Shadows of Asphodel, by Karen Kincy
Genre: Historical-fantasy romance
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Date of Release: May 11, 2015
Cover Artist: DamonZa
She never asked for the undying loyalty of a necromancer.
- Austria-Hungary. Ardis knows better than to save a man on the battlefield. Even if he manages to be a charming bastard while bleeding out in the snow. She hasn’t survived this long as a mercenary without some common sense.
When she rescues Wendel, it isn’t because he’s devilishly handsome, but because he’s a necromancer. His touch can revive the dead, and Ardis worries he will return from the grave to hunt her down. Besides, a necromancer can be useful in this world on the brink of war.
A gentleman of questionable morals, Wendel drops to one knee and pledges his undying loyalty to Ardis. She resists falling for him, no matter how hot the tension smolders between them. Especially when she discovers Wendel’s scars run much deeper than his skin, and it might be too late to truly save him from himself.
(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review).
(This review may contain spoilers).
I don’t read too many historical-themed books with elements of the paranormal, so this was a fairly good change of pace. It was interesting to see that magic was widely accepted, at least in some parts of the world… and also to see how people viewed those who could use magic; including the scarier forms, such as necromancy.
I did find Ardis to be a really interesting character, though I was a little confused about what she’d said about her father. I’d assumed he’d been killed, but then it turned out Ardis knew that he lived… and I don’t know if I misunderstood, or if that was something left in there accidentally.
I had some mixed feelings about Wendel in this book, I have to say. Although I found his powers quite cool to read about, there were various times when he came across as darker than even his history suggested… particularly towards the end.
I found Konstantin to be an interesting character and one I would have liked to learn a bit more about. I was hoping the romance would run a slightly different route… and it was disappointing to see that it followed the usual formulae. Even though I felt the chemistry between Wendel and Ardis was real, I did think it moved a bit fast between them.
I found the concept about Ardis’ sword to be quite intriguing, but was a bit disappointed that she didn’t take advantage of the opportunity to learn more about it and the enchantment placed on the weapon.
I would have liked to know a bit more about the different kinds of magic there were, though the ones that were explored sounded really interesting. I was confused about the concept of the Lazarus Project and what exactly it was supposed to be.
I’d probably read the sequel to this book at some point in the future. I’d like to see more of Konstantin in particular, but it would also be good to learn more about Ardis’ own past… and see how things go with her and Wendel a little way down the road.
About The Author
Karen Kincy (Kirkland, Washington) can be found lurking in her writing cave, though sunshine will lure her outside. When not writing, she stays busy gardening, tinkering with aquariums, or running just one more mile. Karen has a BA in Linguistics and Literature from The Evergreen State College.
Find Karen Kincy Online:
About Curiosity Quills Press
Curiosity Quills Press (CQ) is a small hybrid publishing company specializing in genre fiction of the highest quality. With 150+ titles in our catalog already and approximately 6 new books coming out each month, there’s never a dull moment at CQ. We work with major retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Audible to ensure that you, the reader, can find whatever you are looking for at your convenience.
Founded in 2011 by Eugene Teplitsky and Lisa Gus, CQ was initially a resource portal for writing and publishing, created in an effort to help writers, like themselves, survive the publishing industry. After rapid success, CQ morphed into publishing press that over time has solidified its share in the market. Now we spend our days searching for the next great escape!