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Monday, October 4, 2010

The Prince of Val-Feyridge by Helen C. Johannes

The Prince of Val-Feyridge by Helen C. Johannes
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Historical, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (438 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 4 books
Reviewed by Orchid

Prince Arn has a destiny-an ancient throne-but he’s not waiting for fate to deliver when he can act now, before his enemies organize against him. The healer Aerid longs for her barely remembered homeland. Marked out by her gift and her unusual looks, she insists she is no witch.
The swordsman Naed hopes to honorably defend his uncle’s holding, but he harbors a secret fascination for the exotic healer. Prince Arn’s campaign against Aerid’s homeland throws them into a triangle of forbidden love, betrayal, and heartbreak. Only when they realize love is blood-kin to friendship, and neither is possible without risk, can they forge a new alliance and restore a kingdom.

A warrior and a healer - a strange combination for love.

Arn leader of the Tolemak army has regained his heritage and now intends to combine the three parts of the kingdom separated by the sibling rivalry of the rulers. His first stop is D’nalee where he meets Aerid a younger healer of Adanak birth.

Aerid attempts to return to her birthplace. His successful occupation of D’nalee behind him, Arn’s moves his army to take Adanak. Distrust, battles and interference from both Tolemaks and D’naleans cause confusion in the minds of Aerid and Arn. Neither wishes to acknowledge what they feel for each other. Arn sends her away but then is unable to forget Aerid.

The interaction between Arn and Aerid was vibrant. Aerid at first seems a demure young lady healer, but she proves to have a strong determination when her right to heal is called into question.

I usually like this type of book but I found this story dragged a little bit. I had to keep stopping for a break, then come back to it to revive my interest. The story didn’t seem tight enough for the length of the book and I think it could have been told in far fewer words.  However, the fact is I kept coming back -- I was invested enough to want to know what happened.

The world and the political situation are very much part of this book bringing tension to the various characters. To get what they desire, some use intrigue, others use honour, and the enemy is not always where the allies expect to find them. Drawn apart, thrown together, all through the book the question is - will Arn and Aerid give in to their feelings or will they refuse to acknowledge their strong attraction to one another?

If you enjoy a full length epic style story, then this is the book for you.