Half stars GoodReads, please!
I wanted to give this book 3.5 stars, because I liked the book. It was an easy read, quick and angst-less. I was commited to the story until the last page. A much better experience with Kathryn Le Veque this time around. (I got stuck with another book from her 4 months ago and I still have not gone back to it.)
Now onto why ONLY 3.5 stars: characterization.
1. I have never come across such a hero. I almost did not want to forgive him because.....he is a warlord!! maybe it is the way of wars and I can see how he could have been perceived as weak had he shown more mercy (not that he didn't. when the heroine asked him, he folded like a cheap tent). I have fewer problems with Catherine Coutler's heros than I did with Ajax in The Dark Lord. How is this possible?
2. How loving and wonderful Ajax is with Kellington is just....out of character. Ajax is supposed to be this fierce merciless warlord that used fears to control and to conquer. Then he met Kelli and started to smile and wink. As much as I would like to believe that, I can't. I can tolerate a lot of things in romance novels but this character change was not done well. I think it may be conceivable had there been more interactions between Ajax and Kelli to prepare the readers mentally for his 180 degree personality turn-around. And maybe more gradual chances too.
3. Kelli is waaaayyy too considerate and understanding. I ALWAYS prefer a reasonable herione than a crazy woman who turns every encounter with the hero, asshole or not, into a shouting match or a battle of wits over her priceless independence. Problem is, it is just not done in a way that is convincing in this story. I cannot find it in my heart to be so understanding like Kelli. Granted, Ajax did make huge improvements, however unlikely it is. But I was not convinced of that either. That made it harder to accept Kelli's understanding nature.
I had a good time reading this book. If the characters were not so overly much for me, I would have given it 4 stars.