Title: The Devil's Concubine
Author: Jaide Fox
Published in 2005 by New Concepts Publishing
Genre: Fantasy Romance
King Talin is not pleased when he hears the news of King Andor. It enrages Talin, hereditary ruler of the Golden Falcons that he would be downplayed and forbidden to engage in the contest. Granted, he has absolutely no desire to wed a human, but the prejudice against the unnaturals has made him to feel as if he is an unworthy adversary and that is what is irritating. He has his own plan to garner the hand of lovely Aliya. After disguising himself as a human, a prince from another land, he enters with the others that have assembled for the contest. In one quick move, he quickly steals Aliya and takes her to his kingdom, only to make her his concubine instead of his wife.
Talin wishes to find a true love but did not expect the one person that would win his heart would be a human or that he would have to kidnap her because of an insult to him and his kingdom. After taking Aliya for his own, he only offers her the union of being his concubine not wishing to insult his lineage with her as his wife. At least being his concubine would hold high honor among his nation giving her a position only second to the Queen. Talin holds feelings for Aliya that he has never felt but keeps it within himself. He does everything in his power to make her happy and at ease with his family. He wishes to learn everything about her and her family as he ponders as to why the humanís despise the unnatural.
Princess Aliya is at the age for marriage and the news spreads far and near that she is indeed the most fairest of all. She is favored not only in her appearance but with a heart of gold, every suitor that is deemed heir plans to vow Aliya and make her their own, no matter if it explodes in war. It seems as if politics once again has intervened. Her father realizes that whomever he gives her hand can ultimately lead to war. He devises one way to use her to his advantage. He plans a contest for only the most brave and most powerful to champion for her hand. There is only one drawback; no unnaturals may compete in the battle for his daughterís hand. One thing that King Andor will not tolerate is for his beautiful daughter to be in the hands of the creatures of the shaded world.
Aliya refuses to be a trophy in some alliance game her father designs. That is not her way to have a fulfilling love. But as a princess, she must do as her father directs. Standing alone in complete silence she must follow her duty to her father. She realizes that her father will not permit any unnaturals to partake in the rival for her attentions so she has nothing to fear until she finds herself being whisked away by Talin. She has heard that Talin is a ruthless leader, one who is crude and uncaring. After she is taken captive by Talin, the spawn of the underground gods and locked in his tower, she is determined to not allow the heights to overwhelm her as she tries to acknowledge her destiny. In no time she sees a different side to Talin, one unbeknown to the outside world. As her feelings change for him, she doesnít know which is worse, her fear of heights or the way her heart burns for him.
Talin only intended on confronting King Ardor about his insult on the Goldone but his curiosity to the princess won over and one thing he never anticipated on was falling in love with a human. After being offended by King Ardor, there was only one thing left to do and that was to kidnap Aliya. He understands that his actions might enhance a war but he refuses to be insulted by King Ardor, her father. King Ardor started the procedures by not acknowledging the unnaturals. Talin knew his advisors were ready to fight and this would begin the process. Once Talin has Aliya in his possession her honor will indeed be tarnished. Aliya is not happy that her father insists she become a prize in his coalition. When Talin kidnaps her, placing her in a tower, she is forced to stay with a man that is callous and rudimentary, as well as try to overcome the phobia she encounters within the boundaries of the tower.
Talin is not certain about the humans and the more he pries into why they hate the unnatural it begins to draw a spike between him and Aliya. He doesnít wish to lose her and everything that they have shared but he feels like he may lose the whole lot even Aliya before itís over. Neither has any understanding that they are only being used as collateral in a war that others wish to ensue. Amidst all the excitement, Talin and Aliya face their true feelings for each other as they discover where their true strengths lie in their situation.
The Devil's Concubine is a story that stirs the emotions of the heart. Take a leader that is considered insensitive and malicious to discover that he has a tender heart underneath that rough exterior who finds a woman that matches wits with him and you have a wonderful story of two strong people determined to make a difference in the world. The writing is incredible, the dialogue great and the emotions and feelings of the characters stand out making this a story well worth the read.
Jaide Fox has penned a fantastic read on shape shifters and their world that explores many events that are quite believable. She entails a story of influential leaders who seek to battle, while others are caught in the deadly trap as relationships stir and hate generates for those wishing power. The setting is so vivid that it puts the reader into the center of the story. The Devil's Concubine is a remarkable story that blends excitement and credibility to the characters. I loved the characters of Talin and Aliya. The secondary characters make a great addition to this wonderful tale that is quite captivating. Be sure to buy a copy today at New Concepts Publishing, you will be delighted you did.
Sincerely good reading,