising

Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat

Series: Captive Prince, Book 3
Published by: Penguin Australia on February 2, 2016
Rating: 4 stars (★★★★☆)

To keep order, Damen had to allow his identity to be revealed. Now that the men know who he is, he must claim his place as Damien, rightful king of Akelios. And he can safely assume his budding relationship with Laurent, rightful king of Vere, will be destroyed by this revelation.

But Damen and Laurent need to put their relationship issues aside. There are bigger problems that need their attention. Laurent’s uncle, the Regent, is still set on claiming the throne of Vere for himself. And his alliance with Damen’s brother, who wrongfully claimed the crown in Akelios, gives Damen all the more reason to help Laurent.

The path before them won’t be an easy one. Their armies are sworn enemies. Damen killed Laurent’s brother. And Laurent kept Damen as a slave. Any alliance between the two of them is likely to be rife with dissent and dysfunction. If they can manage to find a way to work together, they might not only achieve their respective birthrights but also get back to the place they were in before Damen’s truth was revealed.

Even a king can hold out hope, no?

I remember finishing the second book in this series. The cliffhanger ending caused me to literally scream out loud. It was one of the most wonderful and frustrating endings of a book that I’ve ever read. So I was so excited to pick this one up and see how the story continued.

Overall, this is a very fitting conclusion to the trilogy. So many of the questions are answered and gaps are filled. And some of the things that readers didn’t even know to question are explained. The twists and turns are in line with what someone who read the first two books would expect.

2014 in Review: #2 & #1

ID-10088833Now that 2014 has drawn to a close and 2015 is here and upon us, I wanted to take some time this month to reflect on the best of what I read this past year.  I read way more than I ever have in a single year (306 books!) and while a few of them were not ones I’d recommend, most books were compelling and engaging reads.  While everything I’d recommend is either already here on the blog or still to come (I’ve some reviews already queued out into March), I’m going to highlight the 10 books I read in 2014 that I rated a whopping 5 stars.

Note: These are books I read in 2014, not necessarily published in 2014.

To begin, let’s take a look at two of those titles:

#2 – One Man Guy by Michael Barakvia

Michael Barakiva’s debut novel is a young adult, coming-of-age gem and is truly extraordinary.  Alek is growing up in an Armenian-American family and must reconcile the pressures of his family’s expectations with who he is and wants to be.  When he meets Ethan, an older boy with a bit of a reputation, he finds a whole new world he wasn’t prepared to explore on his own.  See my full review of One Man Guy.

#1 – Captive Prince: Volume Two by C.S. Pacat

17158513The incredible sequel to Captive Prince sees Damen and Laurent’s relationship grow in some very interesting ways.  And it also means that Damen’s secret is going to be harder and harder to be kept hidden.  See my full review of Captive Prince: Volume Two.

Image courtesy of adamr at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Captive Prince: Volume Two by C.S. Pacat

17158513Title: Captive Prince: Volume Two
Author: C.S. Pacat
Published: May 22, 2012
Pages: 216
Publisher: C.S. Pacat (rereleased by Berkley Books)
Publisher Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Review:
The intrigue, the tension, and the stakes are all intensified in the second volume of the Captive Prince series. Damen is still enslaved to Prince Laurent and has managed to keep his true identity–that of crown prince of the neighboring kingdom and the one who slayed Laurent’s brother in battle–a secret. But Damen still hasn’t given up the hope of returning home and reclaiming his rightful place on the throne.

When Laurent’s uncle, the Regent, begins to move against him, however, Damen and Laurent find themselves force to move from the castle and instead to the country’s borders. But faced with potential battles, Damen cannot hide his own skill and prowess. And although he might be able to strike a tense peace with his master, will he be able to keep the truth of his identity a secret until he can earn his freedom?

Everything about this book is amazing. The story builds in an almost incredible way, with every single element of the plot seeming to be part of a perfect mathematical equation. C.S. Pacat proves to be a masterful storyteller and there were times when I was literally on the edge of my seat while reading this one.

Be warned, though, this one builds to an incredible cliffhanger finale that you may not see coming and that will leave you screaming out loud for the final book in this trilogy…

Captive Prince: Volume One by C.S. Pacat

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Title: Captive Prince: Volume One
Author: C.S. Pacat
Published: February 4, 2012
Pages: 240
Publisher: C.S. Pacat (rereleased by Berkley Books)
Publisher Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Review:
Damen, Prince of Akelios, knows that someday he will be a great king. He has proven to be popular with his people and has all the trappings of a great leader. But when his half-brother takes the thrown as part of a violent coup, Damen is resigned to a much different fate. He is given as a slave to Prince Laurent, the incorrigible heir to the thrown of neighboring (and rival) Vere. Damen finds himself in a dangerous predicament due to Laurent’s nature and the political climate of Vere. But what’s even more of a risk is that Laurent blames Damen for the death of his brother, making it clear he can never allow his true identity to become known.

This is an extremely well-written and engaging story–I had a very hard time putting it down while I was reading. The character development and world building is superb and it is so easy to become invested in the lives of these characters. There’s a great deal of suspense here as well, not only because of Damen’s position but also between Laurent and his uncle, and Laurent and many other members of the court. I definitely give this a very high recommendation.