In a dark world where magic is illegal and elves are enslaved a young elven sorceress runs for her life from the house of her evil Keeper. Pursued by his men and the corrupt Order of Witch-Hunters she must find sanctuary and confront her fears. As the slavers roll across the lands stealing elves from what remains of their ancestral home the Witch-Hunters turn a blind eye to the tragedy and a story of power, love and a terrible revenge unfolds.
An adult dark fantasy/fantasy romance adventure. 18+ rating - contains adult themes including scenes of a sexual nature.
About the Author
A. L. Butcher is the British author of the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles fantasy series, and several short stories in the fantasy and fantasy romance genres. She is an avid reader and creator of worlds, a poet and a dreamer. When she is grounded in the real world she likes science, natural history, history and monkeys. Her work has been described as ‘dark and gritty’ and her poetry as evocative.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Warning: This book is 18+, contains graphic sex and violence and would be considered a trigger book (rape). I’ve been a fan of the fantasy genre since I was a wee tot and I can say without reservation that this is one of the most original dark fantasy romance books I’ve ever read. Blending fantasy with romance is difficult, especially to hard-core fantasy readers, but Butcher pulls it off with aplomb. Dii is an elven mage and a sex slave. She’s abused, raped and more despicable things I won’t get into. She somehow escapes from her master and thinks she’s free. But between the Witch Hunters, her master’s family and other sinister forces, she’s on the run and in need of help. But when her path collides with Archos, a lord who’s against the brutal enslavement of elves, she starts to realize that the world is not 100% evil. There are good people in the world, willing to help her. Will those hunting her succeed in capturing her or will she finally be free? Don’t be fooled into thinking that this is a fluff piece where it’s all about the romance and sex. This is a deep, thought-provoking story with intriguing characters, plenty of action and a strong, independent female heroine seeking purpose in life. The main themes of slavery, violence and sex used as a weapon of power are well-laid out yet there’s an underlying theme of what it means to be free weaving throughout as well. I found the sexual violence to be a little too excessive for my taste, though that’s just my opinion. I applaud Butcher for her world-building, crafting memorable archetype characters that grow as the plot progresses as well as a love story. Yes, it’s a dark tale yet it sticks with you long after you are finished reading. If you’re looking for a dark fantasy that’s not only original but sensual too, pick up this book! I’m looking forward to reading the next in the series. Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I'd review it. My Rating: 4 stars
Sex and Sorcery: The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles is a unique mash-up of erotic and fantasy fiction. One reason I read this was to lure me out of my comfort zone of Sword & Sorcery, and this was a fun route to take. If one were to take a typical dark fantasy novel with elves & grand battles, and replace all the warfare with steamy sex scenes, then you would get this book. In fact, this book has no real battle scenes with substantial duels or military tactics on display. This book may define a new sub-genre: "Sex and Sorcery." The closes thing I have ever read to this would be Brian McNaughton's The Throne of Bones, which has copious amounts of ghoul sex (~zombie sex). "Throne" was not stimulating as much as it was horrific & weird. The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles likely reflects more traditional romance novels. The book's primary conflict regards the mistreatment of elven women, which are subjugated to rape and slavery by humans. A human magician who sympathizes becomes the savior of many elves. What can be jarring (to a "virgin" erotic fiction reader at least) is the willingness of the victimized women to satisfy their savior with the same carnal tricks the bad humans desire. The good human is also older than the elf he saves/falls-in-love-with; this coupling inflamed two-decades of sexual harassment training "no-no's" I have received by various employers. I eventually forgave this discomfort since this was (a) a fantasy book and (b) the human was not being deceptive as an influential mentor. There were hints that love-making may empower sorcery, but the connection was not explicit. This is just the beginning of a series, and I would welcome the notion of the sexual energy fueling magic being developed more. A small quibble: the author's voice strangely sneaks into all of the dialogue (across characters). They all...pause as they...consider a synonym...or...recast their words. In all, an entertaining read. Not recommended for young adults due to content; not recommend for those seeking bloody battles. This is recommended for fantasy readers who desire some...spice in their reading.