By the King’s Command… Daimyo Akihiro Shimada didn’t have the hatred for humans that many of his kind did. It was a known fact that humans were weak. Every dragon knew that. When the king commands him to take a human as a mate, Akihiro is instantly smitten with Isei but fully aware that he must treat his mate with gentle care, even if his gut instincts say otherwise. Isei Hironaka is a second son. He has no chance of ever being anything more than he is until he is forced to impersonate his brother at the King’s coronation ceremony. When the new king orders him to mate with a dragon, Isei is positive his ruse will be discovered. Mating to strengthen the bond between clan and clutch is one thing. Staying mated is an all together different story, especially when those around Akihiro and Isei believe dragons and humans have no business falling in love and they will do everything within their power to keep them apart.
Series previously reviewed here:
In each book of this series the king pairs a human with a dragon shifter (or two) and there is initially disgust by one or both at the pairing with another species. The general theme of hate, followed by insta-love, problem/separation, reunion is also in all 5 books. There are some pretty fun “differences” between human anatomy and dragon anatomy. Aaaand everyone ends up pregnant at some point. So each of the books is fairly similar but has their own unique points and – I gotta tell ya – I loved this series! Book 2, Eastern Embrace is my favorite for quite a few reasons, but it will give you a sense of the series. They don’t need to be read in order.
The writing pair of Stormy Glenn and Olivia Black is an excellent one. Stormy (I think) tempers some of Olivia’s darker tendencies and Olivia seems to add some grounding to Stormy’s more fantastical nature. Both are great at hot male on male romance and so, so creative!
In book one the world is set up – sort of Medieval with a twist – where the King is magical and is protecting his boundaries by pairing up humans and dragon-shifters so that all the beings in the area will be on the same “side”. When the King mates the couple they have 24 hours to bond then they must go to their home to present a united front to their “subjects”. In this case the couple has previously met but there was a big misunderstanding and now they must see if they can find that love again.
In book two the human is not the actual leader of his people, but a stand in for his brother. He ends up being mated to the dragon and therefore the new leader by default even though he is quite small and timid. It’s this timidity that makes his new dragon keep him sequestered away (at the advice of the evil midwife) which ultimately leads him to believe he is not good for anything and thus gets him almost killed. (This is my favorite of the series!)
What I loved about this was the deep, deep pain felt by Isei (the human) then the amazing remorse shown by the dragon, Akihiro, who does absolutely everything wrong. There are some family drama moments and lots of dragon lovin’.
I loved this entire series and this book the most – highly recommended to fans of shifter romance with a strong hurt/comfort element and mpreg!
4.5 of 5 stars
Copy Purchased For Review