Uly's Comet by Sharon Maria Bidwell

The Swithin Chronicles, Book 1

Loose Id

LGBT Sci-Fi/Fantasy (M/M; M/M/M/F)

ISBN: 978-1-59632-319-3

Reviewed by Sabella

   

 

Uly has led a harsh life that revolves around keeping starvation at bay, by stealing from the unwary and on desperate occasions whoring.  When Uly is caught stealing from a Swithin noble and led to the palace in chains – Uly fears the worst.  However, what he gets is a difficult choice of remaining, while agreeing to some restrictions, in exchange for food and shelter or going back to the hard streets.  What seems like an easy choice for Uly, in reality, is a life changing decision that alters Uly’s future in unexpected ways…

Even the the Swithin Prince, Markis Shavar, needs a break from the constant tensions of his life.  But when a solitary ramble into the city brings Markis into contact with Uly, a street urchin attempting to rob him, Marlis’ decision to take him back to the palace has a ripple effect on his life. As the undeniable affection for Uly changes Markis, Markis attempts to control and force into submission the comet’s power that he possesses bring him only pain and suffering, but as Markis begins to slowly explore other ways to guide the power at his disposal, his eyes are opened to a whole new universe and his place in it.  With the help of Ryanac, Markis’ best friend, and Uly’s innocence, Markis will try to harness the power of the comet to achieve peace – but will he destroy all those he loves and the planet besides in his quest to avoid war?

The Swithin Chronicles 1: Uly’s Comet is an amazingly intricate and fascinating fantasy book.  It involves intrigue, love, hate, passion and enough political intrigue, involving fascinatingly flawed characters, to keep you entertained and turning the pages.  Uly is a vulnerable young man that has been battered by a life filled with hardship and depravation.  Markis is a man trapped by birth and talent into a position where his “power” isolate him from all the softer emotions that smooth the hardness of life.  Ryanac is a man whose humor and cheerfulness help him keep a balance in his role of protector, confidant and friend to the Swithin Prince.  The relationships between these three men are very complex, but ultimately simple as they all go back to the desire to love and to be loved in return, unconditionally.  Uly’s Comet clearly demonstrates Ms. Bidwell’s talent to build an intricate world and society for her characters to inhabit and evolve in. While the emotional currents between Uly, Markis and Ryanac are strong and engrossing the ultimate resolution to the story is an unexpected surprise.  However, the plot during the first two thirds of the book is slow moving and at times, filled with raw emotion and confusion. But the latter third of the book moves so fast that it will leave you trying to catch your breath – in more ways than one.  The Swithin Chronicles 1: Uly’s Comet is a great fantasy tale that will leave you wanting for more!  I look forward to picking up the next book in the series.

     

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