Lacuna hit all my fantasy high notes perfectly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Well, that was a cracker!
I absolutely adore fantasy, it’s my first love and I’m always really happy to see more authors in the MM genre writing it.
With Lacuna, Nic does an excellent job of not only creating a fully immersive world, but bedding a romance into the heart of the narrative.
The premise is simple, four kingdoms, four rulers, one rare event requiring them all to gather, then betrayal and threat from outside forces. But it’s the way she then weaves the culture of her creation into the story which worked so well for me.
Crow, King of the Northlands, and Tancho, King of the Westlands, couldn’t be more opposite if they tried. There are influences in their Kingdoms from our own cultures, the Northlands are icy and vaguely Scandinavia, the Westlands are all watery and heavily evocative of Japanese culture.
An unexpected event at the gathering of these four rulers forces Crow and Tancho together and theirs is a sort of “enemies” to lovers romance.
They were never actual enemies but there’s animosity at first, which slowly, because of circumstances, turns into mutual admiration and respect – and a possibly slightly unhealthy dose of jealousy which provides a lot of the humour in the story.
With a wonderful cast of supporting characters, this story races through a complicated, but never confusing, plot involving alchemy, astronomy, a wee bit of magic and a lot of collaboration and bravery.
While the main plot is resolved in this story, there is enough left that I think there could be more to come and I would very much love to read more. Crow and Tancho’s relationship may have originally begun through forces outside their control, but it very much became one of mutual love and trust.
I also loved the other two rulers of the Eastern and Southern Kingdoms, both Elmwood and Samiel (the only Queen) were engaging characters with definite personalities and I’d be very happy to read more about them too.
Definitely one of my favourite books from Nic and I absolutely LOVE the cover.
#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review