I was approached by the publisher, TCK Publishing, back in September 2020 about reviewing one of their new books, The Rules of Enchantment by Wendy Tardieu. I was intrigued by the description (although the cover seems a bit off) and happily replied that I would like to review a physical copy in exchange for an honest review. But by the time the book arrived, the anxiety of 2020 had overwhelmed me and I wasn’t reading much of anything at that point. I felt bad about that, but the publisher understood and told me not to worry about it. Skip forward to February, where I was doing better with reading and reviewing, I finally started the book!
And I was enjoying it. The main characters were interesting and the magic system was fun to read about. I especially enjoyed Kyler’s self-discovery and character growth. The way she absorbs information, internalizes it, and then eventually decides to act in her own interest instead of just doing what she is told. In the next section, I’m going to briefly discuss some spoilers as I explain why the climax did not work for me. In case you want to skip over those.
The main reasons for my disappointment with the climax was that the author built up Kyler’s power and newly gained independent thought but then made it so she wasn’t put of the climax of the book. Instead she was possessed and held back although she did arrive late, just in time to save Leith in a clever way. I just wish she hadn’t been relegated to the sidelines after all her character’s growth.
The other thing that I was disappointed with (that may count as spoilers) is that the cover presented something that the book doesn’t follow through on. The tagline includes erotic fantasy adventure and while there is plenty of fantasy and some adventure, there are only like two-ish sex scenes and one made me feel uncomfortable. That feels more like romance level not so much erotic level.
The last thing I want to mention is that the author uses omniscient third person to tell the story but tends to flip between POVs with no warning. I didn’t hate it but it was occasionally confusing until I realized what was happening. Overall, I liked the world, the concept, and the characters. A fun diversion when you want a short escape from the anxiety of real life. I’ve included some links below in case you’d like to learn more about the book, author, or publisher!
And the author’s website:
When a Sorcerer and a Scribe Team Up to Fulfill an Ancient Prophecy, The Fate of The World Lies in Their Hands
In the mythical kingdom of Salyndria, an exiled sorcerer named Leith plots to overthrow the restrictions placed on the use of magic by the Academy. Suspecting the worst, the Academy sends a beautiful young scribe, Kyler, to be his apprentice and act as an unwitting spy.
Leith tries to drive her away by proving his reputation as a vicious and unforgiving master, but he soon discovers his new pupil is far more useful than she appears. As her charms and magical abilities become all too tempting for him to resist, the two join forces to fulfill a hidden prophecy that will grant them incredible power.
Together, the sorcerer and the scribe will change Salyndria’s history forever.
Their story is equally sinister and sensual, a romantic dark fantasy adventure full of suspense and surprises.
Fans of Defended by Darkness by Terry Bolryder, A Torn Paige by L. Rose, Innocence by Dean Koontz, and The Vine Witch by Luanne G. Smith will love this fantasy romance.