Prince Gabriel of Rhyddon is the reluctant heir to the faerie kingdom of Eilithia. It’s said that there is nothing more beautiful than Eilithia and the Tylwyth Teg faeries that live there. Gabriel would disagree. Since being enchanted by the seductive temptress Aneira, a powerful witch who spoke his name four years ago, he has not seen the beauty in anything. Imprisoned by indifference and oblivious to any power but Aneira’s corrupting passion, Prince Gabriel’s mind may no longer be his own, but he will never give her his heart. That was taken from him long ago, and only glimmers of that joyous pledge keep him sane.
Somewhere across the earthly realm of Wales, Taryn of Hamilhawk dreams of a magical forest with music in its trees and a man who holds her heart in his hands. But she’s afraid of magic and, looking out her lonely tower window, prays each night to forget him. She has no idea that soon she will be his wife and that she will somehow save both him and herself from a force that threatens their future. She would never imagine that her path to passionate love will be filled with faeries, a talking tree, and a shape-changing king… and best it not be revealed until Taryn is free to bring her own magnificence and resilience to bear.
All she knows is that he calls out to her in her dreams. “Save me, Taryn.”
And her heart, no matter how she tries to deny it, must answer.
***Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for a review.***
The fantasy setting is typical faerie fare; a magical realm just off from human lands where everything’s coming up roses. The human realm’s pretty idyllic, too- but that’s what comes from dealing with faeries in a romance novel.
There’s a conflict contained herein, but it gets lost in the shuffle to the point of almost being an afterthought. The romance between Gabriel and Taryn is what’s key here, and while it works and is *very* romantic- I have to give props for that- it overshadows everything else. Key details get glossed over, mentioned after the fact or just dropped in out of the sky, and it doesn’t help that at first you don’t even know why these two are being thrust together. Taryn suddenly appears on the scene, all forlorn and lonely in her father’s castle, and suddenly *BAM!*- Gabriel shows up to marry her to secure an alliance. Literally never saw it coming, and the reasons for it won’t appear until the finale.
Characters are interesting in that they show a few cracks in their tropes, some actual character. My favorite was Elusen, Gabriel's faerie half-brother who has a somewhat unhealthy attraction to Taryn, which plays a key supporting role in the story.
The dialogue is too formal at times, stiff and stilted. A clear style choice from the author, but it clogs up the story. Hearing a character refer to events from when they were ten and three years old knocks you right out of things.
Which brings me to the narrative. Again, being a romance, the relationship between our main couple is the focal point, but there’s supposed to be a looming obstacle in Aneira’s glamour over Gabriel standing in the way. It gets shorted a lot; the motivations for Aneria’s actions are never really clear, especially towards the end where a couple of twists are revealed and even some characters are wondering what the reasons for them are, only to never be answered. The author’s style shines when shifting to Taryn’s POV; her thoughts and impressions of her growing attraction to Gabriel make for the best moments in the story. There’s not enough of them and they’re too few and far between, making for very slow going.
Faerie Tale: The Enchanted has its moments and a solid premise to build upon, but needs some tightening up to make it really shine.