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Year of the Reaper
The past never forgets . . .
Before an ambush by enemy soldiers, Lord Cassia was an engineer’s apprentice on a mission entrusted by the king. But when plague sweeps over the land, leaving countless dead and devastating the kingdom, even Cas’ title cannot save him from a rotting prison cell and a merciless sickness.
Three years later, Cas wants only to return to his home in the mountains and forget past horrors. But home is not what he remembers. His castle has become a refuge for the royal court. And they have brought their enemies with them.
When an assassin targets those closest to the queen, Cas is drawn into a search for a killer…one that leads him to form an unexpected bond with a brilliant young historian named Lena. Cas and Lena soon realize that who is behind the attacks is far less important than why. They must look to the past, following the trail of a terrible secret—one that could threaten the kingdom’s newfound peace and plunge it back into war.
-Excerpt taken from Goodreads.
Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.
(4 / 5) Isn’t the cover fabulous? I grabbed this one loving the story of a broken Cas returning to his kingdom after being held prisoner for 3 years. Plague has ravaged his world in that time and the royals have temporarily taken over his court.
Cas was my favorite with his harsh past and kind heart. He was very affected still by his previous captivity and it showed. Being able to see spirits was such a great aspect of the story. It brought in an interesting element of being able to learn things from them that he wouldn’t have been able to otherwise. Lena and Ventillas were great supporting characters, adding in those friendships that were so crucial to him.
The middle was slow at times but I found myself still interested in the story. It’s a tale of finding ones self and learning what’s important. Helping those you love and doing what’s right. I liked the writing and the imagery the author brought to the story.
I liked the twist that I didn’t see coming! With betrayal, ghosts and a plague, what’s not to love?
I did wish I had more info on why he saw spirits. Did he die and come back? Did he connect with the after life? Even the title doesn’t play into the story much other than the plague. That being said, I still really liked it and am looking forward to reading more of her other books.
Content Summary: Minimal language, very minimal intimacy/romance, few details with violence and blood, a near drowning, previous torture and seeing dead spirits.
Thank you to Clarion Books for the gifted copy in exchange for an honest review.
The book releases November 9, 2021.
Detailed Content Review
Derogatory terms etc-
Alcohol, Drugs, Smoking
Barrels of wine are brought to an impromptu celebration.
A man drinks wine. A young man too.
A man and young man drink wine.
A young woman appears to have been killed by poison.
Many are poisoned and vomiting. One woman is killed from the poison.
Intimacy, Sex, Immodesty
*Minor LGBTQ+ aspects included*
A man mourns the death of his secret (male) lover.
Previously, a man was castrated for falling in love with the Queen.
A young woman and young man kiss.
Violence, Weapons, Crime, Blood
A young man has many scars. Some from whips, some from boots, and around his wrists from cuffs.
Previously, a young man was beaten. Kicks to the stomach made him cough up blood.
When a young boy scatters a man’s chickens, the man takes the boy over his knee. The boy couldn’t ride his horse from the pain.
Someone shoots an arrow at a woman holding a baby, she falls off a bridge with the child, into the water.
Previously, a group of soldiers are killed in an ambush.
A man holds a knife to a man’s throat but instead cuts off his hand as others watch. It is a punishment.
A young man is beaten.
Previously, a man took a knife to a man and killed him.
Many lynx attack a group. They are shot and killed with weapons.
Someone hits a young man on the head, knocking him unconscious.
Previously, a man killed a woman for a woman. He was killed and his head and his horse’s were stuck on pikes as punishment.
A man is found stabbed to death. In his home were found jars full of body parts and even a woman’s womb.
Previously, a man chained patients to a table and experimented on them. Possibly horrifically. Many had been imprisoned and chained.
A young man knocks out a young man with the hilt of his sword and chains him to the wall.
Two young men fight with sword and mace.
A woman is held prisoner as blackmail for her husband. Her finger is sent to him. She is later drowned. A man is shot through the throat and dies. Blood is everywhere. Two men fight, two women fight.
Potentially Intense Themes
A man falls unconscious with the plague. He has a fever and a large boil that pulses.
A young man sees spirits of people who have died. This happens many times throughout the book.
A young man finds a man’s body that has been dead for months and animals have eaten his innards. He buries him.
A young man saves a woman and baby from drowning.
Previously, many dead bodies (plague) were placed in the water as they could not keep up with burials.
Previously, a woman died in childbirth with the baby.
A young man relives a near-drowning in his dreams regularly.
A young girl is found malnourished and alone.
Previously, a young boy and man died in a kitchen fire.
A young man comes upon bodies of two people killed by the plague and a lynx.
A young man finds two skeletons embracing in a burned house.
**Any quotes from the book may be taken from the advance copy and therefore may not be fully accurate or correctly compare to the final copy of the book.
**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
This sounds like it has some great themes! Happy to hear you enjoyed it!
Good questions, this one sounds good!
I’m so glad you liked this one! This is one of my most anticipated reads of the year.