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Lovers and Beloveds by MeiLin Miranda


Lovers and Beloveds by Meilin Miranda (An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom #1) 

Synopsis
Naive and sheltered Prince Temmin arrives at the intrigue-filled court of his father and finds his world turned upside down. In short order he's the target of assassins sent by enemies he didn't even know he had, saddled with his family's immortal advisor, and falling for the beautiful twins Allis and Issak.

But the twins are the embodiments of the Gods known as the Lovers. To be with them, Temmin must fulfill a prophecy so old it's moved into folklore--a prophecy that may signal the end of the monarchy--and his father does everything he can to stop him.

Haunted by a magic book that immerses him in stories of his ancestors, Temmin must choose a path: one leads to ultimate glory for Tremont, the other to its end.

Set in a place and time where magic is nearly forgotten and a new industrial age is dawning, "Lovers and Beloveds" is the first book in the series, "An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom." 



* * * 
Let me rave and rave and rave about this book! I had the same out of body experience when I finished Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey. In some ways this book is similar, but it's different.
There are two strong interconnected story lines. First is Prince Temmin and his coming of age and personal development. Second is a fairytalish story of prophecies and enchantments, good prince vs. bad prince and magic, which is a secret history of Temmin's ancestors. 

Temmin's Teacher is some sort of Merlin that has been helping and advising the ruling dynasty for a thousand years. His way of teaching young and naive prince is to let him read this secret history, where he literally lives through everything that happens to the enchanted Princess.

After each session Temmin comes out changed a little bit, his perception of the world and people around him changes as well. The Prince is spoiled and ignorant, but he's got a good heart, he helps people around him.

When during one or the society balls he sees the twins Allis and Issak who serve as The Embodiments of gods Neya and Nerr in a religious structure similar to the one of Carey's world, Temmin is smitten. Allis and Issak in turn see some potential in him as well and suggest that he  becomes a Supplicant of their Temple.

The rest of the book is Temmin's struggle to make his choice and his father desperate attempts to stop him by way of intrigues and threats.

The characters are amazing, the development, the tension between Temmin, Allis and Issak is something magical. This is an erotic story in alternative reality very much like Victorian England of the 19th century, but it's not steampunk.
I don't even know what it is, but it's something special, mystical and touching. I loved it, and I can't wait for the next book which hopefully comes out by the end of 2011.
The story starts slow, but you get so involved anyway and it picks up after first 100 pages so much, that you just can't put it down until the end. I know, because I finished reading it last night at 4am and went straight to Paypal to donate some money for my free copy to the author. :)

I have to say that the book is an indie which had a unique funding. Basically 48 fans got together and collected $2500 to sponsor fantastic cover and beautiful editing. I hear second book is being created much the same way. You can go on author's website and read about it.
I can't recommend it enough, but if you loved Jacqueline Carey, you would love this!
Favorite scene: Allis, Issak and Temmin in the garden.

* * *
Изумительная книжка. Помните, я её в субботу рекламировала? Вполне возможно её всё ещё можно достать на Smashwards бесплатно, код купона здесь.

Сначала предыстория. Это книга независимого автора, который выкладывал кусочки книги на своём блоге, пока 48 фанов не решили, что книга настолько хороша, что собрали 2 с половиной тысячи долларов, которые ушли на хорошего редактора и создание обложки. Вторая книга спонсируется точно также и выходит ближе к концу 2011 года.

Любовники и Возлюбленные - это история псевдо-викторианского общества сродни Англии 19-го века, только без подавленной сексуальности и с системой божеств похожей на ту, что создана в мирах Жаклин Кэри.

Теммин, молодой принц и наследник престола все свои 17 лет провёл в провинции со своей матерью, он очень наивен и ничего не знает о женщинах, интригах и опасностях столицы. На 18-летие отец забирает егов столицу, чтобы начать его обучение с таинственным древним Учителем, который действует как некий Мерлин при каждом короле династии.

Как и каждому королевскому сыну при рождении Королева Цыган дарит Теммину своё пророчество.
Учитель начинает его обучение, заставляя Теммина читать мистическую книгу, в которой он переживает на своей коже что происходило с его предками 7 с половиной веков назад.
Таким образом сюжет книги раздваивается - с одной стороны мы читаем историю зачарованной принцессы и принца, отказавшегося от трона, его злого брата и пророчеств, висящих над ними.

С другой стороны Теммин, который после каждого прочтения переосмысливает свою жизнь и своё восприятие женщин. Теммин встречает Алис и Иссака, брата и сестру, воплощающих бога и богиню любви и плодородия - Нейю и Нерра. Два раза в год боги спускаются на землю и принимают их форму, в остальное время брат с сестрой служат в храме божеств и развлекаются в обществе. Теммин заворожен ими обоими, и Иссак и Алис видят что-то в нём и предлагают ему стать Соискателем храма. Если всё упростить, остальной сюжет о том как Теммин пытается им стать, а его отец путём интриг и угроз пытается его удержать.
Всё очень мистично и трогательно, невероятное напряжение между Теммином и Воплощениями, замечательная история зачарованной принцессы и принца.

В книге есть эротические моменты, так что если вы не любители такого чтива не стоит читать Мейлин Миранду ли Жаклин Кэри.
Начало немного медленное, но всё-равно затягивает и сам не замечаешь как проглатываешь всю книгу и совершенно не можешь остановится.
Я закончила читать в 4 утра и тут же пошла на Paypal и отослала автору денежку, потому как ну очень хочу прочитать продолжение :))
Вот так.

Любимая сцена: Алис, Иссак и Теммин в саду.

10/10



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