Review of The Emperor of Evening Stars by Laura Thalassa
#2.5 of The Bargainer
Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
I’m not satisfied with this at all… because I just want MORE. This novella completely from Des’s POV was so good and quite enlightening, I found myself disappointed as I neared the end as I wasn’t ready to leave his mind quite so soon. And it’s a clever and wicked mind at that.
”I stare at each one of their faces, and this is the moment where we all realize that the boy they thought I was, was a mirage. That this entire time they’ve been the field mice and I’ve been the viper lying in the grass.”
The story begins with Des’s childhood on Arestys and as it progresses we get a front-row seat on his path to becoming the Night King. Throughout this portion of the story we get some insight into the circumstances of his father’s demise and some foreshadowing of some circumstances that presented themselves in the second novel.
”All those evenings she watched me leave her, those are the illusion. Because the truth is, I have searched worlds for her, looked for her for centuries. I’ve held her a thousand times in my dreams, and I have died a thousand times upon waking.”
About halfway through the story Des has his first encounter with Callie and most of the story is a retelling of scenes we have already experienced through Callie. This was the heart of the story for me. The inner torment and anguish he experiences in his search and during his encounters with her were heartbreaking, despite knowing what the future holds for them at this point. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the way his mind battled with his heart through these chapters and really felt how deep the well of his love for her runs.
The story ends right about where the second book, A Strange Hymn ends, so if you’re hoping for more past that, this novella will not give it to you. What it will give to you is feels and a desire to continue the story the moment it ends.
I find that this series is one of those underrated ones you want to share with everyone that asks. It’s my guilty pleasure. It’s not innocent in the least and there’s something eerily mischievous and sinful about it. I picked up the first book, Rhapsodic, based upon several recommendations when I found myself with a massive book hangover after having just read Sarah J. Maas’ A Court of Thorns and Roses and Throne of Glassseries’. This series was exactly what I needed to awaken myself again and I am almost certain I’m going to find myself with a book hangover when it eventually ends as well. I’m so looking forward to the third book, Dark Harmony, to be released this winter!