The King’s Men by Nora Sakavic
Series: All For the Game, Book 3
Published by: Nora Sakavic on December 3, 2014
Rating: 4 stars (★★★★☆)
Neil Josten is back on campus, more than a bit worse for wear. He took on his rival to keep his teammates safe, whether they like it or not. And he hopes it will be enough to keep Riko off their backs until the end of the season. Because he doesn’t expect to be alive must past that.
But something’s happened since Neil’s been with the Foxes. His desire to run isn’t quite as strong. And then there’s Andrew. His hard-to-read exterior isn’t quite a difficult for Neil to decipher as it is for everyone else. And there are moments when he thinks there’s something there. But even if there’s not, Neil won’t be coming back from the summer, right?
As the season progresses, Neil thinks that just maybe he can pull through. But he seems to have forgotten that there’s more than one person that’s been after him. And secrets can only be kept buried for so long…
If you want to talk about slow burn, this is up there as the ultimate. Third book in the series before the relationship between Andrew and Neil that’s been building at an almost painful pace finally has some sparks. But don’t get me wrong: it’s all worth it. There’s so much dysfunction here that it almost drips off the page, but I find myself devouring every scene.
My only complaint is that I wish there was more. Kind of disappointing to see this one end.
Content warning: violence.
Title: The Raven King
Author: Nora Sakavic
Publication Date: July 10, 2013
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Review: The second installment in this series, I found The Raven King to be just as gripping as the first. While the first book gave us some insight into the life and background of Neil Josten and his new teammates, this one takes us even deeper – and we learn the truth about the past of the rest of the Foxes (including a few secrets that some of them hoped would never be known). And after Neil embarrassed Riko on television, he knew Riko wouldn’t let it slide, but is he truly prepared for what Riko may do in response?
Honestly, this one was just as difficult to put down as the first book. There were more twists in this one than the first, and it really went in some unexpected directions that really surprised me, but kept me hanging on for more. I can’t wait for the third and final book in this series.
Content Warnings: [Violence, Sexual Assault, Murder, Torture references]
Title: The Foxhole Court
Author: Nora Sakavic
Publication Date: January 15, 2013
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Review: Much like many of the reviews I’ve read since I finished this book, I picked it up without any real expectations. It was available for free and looked mildly interesting, but it definitely surprised me and made me incredibly glad I took that chance.
Neil Josten has been running from his past for as long as he can remember. When his skill in a sport known as Exy get the attention of a recruiter at Palmetto State University, however, he has a decision to make: keep running or take some time to pursue playing the sport he loves. And the fact that the team’s new star player is someone that he knew in his past seems like a point in the favor of either decision.
The way Nora Sakavic builds the world and slowly introduces the characters is something that really keeps the reader engaged (at one point, I sat down to read a chapter and got up nearly 10 chapters later) and demonstrates a skill in storytelling that I haven’t seen in a while. One has to suspend some disbelief to accept aspects of the story (I just settled on the idea that it takes place in the near future to explain some of the differences in societal norms and regulations), but Sakavic makes it very easy to do so. For a book that is touted as having m/m romance elements, it is a bit light on that front (they’re mostly hinted at in this book), but I expect they will continue to build in the future books in the series.