REVIEW: A Tangled Legacy and A Noble Cause by Mickie B. Ashling

The Official Description: 

Book 1 of the Legacy series: A Tangled Legacy – Prince Colin of Sendorra would have been the spare instead of the heir if fate hadn’t intervened. Like his father and forefathers, Colin is expected to marry and father a child or his principality reverts to Spain at the time of his death. Filling the royal nursery with healthy babies seems easy enough until Princess Charlotte—his childhood friend and intended bride—breaks off their engagement.

Nobel Prize winner—and powerful gray witch—Alain de Gris isn’t looking for love. Science and research have taken center stage for years until he walks into a club and lays eyes on Colin, thirteen years his junior.

Bisexual by nature, Colin seeks to avoid another engagement repeat by shying away from a same-sex relationship. There are no acceptable alternatives to provide legitimate offspring if he follows his heart.

But Colin can’t stay away from Alain and the witch finds him irresistible. Ignoring the absolutes isn’t easy when a legacy is in jeopardy. And while magic may offer a solution, it could also create more problems.

Book 2 of the Legacy Series: A Noble Cause – Having achieved his heart’s desire at a high price, Prince Colin of Sendorra and his fiancé, Nobel Prize winner Alain de Gris, find themselves at the epicenter of a twisted plot. Colin’s cousin, Drake Bradford, and his grandmother Maura, the high priestess of the Bradford Coven, have conspired for years to bring down the royal family.

Resembling his cousin in features and coloring, Drake, the soulless rat, has been using their similarities—and black magic—to his advantage. Princess Charlotte, Colin’s ex-girlfriend, is unwittingly drawn into the feud, blissfully unaware she’s been sleeping with an impostor.

In this anticipated sequel to A Tangled Legacy, Colin and Alain, along with their fearless group of witches, ghosts, and familiars, embark on a convoluted journey to save the people they love and ensure the royal succession.

Just the facts: M/M supernatural romance, bisexual main character, intersex main character, intersex supporting character, characters with magical powers, books 1&2 or series, male pregnancy, family feuding!

  • This series is a magical smack-down between two powerful families. A Prince must fulfill his role as heir in spite of the fact that it may lead him from the man he loves.

My thoughts bit: Book 1 of the Legacy series: A Tangled Legacy – The first book introduces the reader to Colin… he’s young, stubborn, exploring his sexuality and he’s also Prince Colin of Sendorra. His parents, Prince Sebastian and Duke Errol of Maitland have raised him to be the Heir. The problem is that Colin knows his twin, Andrew should have been the heir. Had Andrew survived their birth, Colin’s life would have been very different.

Colin is a wonderful character. As much as he is fighting against his destiny… he’s also trying to embrace change. He has recently split from his fiance and misses her. But, he’s pondering his sexuality and runs into Alain at a nightclub. He’s rescued from an embarrassing drunk encounter by his security detail but finds his thoughts lingering on Alain. What Colin doesn’t know about Alain is that he’s a powerful grey witch. What Alain doesn’t know about Colin is that he too has magic in his blood. I’m sure you can see how this will be delightfully tricky.

I loved the way Colin and Alain’s relationship progressed. There’s a thirteen year age gap between them, but it many ways it’s irrelevant. They find commonality in their backgrounds, both born into a potential role they have conflicted feelings about. They become lovers quickly, and the speed didn’t bother me. The characterization of Colin read truthfully to me as though he was raised in a type of isolation. His expectations of life were influenced by the way he was raised. He’s been sheltered by his two fathers and hasn’t lived the life of an average young man.

Alain is intriguing. He’s a skilled witch and his many talents are slowly revealed throughout the first book in this series. I have a feeling more will be revealed in the new installment.

When a cousin of Colin’s is engaged to begin tutoring him in magic, things get much more complicated. Drake resembles Colin and agrees to take his place so Colin and Alain can slip away undetected for a holiday. While Colin is away Drake gets up to all kinds of foul deeds AS Colin!

I loved the twisty intrigue in the first book – not all of which I’m willing to give away! The mystery of it all unrolls slowly and I enjoyed the pacing! There’s longstanding bad blood between the two families and it makes for some interesting plot twists!

Book 2 of the Legacy series: A Noble Cause – The second book begins with the mess that Colin and Alain were dealing with at the end of the first book! Charlie… poor Charlie is in the clutches of the fake Colin, Drake… and pregnant. Andrew, Colin’s deceased twin and familiar is coming into his own and learning the boundaries of his own magic and influence on the living.

Drake is still manipulating the situation and Ashling has created a wonderful villain because I certainly detest him! The battle between Colin and Drake is in full swing in the second novel in this series. REMINDER: spoilers follow! 

Princess Charlie is pregnant…but it’s revealed early in the second book that the real Colin is the father. This reveal unleashes all kinds of new problems. Alain finds himself in the unfamiliar position of having no control over the situation. His position as Colin’s fiance is on shaky ground and he’s uncertain of the correct path to take.

As usual, I find myself not wanting to ruin the plot details for any potential reader. Suffice it to say that Charlie’s pregnancy is troubling and endangered and there are only so many alternatives!

For his part, Colin is growing into his role as both a practitioner of magic and heir to the throne. I love the growth of his character in this book. When reading this series from the beginning, the progression of Colin from young and questioning to fierce and determined is clear. He’s a well-written, multi-faceted character.

The second book certainly amps up the violence and gore. This one read more like a borderline horror novel than a romance! So, if blood and evil and violence aren’t your thing, this may not be the read for you.

Loved this series!

The warnings bit: Please be aware, I’m by no means an expert on what may or may not have the potential to disturb people. I simply list things that I think a reader might want to be aware of. In book one: (SPOILERS) mentions of magical murder, mentions of family members dying in the past, a brief description of a difficult birth, mentions of a twin who passed away at birth, supporting character death, magical assault, supporting character death, attempted murder of the main character, male character pregnancy. In book two: the prior warnings apply. Sexual assault, kidnapping, appearance shaming, physical assault, magical assault, high-risk pregnancy, attempt to cause termination of pregnancy, murder, extremely violent and gory execution, death of an animal.

Readalikes: Other stories that are similar or give the same feel.

I received ARCs of A Tangled Legacy and A Noble Cause by Mickie B. Ashling from NineStar Press via NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.

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