I don’t even know where to start with my thoughts on this one, in large part out of fear of not doing justice to what I just read. Blood Mercy completely snuck up on me, in the best possible way. I just stumbled across it searching through book suggestions on kindle unlimited so I had zero expectations going into it.
Initially my attention was drawn to the absolutely GORGEOUS cover (yes folks, I am without a doubt guilty of judging a book by its cover). This prompted me to take a look at the blurb and I was sold from there. But once I started the book itself I was a goner.
For a quick synopsis; this book follows the story of Cassia, bastard child of the king, who has spent pretty much every minute of her life fighting to both stay off his radar, and also work behind the scenes to maneuver her way into the position she wants. The king has very little use for her beyond a bargaining chip. Despite her wanting to not be notied, Cassia manages to ensure her presence at one of the most important events of her lifetime, negotiations with the Hesperines which have not taken place in centuries.
The reasons for her desire to be present at this momentous event slowly become clear, though are in a sense eclipsed by the bond she develops with one Hesperine diplomat Lio, the other main POV character that this story follows. Steadily their relationship grows, one that is forbidden in any form due to the strife between their two kinds, longtime enemies.
This is just a simply breakdown of the story which is vast in scope and so much more than a romance. There is incredible world building and intensely interesting political intrigue that keeps the reader flipping page after page. I am an absolute sucker for high fantasy and it has been quite a while since I found one so enrapturing. Blood Mercy meets everything I could possibly want from a book of this genre. Every time I had to put it down it was begrudgingly done, because I never wanted to stop reading it (darn those adult obligations).
I cannot wait to dive into more of this series, and at the same time am so afraid to finish it all because I just want to stay in this world forever. When I tell you to run to read this series I absolutely mean it. This is a must read and I encourage everyone to pick it, especially the fantasy and romance fans out there. In case you missed it, the ENTIRE SERIES is on kindle unlimited! Vela Roth has become an instant read for me. I will without a doubt be buying these books from her shop.