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review 2017-03-01 03:36
The Summer Palace (Captive Prince Short Stories #2) by C.S. Pacat
The Summer Palace: A Captive Prince Short Story (Captive Prince Short Stories Book 2) - C.S. Pacat

And, finally, the last short story that's currently out for fans to read and devour! The Summer Palace is an epilogue of sorts to Kings Rising and I am LIVING for it! It follows Damen and Laurent after the events that happened in Ios. They both travel to the Summer Palace to rest, talk, and discuss what the future may hold for them.

 

I'm going to say this: If you love the trilogy, then read this short story right now! In my Kings Rising review, I said I felt the book ended abruptly. I felt there should have been more story to wrap things up a bit more smoothly. Well, this short story did that! It gave Damen and Laurent a proper ending and I implore you to read this so you can see what became of them after the "final battle."

 

The writing in this short story is a lot better than it was in the first short story. Where the first story felt rushed and choppy, this one felt like Pacat took her time to flesh out what she wanted Damen and Laurent to feel, to act. There were a couple of typos here and there but nothing too noticeable. I enjoyed the slower pace to this story because I felt it suited the atmosphere of the setting. I love that we got to see a much more domestic side to both of these characters and I love that we got to see Laurent open up and "thank" Damen for everything he's done.

 

I really love this conclusion. A lot. This short story is an excellent addition to the Captive Prince universe and if you're a fan, then you will DEFINITELY enjoy this as well. Give it a read!

 

Now to wait for the other short stories to be released... I hate waiting! X3

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review 2017-03-01 03:15
Green but for a Season (Captive Prince #2.5) by C.S. Pacat
Green but for a Season: A Captive Prince Short Story (Captive Prince Short Stories Book 1) - C.S. Pacat

And we continue on with the short stories from the Captive Prince trilogy! This short story takes place during book two and follows Jord. It explains how he came to be a part of the Prince's Guard and what he did whilst being Captain. It also touches a tiny bit on his relationship with Aimeric.

 

In short (no pun intended), I liked this story. I liked getting to know Jord a bit more. I also liked seeing him develop further than he was in the books. I will say, however, that I feel that this short story was a bit rushed. I know it's a short story and it's not going to have as much depth as a full length novel. But it just felt choppy in some parts. There was a moment I had to check to make sure that I didn't skip a part because we went from one scene to the next without proper transition. I would have also liked to see Jord and Aimeric's relationship fleshed out more than was in this story, which is what I initially thought this short story was going to be about. I wanted to see their relationship be explored because in the novels, I felt their relationship was hinted to be complex and I just... didn't get that in this story.

 

Still, it's a pretty good read for anyone who is a fan of the trilogy. I think you'd enjoy it even if it's a bit on the short side.

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review 2017-02-28 22:07
Kings Rising (Captive Prince, #3) by C.S. Pacat
Kings Rising: Book Three of the Captive Prince Trilogy - C.S. Pacat

Last year, I read the first two books in C.S. Pacat's Captive Prince trilogy and absolutely loved them! I loved them so much, my partner and I bought them as soon as we finished reading them to add to our collections! And it's only now that I am getting around to the third and final book to the trilogy (I know there are short stories that come after the series so I will get to them soon). I have to say I LOVED this book!

 

If you're familiar with the series, then this continues off where the second book ended. It continues Damen and Laurent's struggles of fighting a war with the Regent of Vere. I won't say anything of the plot because this IS wrapping up the story. However, I will say if you loved the first two books then you will love this one immensely.

 

The writing is breathtaking! Pacat's depictions are lovely. I adore the way she described scenery the most. The characters are just as engaging as they were in the first two books. And, yes, Damen is still dumb. I can't believe he wasn't able to figure out Laurent was raped and abused by his uncle. And, no, I don't consider that a spoiler because the hints were HEAVILY implied throughout the ENTIRE trilogy. So anyone with a brain could figure out the abuse Laurent had to endure from his uncle when he was a child. And then there's Damen... man, is he dumb. He really didn't know this entire time... and then he does something ELSE stupid later on that I can't say because that IS a spoiler but... it was just as stupid as not figuring out Laurent's rape. Still, Damen is dumb in a harmless way. In what I mean that he has his heart in the right place... even if he can't use his brain to save his life... LITERALLY!

 

Laurent really made my heart ache in this book. Knowing what we know about his childhood and how much he misses his brother, it pains me to see him trying to protect himself by pushing those away. He's also protecting Damen because he knows what kind of man his uncle is and he doesn't want Damen to have to deal with that. So Laurent does the one thing he knows how to do: Keep him at a distance by being a total ass to him! I swear, I love Laurent. I do. But he can be such a jerk sometimes. Actually, I find it quite hilarious the way he acts and responds with snarky/sassy comments. Laurent and Damen's relationship is such an interesting, wild, sometimes bizarre, ride that I can't help but LOVE it!

 

In short, I love this book. It's fast-paced, fun, steamy, and incredible! My one complaint was how it seemed to just end. The ending, I felt, needed to be dragged out a bit more. BUT! The short story, The Summer Palace, is an epilogue of the trilogy which is why I'm not too upset by Kings Rising stopping almost abruptly. Just keep in mind that you might want to have The Summer Palace nearby if you want to have a full conclusion to the story. 

 

The same warnings apply as to the first two books. So if you've read the first two, you know what you'll be getting in this one. There's sex, violence, adult language, mentions of rape, and murder. If you're okay with reading that then I highly recommend you read this book. These are fun books that you can read in one sitting if you're looking for a steamy mlm politically-run romp.

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review 2016-11-08 00:44
Prince's Gambit by C. S. Pacat - My Thoughts
Captive Prince: Volume Two - C.S. Pacat,S.U. Pacat

It was good.  Good enough that I kept picking it up in those times where I had 10 minutes to read or when I should have been doing some sort of household chore.  *LOL*

 

So, in this second volume of the Captive Prince trilogy, Damen and Laurent continue to learn more about each other as their relationship becomes more friendly and less adversarial.  As I got deeper and deeper into the book, I began to marvel at the plotting and planning that the author had done.  Just when you think you have a handle on how the story is going to go - BAM! - there's a sharp turn and you're left gasping for reading air!  *LOL*  I love it!

 

As far as the romance goes, well, it's a really slow burn.  Really slow.  And that's good!  It works and makes it all that much more believable.  

 

The only real problem I have with this tale is that Laurent is so damned young!  20 years old.  I have a hard time attributing all his talents and experience to him as he's so young, but near the end of the book things start to feel more reasonable - to me!  This is entirely me.  *LOL*  I have my own ideas about how certain things have come about and will have to read the last of the trilogy in order to find out if I'm anywhere near correct about them.  Won't be a hardship.  :)

 

So yes.  good book - good series.  Enjoying it very very much.  

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review 2016-09-15 15:02
#CBR8 Book 97: Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat
Kings Rising: Book Three of the Captive Prince Trilogy - C.S. Pacat

SPOILER WARNING - this review spoils the heck out of book two and the beginning of book three. Do NOT read if you've not read the first two books in the trilogy. Proceed at your own risk.

 

Damen's secret is out, and everyone knows he is in fact Prince Damianos of Aikelos. Vere and Aikelos are on the brink of war, with Prince Laurent's uncle, the Regent, amassing his forces, and Kastor, Damen's usurping and treacherous half-brother also on the war-path. The only way Damen is going to be able to reclaim his throne is with the aid of Laurent, the man who swore to kill him. Can Damen convince Laurent to set aside his enmity to face the bigger threat, his uncle?

Can the hesitant trust and growing love between the men be rekindled, even with Laurent being fully aware of Damen's true identity? Will they survive to enact revenge on their usurpers and can they have any future together, with full knowledge of the terrible actions of their pasts?

Here's where it gets hella spoilery, people. Seriously, do not read this if you haven't already finished books one and two. So yeah, Laurent knew about Damen, from the beginning. Having grown up in the viper pit that is the court of Vere, fighting the influence of his wicked uncle (who it's clear sexually abused him shortly after Crown Prince Auguste and his father died), Laurent is presented with his worst enemy as a slave, and told he's not allowed to harm him, or risk diplomatic relations with Aikelos. Of course he twists the situation so he can flog the living daylights out of Damen. Of course he mentally tortures him. This is the man that killed his brother! It makes the trust that builds between them, the friendship that turns to romance so much more remarkable, because while Damen didn't know that he knew, Laurent went to bed with Damen, despite his many (understandable) sexual hang-ups, even knowing exactly who he was.

He trusted him with an army and gave him control over one of his border forts, even knowing that he was the Prince Killer from Aikelos. The uneasy truce they form in the beginning of this book is an uncomfortable one, because you just want them to kiss (and more) and make up and turn the combined might of their brawn and intellects towards pummelling their enemies.

While the first book is slow and a bit confusing, because we don't have all the cards yet, and the second book is full of espionage, double-crosses, intrigue and romance, this book starts out well, but sort of collapses a bit towards the end. The stakes are oh so very high, but then the ending is sorted out oh so neatly, almost depressingly so. Everything falls into place just that little bit too conveniently and it all happens a bit too quickly to be entirely satisfying.

Not that the book before that isn't extremely enjoyable. Damen is back in the northern reaches of Aikelos, needing to muster support from the powerful lords of the country, all the while convincing them to support him against his treacherous half-brother, despite the fact that he's in open alliance with the true ruler of their enemy neighbour state. Damen and Laurent make an uneasy truce and have to prove themselves worthy of support, and outsmart the men who have taken what is rightfully theirs. This bit was a lot of fun, even if the angry tension between Damen and Laurent got on my nerves. I totally understand it, it would be massively unrealistic if they just jumped into each other's arms and let bygones be bygones, but still. I wanted my HEA.

And yet I complain when in the end, I did get a HEA for my dudes, but it just seemed to come a bit too easily. Still, in its entirety this trilogy is excellent, and I had such a fun time reading it.

Judging a book by its cover: These books have had a variety of covers, depending on the release. The newer, wide-release editions of these books are not exactly all that exciting, but play in rather well to the fantasy and political intrigue aspects of the trilogy, rather than the "two dudes are gay for each other and have some sex, but that is really a very small part of the whole". Various pastelly colours, with a brick wall, battlements or a tower in the background. A fancy font. A rearing lion. I think the marketing department has done a good job making really very neutral covers.

Source: kingmagu.blogspot.no/2016/09/cbr8-books-95-97-captive-prince-trilogy.html
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