Series: Once Upon A Man 01
Author: Jade Astor
Genre: Historical, Medieval, Paranormal, Alternate World, Vampires
Length: Novella (132pgs)
Publisher: Silver Publishing (30th June 2012)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥3 ½Hearts
Blurb: Albion leads a sheltered life until he is chosen to break the curse that has befallen their king. A nightwalker who feasts on human blood, King Jasper knows regaining his humanity means draining the life from the man he loves.
A man-loving twist on a classic tale. The younger son of a powerful lord, Albion leads a sheltered life with his father and half-brother, Rosarius. Everything changes for him when he is summoned to King Jasper’s palace. Much to his brother’s resentment, Albion is chosen to help break the curse that has befallen their ruler.
Forced to live as a creature who shuns the daylight and feasts on human blood, King Jasper has nearly given up hope of finding the true love that can restore his humanity. Just as he starts to believe Albion may be the one to heal him, a mysterious assassin tries to put a stop to their growing passion. With the forces of dark magic working against them, Jasper and Albion must find a way to outwit death and forge a life together.
Review: Albion gets his first glimpse of the King, when he is taken to court after his coming of age. He can scarce believe the tales his brother tells him and is shocked to learn his brother wishes to ensnare the King. But, his brother’s plan backfires, when Albion is chosen instead. Jasper has fallen foul of a curse laid upon him because of his father’s actions, now forced to drink blood and living in darkness he only wishes to break the curse. But, finding the one man who can break it is difficult, when Albion seems to have an effect on him, someone sets out to get rid of Albion.
This is a well written twisted rendition of Snow White with a bit of Beauty and the Beast thrown in. Albion is a sheltered young man who has just passed his eighteenth birthday and with his coming of age, he is invited to the King’s yearly party to introduce all the newly eligible young men to the King. Albion is dragged into a ploy by his brother to ensnare the Kings attention and when Albion is chosen, Rosarius is far from happy. Jasper just wants to find the one who can break his curse, but it is getting harder and harder to live with the lonely existence and dashed hopes, until Albion brings hope back into his life and it puts Albion’s life in grave danger.
Albion really has been sheltered and is very naïve about life. He has had his own secret longings and when he meets the King those longings take on a life of their own. Albion is just so trusting that you want to protect him from all the evil in the world. And Jasper, well, with Jasper you want to take all the hopelessness and loneliness away. They make a really sweet couple, and you can’t help wondering if it isn’t because he has the right blood and more because of how they feel for each other.
So, I will recommend this to those who love a fairy tale with a twist, danger, intrigue, witchcraft, erotic lovemaking and a very happy ending.