Book Review: King’s Lament by Lilia Blanc

After Inea's father, the King, dies, the royal advisors plan to sell Inea to their rival kingdom's queen, but Ansyn helps him escape. Months later Ansyn finally catches up to Inea, who has been in hiding, and, after a rocky start, the two find that they need each other, as well as their new ally, Kaedon, and the three struggle to handle their unexpected romance as they work toward getting Inea back on the throne where he belongs.

Book Review: King's Lament by Lilia Blanc | reading, books, book reviews, fantasy, high fantasy, lgbt, m/m/m
Title: King's Lament
Pages: 449
My Rating: 2.5 Stars
More Info: Goodreads, Amazon


*I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher. This has in no way influenced my review.*

This book had a lot of potential, but it was one of those books in which the issues just kept pilling up for me.

– I didn’t understand why the three main characters loved each other. The best I could figure out was that Ansyn loved Inea because he had loved both of Inea’s parents and Inea was like them, Inea loved Ansyn and Kaedon because he was sheltered his whole life and they were the first two men he ever came into contact with who also liked men, and the rest of the love was based on sex and loneliness. So it felt instalove-y even though it wasn’t.

– There was so much crying. And so much angst. I like some angst in my books, but it needs to be warranted. Ansyn and Kaedon had plenty of their own tears and angst, but Inea’s was the most extreme. He had only been struggling on his own for about five months, but he was constantly having meltdowns and talking about how his heart was turning cold and uncaring and closing off and how he would soon become nothing more than a tyrant of a king who didn’t love anyone or anything because everyone always abandoned him. I never saw any of this coldness though until all the sudden around 70%, and then it just seemed like he was being petulant. Speaking of which…

– Inea himself was childish, overdramatic, and innocent to the point of it not being believable. And all he seemed to care about for a while was making Ansyn happy. He was going to change who he was just to be someone Ansyn would like. And once he got over that, all he seemed to care about was Ansyn and Kaedon not leaving him. I understand being hurt if people you love leave you, but life does go on if that happens, and Inea was supposed to be focused on getting his throne back. I don’t like to describe any character as pathetic, but… Inea kind of was. And he wasn’t someone I could see running a kingdom. Then, when another character called him out on that (I liked her, she said everything I wanted to say), he basically threw a tantrum, acted selfish, and blamed everything on Ansyn and Kaedon. And he was going to storm off on a suicide mission just to prove a point. On the other hand, he did eventually realize that he was a jerk to everyone, and that one character called him out for his behavior, so he might have been written the way he was on purpose (i.e. it wasn’t bad writing, I simply didn’t like the character). And the fact that Inea didn’t know how to run a kingdom, didn’t know what to do to gain support, didn’t know how to fight, was overwhelmed, etc. was realistic.

– Kaedon was too “perfect.” He was this big, scary ex-assassin, but he was always so kind and caring and selfless and romantic and apologetic and willing to die for them and even willing to let Ansyn kill him if that was what Ansyn wanted.

– Ansyn was the most believable character, but his emotions were also too extreme.

– The sex scenes were even more unrealistic than most fictional sex scenes already are.

– Characters were constantly getting sick from being in the cold, which is not a real thing. And even if it were, you wouldn’t get almost immediately. But it did make for some hurt/comfort, which is a plus for anyone who likes that.

The thing about this book is, it wasn’t all bad. I feel like I actually could have loved it—I like angst when there’s good reason for it, I like dramatic situations in relationships, I like heart-wrenching emotion, and I like menage romance, so the plot and romantic struggles were my kind of thing and ripe with potential for giving me all the feels… except I still need the characters to feel and act realistically with emotions that are more subtle and not so blown out of proportion that it makes me roll my eyes instead of actually feeling bad for them. And I need to understand why the characters love each other and feel that love so that I can then feel their pain when they have struggles, their joy when things work out, etc.

So overall this wasn’t quite for me, but anyone who likes lots of injuries/sickness, menage, “perfect” sex scenes, dramatic emotions, lots of angst, and innocent, damsel-in-distress type male leads would probably like this more.


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  1. Greg

    Interesting cover. It almost sounds like the fantasy here was tacked on and the author just wanted to do the menage storyline. And Inea sounds artificially cold, like that’s how the author wanted him to be but it didn’t show up until later? Kaedon definitely sounds like too much of a good thing. Sorry to hear this one had problems- like you said it sounds like it COULD have worked with maybe a little more finesse.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Now that you put it like that, the getting back the throne part does seem like it was very secondary to the menage. But I mean, even that could’ve been good had it been written better. Inea wasn’t even cold, they just kept saying he was when in reality he was just dramatic and petulant. And there’s definitely such thing as too good or perfect when it comes to characters. Thanks, it’s too bad because it really did have potential!

  2. Luna & Saturn

    This does not seem like a great book. That’s us though, always getting sick in the cold – that would’ve been so realistic to us. And we live in Melbourne where we don’t get minus degrees, not sure how we’d last in the US or somewhere story though. You’re right when it’s not almost immediately though, it’s like a sniffly nose or sore throat that pesters you forever. We’re not too fond of angst. Great review!
    ~ Pendragons 

  3. Danya @ Fine Print

    I want to read more queer fantasy, but to be perfectly frank I don’t think this one will be a good fit for me. I really struggle with angst in romances (I get that it’s kind of a requirement, but why does it have to be soooo over the top in some stories?) and instalove is just a total non-starter.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah I wouldn’t recommend this if you don’t like angst. I’m ok with some angst, just not when it’s so over the top. If you want recs for m/m fantasy though, you can check out my lgbt tag 🙂 They’re mostly fantasy since that’s mostly what I read lol.

  4. Keionda @Keionda Hearts Books

    I’m with you girl! I don’t like a terrible amount of angst in my books (Well, I do because I I like the drama becaue it makes things more juicy, especially if it’s a ROMANCE. *Wink Wink* I kind of like the sound of this story (I think it was the cover that drew me in) But I don’t like the sound of weak s that feel the need to cry every five seconds. That could get kind of tedious…. o_O

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I do like some drama in the romance in books, so I definitely agree there, but it still needs to make sense. And yeah, I don’t have anything against a character crying, but that also needs to be for some sort of believable reason and not just a constant thing!

  5. Uma @ Books.Bags.Burgers.

    Oh wow it sounds like the author made a list of tropes and strove to tick them all with this book! Reasonable angst is fine but angst for the sake of angst is annoying! So are sex scenes that seem plastic. And Inea seems like a character I’d end up hitting on the head! Doesn’t sound like King material at all! Sorry you had a bad book experience but great review though 🙂

    1. Kristen Burns

      Exactly, the angst just needs to be reasonable and I’ll be ok with it! And sex scenes are no fun if they just feel fake. And lol, he really didn’t seem like king material to me either. Thank you!

  6. Lola

    Sorry to hear this one didn’t fully work for you, even though it had aspects which you did like. Same as you I like drama and angst when it is ell done and there’s a reason for it But when it gets too blown up it just feels like it’s too much.

    I always dislike it when people mention you get sick form cold as that isn’t true. So that would bother me even if them being sick makes for good comfort scenes, I still rather have the being sick be realistic as well.

    And lol at your comment of the sex scenes being unrealistic as well. And sometimes you just don’t like a character even if they act realistic or aren’t badly written. Inea doesn’t sound like a likeable characters.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Exactly, there needs to be a reason. And yes, thank you! The cold can make you more susceptible to catching something, but you still don’t get sick from cold alone. Idk if I’m really a fan of the hurt/comfort thing or not, but I’m ok with it as long as the reason for getting sick is realistic.

      Well it’s true lol, most sex scenes are kind of unrealistic, but this was just… too much.

  7. Bookworm Brandee

    Whoa. I’m thinking you were rather generous with the 2.5 stars, Kristen. There just isn’t anything you can do when the characters aren’t believable or relatable. You just can’t connect and therefore you aren’t invested in their story even if there are elements that you typically like in a story. I’m sorry this was a bust for you. Hopefully your current read is great!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Idk, ratings are hard lol. But yeah, it’s hard to be invested in a story when you just don’t believe the actions and emotions of the characters. Thanks!