Friday, May 11, 2012

The Fifth Son by Blaine D. Arden

The Fifth Son by Blaine D. Arden
Storm Moon Press
Short Novella: 60pgs
Rating: 4/5

Llyskel is the fifth son of a King, but, unlike his brothers, he doesn't have a career in politics or the military to look forward to. In a world where everyone possesses magic to some degree or other, Llyskel is powerless, unable to perform even the smallest magic-based tasks. All his life, he's been under constant guard for his own protection from the magical world around him, much to his annoyance. The only time Llyskel feels free is when he paints, where the only spells he needs are the ones he weaves with brush and paint, capturing moments of beauty and giving them immortality on canvas.

Llyskel harbors a secret wish, though, a dark desire that haunts his nights. Only Ariv, a captain in the King's army, seems to sense the truth of Llyskel's needs. The pull he feels to Llyskel is unavoidable, and the passion between them undeniable.

But Ariv isn't the only one interested in Llyskel. The Queen of a neighboring country expresses her interest in the boy's talents, but her true intent goes far beyond a love of art. And what she asks may be too high a price for any of them.

Llyskel likes to paint and he does it in abundance, since he has no other duties as a fifth son and prince in his family. His life is even more dull because he is magic less in a world filled with magic. He is doted on by his parents, and protected like a newborn because he has no way to protect himself. So Llyskel spends his time painting, and watching his brothers and soldiers train. There is that odd time when he gets to spend a little time by himself but it takes a bit of scheming and hoping he isn’t caught by his brothers or guards. In that solitude, Llyskel can think about Ariv, the man who turns him on like no other.

Ariv is a Captain of his father’s army, and he alone knows the desire that lies with Llyskel's heart. Together the men discover an explosive passion, and it sets the course for life changing events for Llyskel. There is more that meets the eye when it comes to the fifth son, and he will discover his confidence and uniqueness in the arms of the man he so longed desired.

What a surprising short this one turned out to be. It brought the sexy, a little action, and romance. That one hell of a combination and with the magic it was just down right entertaining. I really enjoyed Llyskel, he embodied youth with the right amount naiveté and maturity. Love him and Ariv together they were so hot and did some surprising things in the bedroom 'you naughty boys'. There is a bit of drama and enough characterization to keep the reader engaged and helps with keeping the story from falling flat. Taking Llyskel out of his comfort, and offers him the chance to blossom on his own.

Overall, I really liked it and I am surprised. Blaine is really good at creating a fantasy world and interesting unforgettable characters. I am peeved it wasn’t longer, but that seems to happen to all the good books. They are never enough, but I believe my pants are quite thankful.

4 Pants Off


  1. This sounds tempting but I have so much to read already (oh poor me) but I'll add it to my Goodreads list anyway. I can't resist finding out what just what kind of naughty the two get up to.

  2. This is an early comment but I just wanted to say “Thank You” for letting me be included in your Hop Against Homophobia. I am afraid I am not a talented m/m fiction writer like yourself and your authors but I am an avid reader of it.

    I guess I do not fit into any category really since I write non-fiction for an adult gay studio.

    But this is a cause I feel strongly about and I wanted to let you know I appreciate the opportunity to be included.

    I put a post up at the top of my blog on May 5th and it will remain up until May 19th.

    Since I do not write books I will be donating money to PFLAG here in the U.S. in the name of the winner.

    Thank you again for the inclusion.


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