Six years ago, Haidyn Mast left his home and his betrothed Anisa to follow his magical calling. Too weak to join the Arcane Guild and too ashamed to return home, he has made a life as a prostitute—to all outward appearances. In truth, he sells his mind but not his body, using magic to let his clients experience their most secret fantasies while his hands stay clean. Even the Lawman, the arbiter of justice in Reseda, is one of his clients, but Haidyn would rather not know the extent of that man’s depravity.
Though successful, Haidyn is shunned as a whore and his lack of formal training is causing his power to grow out of control. He’s ready to retire and leave the city, but when he sees his Anisa standing at Lawman’s side, he knows he must rescue her from the abusive enforcer. Risking his life and his sanity, he devises a plan, knowing that failure will mean death for him, and a lifetime of torment for her…
While this is the second book in a series it does work as a standalone read. The world intrigued me and I will have to go back to read the first in this world.
Haidyn has some magical ability but it wasn’t recognized as being strong enough for him to join the Arcane Guild. It however has been strong enough for him to create a living as a very successful prostitute as he can make people believe they are doing something that they really aren’t. He was in love with a girl from his village and betrothed to her but due to his embarrassment of not being accepted to the Guild he decides not to go home. He has been dealing with an incredibly corrupt Lawman that is getting married. When he finds out the woman is his beloved he knows he has to do something to get her away from this horrible man.
This is a very quick read and I found the world they live in to be intriguing enough for me to want to know more about the Guild and the people who are fighting against them. It was a very gritty read with violence and a small amount of romance but the main thing that drew me in was the idea of a society that has an extreme disparity between the haves and have nots. I cringed at how easily disfiguring a person was for them and also how easily they were willing to kill in support of supposed laws.
Thanks to NetGalley.com and Carina Press for letting me read this in exchange for my honest review. As always with Carina Press titles you can click the link in my sidebar to go to their site to pick this and other titles up.