Mage Bond is Eden Winters’ new fantasy romance that expands into what could be the beginnings of a epic fantasy series.
The novel’s first chapters are also the characters upheavals out of their familiar lives, putting them ,as well as the reader , on their own personal journeys to bring them together.
We’re introduced to two boys, initially so different in backgrounds and families. Arkenn’s small family life is one of secrets, hiding high in the mountains, and, his fleeing in pain and loss.
The other? Petran’s lives aboard a pirate ship, the Seabird, with his Captain father, and a host of seafaring mates.
The energy and sense of a fantastic adventure is here with the youth at the beginning of their journeys. You get a real idea of mystery, and the fate pulling them towards each other.
Each will realize great personal loss, and achieve enormous growth through challenges they undertake, but it’s on paths they take separately away from each other for a while.
And this is where Winters lost me momentarily.
While the young men are together and exploring their backgrounds, powers, and sexuality, Mage Bond has a real chemistry and dynamic energy.
But as soon as a brown cloaked priest can say , “you’ll see each other again one day” , and pushes each away towards different “journey “, the story starts to loose something.
Now as Arkenn becomes Martin and Petran becomes Peter, each needs their own book in a way. In trying to insure that the main characters acquire all the necessary elements for their powers to be believable, Mage Bond ‘s middle section’s overly packed exposition reads more as a told to which slows down the momentum of the narrative.
For me, at least, it’s not until, Martin and Peter are brought back together that we regain the original energy and the storylines their strengths.
From that moment on, it just starts pouring on the narrative speed as we learn more about all the monsters, the Grand Evil that’s plagued the world, and the real identities of some of the characters who have been playing major roles in everyone’s lives.
The resolution to the end of all the battles is one that’s left me thinking. I can’t exactly roll out doubts here without giving away major spoilers. But while the battles were splendid, the final solution had a few patchy tears in it . Logically speaking. If that’s all it took to take “care” of the villain at the end, then why not just do it at the beginning? It doesn’t follow all the arguments for the reasons it starts at all. I don’t know. Just wasn’t satisfying as a logical, thoughtful ending.
It does set up the possibility for a series of stories with quite a few characters from this book going forward.
I really liked Martin/Arkenn and Peter/ Petran. They have the potential to continue to grow into a even more powerful couple. There’s several other people and beings that helped make this a enjoyable experience.
I found Mage Bond entertaining and it’s lead couple easy to connect with. If you’re a lover of fantasy and this author, this is a story you’re sure to want to pick up.
A long-ago meeting sets fate into motion…
As captain of the city guards, Martin protects E’Skaara by day. At night, he creeps in shadows to defend the citizens from predators most cannot see. He’s escaped from his past as a mage-born lad who’d nearly destroyed a village in self-defense. The three things he can’t so easily elude? Rage at a deity who condemns mages to death, memories of a pirate who saved him, and the magic he must conceal.
Tavernkeeper Peter keeps secrets. Secrets that can get him killed: his desire for men, a pirate past, and magical abilities. He should run from the one place mages cannot be safe, but yearning for a lost love binds him to where they shared their last kiss, waiting for one more glimpse of a dear face.
When dark forces reunite them, the magic both men try so hard to hide might just be their salvation.
Mage Bond is now available for preorder on Amazon
This reviewer was given a copy to review by the author.