Prayer of the Handmaiden (Legends of Ithyria #2) by Merry Shannon ~ Book Review by PizzyGirl

BSB-PrayerHandmaidenTitle: Prayer of the Handmaiden (Legends of Ithyria #2)

Author: Merry Shannon

Publisher: Bold Strokes Publishing

Cover Artist: Kaitlyn Porter with Cover design by Sheri

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Publication Date: 03/17/2015

Length: Long Novel (~ 100K+)

Genre: Action/Adventure, Alternate Universe/Alternate World, Fantasy, Fiction, Historical, Lesbian Romance

Blurb:

When the Goddess Ithyris appoints shy priestess Kadrian to become Her first shaa’din, or holy warrior, in a millennium, everyone is mystified by Her decision—especially Kade herself. On the battlefields of Mondera, as Kade struggles to defend Ithyria from a dangerous new enemy, she’s also brought face-to-face with her greatest personal temptation: the childhood sweetheart who had once nearly kept Kade from her spiritual calling.Erinda was born into the service of the royal family. Endless household chores and a passion for horses fill her days, but her nights are consumed with hopeless longing for the woman she lost to the temple seven winters ago. Erinda knows Kade will never return to her. After all, what mortal could ever hope to compete with a Goddess?

The Legends of Ithyria Series Book 2

My View:

Prayer of the Handmaiden is a story of how love drives all parts of the world. Even in times of war and despair, it is love that moves us forward. It is love that drives our souls to happiness and completion.

 

This was a grand adventure set in a well established historical alternate universe. The world was fantastic and the story itself was interesting. It took a bit for me to get into however. There was a lot of time spent on character introductions, worldbuilding, and plot set up. These things were absolutely necessary for this story to be as complete as it was, but it often stretched out a bit too long and I just wanted things to move forward.

 

Once the plot was initiated and the adventure and fighting began, I was enthralled. The author painted some gruesome pictures of the barbarians and the risks the Queen’s men and women  were taking. She engaged my mind with the battles and the images she described, but overall she engaged my heart as Kade and Erinda, and even Talon were subjected to daily trials that risked their hearts as well as their lives. I wanted nothing more than for the fighting to end so that everyone could live and love happily ever after! I fully connected with all the players in this story and was happy with the outcome.

 

One thing I did struggle with was the massive amount of self deprecation and self inflicted sacrifice many of the key player endured unnecessarily. I really just wanted one character to stand up for herself and take what she wanted. After so many instances of the characters stating how another would be better off with someone else, I wanted to fling this book across the room! But I am glad I did not because in the end, they all came to their senses and did the right thing. But I could have done with less focus on how each woman was “not good enough” or “not right” for the love of her life. It began to overshadow the other good the author was trying to accomplish in these relationships.

 

This was book 2 in a series, but I did not feel I needed to read book one to truly enjoy it. There was enough backstory to set things up nicely. There was also a great setup for the next book to come. I just hope it is published quicker than this one because I want to read that story as well.

Links

Prayer of the Handmaiden (Legends of Ithyria #2) on Goodreads
Bold Strokes Publishing
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
All Romance eBooks

I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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