Reviewed by JustJen
Title: The Master
Author: Kate Aaron
Series: Free Man #3
Genre: MM Fantasy
Length: 170 Pages
Publisher: Croft House
Release Date: November 24, 2014
Available at: Amazon, Smashwords and All Romance eBooks
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Being rescued was only the start.
Otiz lies in ruins. As underlord of the region, Lysander knows where his responsibilities lie. He has an obligation to the survivors to rebuild their homes and their lives. But what about his home, his life?
Kai needs help. The damage inflicted on him goes beyond the marks left when he was tortured, but healing him might require more from Lysander than he’s capable of giving. Of one thing he’s certain: Tam and Kai will never be endangered again because of who he is, even if saving them means setting them free.
All Lysander wants is to be left in peace. To recover from the horrors of his experience at the hands of his enemies. But with pressure piling up from every angle, peace is the last thing he’s likely to find. Suffocated by guilt, Lysander begins to spiral. How can he hold everything together, when inside he’s falling apart?
Review: What a wonderful little fantasy series this has been. This one, as the title suggests, is told in Lysander’s point of view. The guys are all on the mend but still recovering at the castle.
It doesn’t take long before doubts set in, mostly from Lysander, as he feels guilty for his role in the suffering of not only Tam and Kai, but of the people of Otiz and his home as well. This was the worst part for me, his constant reminding us of this fact, but the rest of the story is so wonderful that I was able to set it aside.
There are quite a few character developments that happen this time around. Kai is still trying to deal with his scars and how the guys see him, but they do a fabulous job showing him how they see beyond them, that he is not damaged goods and still a whole person. Kai makes the biggest strides here, both with himself and with his relationship with Lysander. It takes a while, but eventually that trust comes back stronger than before.
Tam is still the same sweet guy, but he comes out of his shell a bit more when he is tasked with helping heal the people of Otiz. They spend a considerable amount of time trying to help the people there and to rebuild the town. There are some powerful scenes there, especially involving Kai, where he finds a purpose and acceptance among the children and people.
The lies and secrets eventually come to a head – I was turning pages very quickly to get to these details. They are the source of many of Lysander’s problems, but there is also development here that includes his wife and her lover. Everything just really came together, even though, at times, it wasn’t easy for any of them. In the end, true feelings won out as everyone realized what was important and what they cared about the most.
I’m a bit sad to see the end of this. I couldn’t read it fast enough, but I didn’t want to let these guys go. It was truly a fabulous read, from beginning to end. I loved getting each of the guys’ perspectives and watching them grow and end up loving each other. Fantastic world building, vivid details, and even some smexy to go along with it. I highly recommend this to anyone looking for an interesting fantasy that has a little bit of everything to offer.
Overall Impression: I loved it!
*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*