Of Fire and Ash / Summer Queen

Summer Queen

This review is brought to you as part of the Virtual Book Tour for Summer Queen, hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Please note that this review may contain spoilers for its prequel, Winter Queen. You can read my review of this novel [here].

The Fairy Queens series was written by Amber Argyle, author of the highly regarded Witch Song series. They are high fantasy novels, set in a world where the balance of nature is controlled by powerful faeries. The series currently consists of two novels – Winter Queen (2013) and Summer Queen (2015) – and the novella Of Fire and Ash (2015) which falls between them. The third novel of the series has been titled Daughter of Winter, although a release date for this has not yet been set.

As a child, Nelay made a deal with the faeries in order to save her father’s life. She has always known that one day they will return to her to collect a heavy price for this but as the years rolled on, gradually her ability to see the creatures has faded. She is now an acolyte at the Temple of the Fire Goddess and the High Priestess is about to ask her to make a terrible sacrifice.

Zatal, King of Idara, has been fighting an endless war against the invading Clansmen, yet his forces are failing. To make matters worse, his wife has born him only daughters and so he has no heir to carry on his dynasty if he falls in battle. The High Priestess has offered Nelay to him as a Queen, promising that she will be set free from the unwanted marriage only after she has given the King three sons.

Yet Nelay has other plans. With the help of her friend Jezzel and the handsome smuggler Rycus, she manages to escape the Temple and flees across the desert. Her only concern is to reach her family home and ensure that her family are safe from the encroaching Clans. What Nelay does not realise is that she is merely the pawn in a larger game. The faeries still want for her to uphold her end of the bargain and the price they are asking is far greater than she could ever have imagined.

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