The Winter King (Weathermages of Mystral Series #1)

The Winter King (Weathermages of Mystral Series #1)

by C. L. Wilson

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An epic new fantasy romance from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author C. L. Wilson

After three long years of war, starkly handsome Wynter Atrialan will have his vengeance on Summerlea's king by taking one of the man's beautiful, beloved daughters as his bride. But though peace is finally at hand, Wynter's battle with the Ice Heart, the dread power he embraced to avenge his brother's death, rages on.

Khamsin Coruscate, Princess of Summerlea and summoner of Storms, has spent her life exiled to the shadows of her father's palace. Reviled by her father, marriage to Wintercraig's icy king was supposed to be a terrible punishment, but instead offers Kham her first taste of freedom—and her first taste of overwhelming passion.

As fierce, indomitable Wynter weathers even Khamsin's wildest storms, surprising her with a tenderness she never expected, Kham wants more than Wynter's passion—she yearns for his love. But the power of the Ice Heart is growing, dangerous forces are gathering, and a devastating betrayal puts Khamsin and Wynter to the ultimate test.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062018977
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 07/29/2014
Series: Weathermages of Mystral Series , #1
Pages: 608
Sales rank: 214,110
Product dimensions: 4.20(w) x 6.90(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

C. L. Wilson wrote her first story at age six, and though she took a number of long detours during her life, she never gave up her lifelong dream of being published. Many years, hundreds of false starts, and five completed novels later, she received "The Call" in October 2006 and sold her epic fantasy romance, Tairen Soul, at auction. Her debut novel spent two weeks on the USA Today bestseller list, and her subsequent novels have gone on to hit a variety of lists, including USA Today, New York Times, and Publishers Weekly. When not writing, C. L. enjoys relaxing with her husband and three children in sunny Florida and daydreaming of a world where people exercise in their sleep and chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream is a fat-burning food.

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The Winter King 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 58 reviews.
Alyssa75 More than 1 year ago
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog*** The Winter King by C.L. Wilson  Publisher: Avon Publication Date: July 29, 2014 Rating: 5 stars Source: eARC from Edelweiss ***Warning: this is an adult book, and for the eyes of mature readers*** Summary (from Goodreads): Wynter Atrialan, the Winter King, once lived in peace with his southern, Summerlander neighbors, but when the prince of Summerlea steals Wynter’s bride and murders his young brother, Wynter calls upon a dangerous Wintercraig magic called the Ice Heart and marches against Summerlea. After three bitter years of battle, a victorious Wynter arrives at Summerlea’s royal palace to issue his terms of surrender. The prince of Summerlea stole Wynter’s bride and slew Wynter’s Heir. He wants the loss replaced. The Ice Heart is consuming him. Wynter hopes holding his own child in his arms will rekindle the warmth in his heart before he becomes the monster of Wintercraig legend, the Ice King. The Summer King has three very precious daughters whom he loves dearly. Wynter will take one of them to wife. She will have one year to provide him with an Heir. If she fails, he will send her to face the mercy of the mountains and claim another princess for his wife. And so it will continue until Wynter has his Heir or the Summer King is out of daughters. The plan is perfect—except for one small detail. The Summer King has a fourth daughter. One of whom he is not so fond. And she is a fiercely passionate creature, with a temper as volatile as the forces of her weathergift, the power of storms. What I Liked: I'm just going to come right out and say it: I really don't like the cover. Yes, that has nothing to do with the content of the book itself, but if you take into account the COVER before reading the synopsis or something, please ignore it. Don't judge this book by its cover. Unless you find the cover stunning, in which case, love the heck out of it! Read this one! Yes yes yes! I read this book on Friday (July 4th), re-read it on the same day, and then re-read it again on July 5th. And July 6th. Yes, this book is nearly 600 pages. Yes, I read and re-read it in its entirety four times. Yes, I am in love with this book. HOLY CRAP. This book was made for me. Literally perfect, totally made for me. It's an epic fantasy novel (epic fantasy is my favorite), a romance novel (oh my word the romance was AMAZING!), and I loved just about everything about this book. Be prepared for me to flail around and not do this book justice at all because AHHHH, IT WAS SOOO GOOD!! Khamsin is the fourth princess of Summerlea, the disgraced daughter of the Summer King. She's a legitimate daughter, legitimate heir, but she "killed" her beloved mother, so her father hates her (it wasn't her fault though). Her sisters are known as the Seasons - Autumn, Summer, and Spring. Her brother, Falcon, stole the Winter King's future bride, as well as a really important book. When the Winter King comes to Summerlea to write peace negotiations, he takes a bride - one of the princesses. But he gets duped by the Summer King, because the Summer King gives him a daughter, but not one of the Seasons. Khamsin - Storm - becomes the Winter King's bride by deception, and while he isn't pleased about that, there is nothing he can do. But sparks more than fly between the summer princess and the Winter King, with intense power and sizzling chemistry between the two of them. So much more is at stake though, with Khamsin's brother looking for a legendary sword to defeat the Ice King. Where will Khamsin's loyalties lie? Okay, I'll be honest - at first, I thought this was going to be a love story that was really just Stockholm Syndrome at play. Yes, Khamsin married Wynter willingly, but it seemed like only because she wanted to save her sisters from the fate, and because marriage to the Winter King was most likely better than being beaten and tormented by your own father and his servants. Poor Khamsin. HOWEVER. In my honest opinion (as always, heh), I don't think this was a Stockholm Syndrome case at all. Khamsin and Wynter fall in love slowly but surely, and trust me, all 600 pages of this book is SO WORTH IT, if only to follow the romance. And there is so much more to this book than the romance! It's an epic fantasy novel. Wynter is a powerful king, in possession of the Ice Heart (which basically makes him virtually impossible to defeat, with enhanced power, but not immortal or anything). He has a kingdom and vast territories to manage, as well as Falcon and that book to find. Raising the Ice King would be seriously bad. Add on top of that a new wife and an Heir to sire within a year... this book is quite busy! This book is written in third person, alternating perspectives. I especially LOVE this, in this book. It totally WORKS. The thing is, we know that Khamsin is the innocent princess, thrust into the hold of the big, bad Winter King. So we see Wynter as this villain, the enemy king, the Wolf in a wolf's pelt (literally, this guy is from the Snow Wolf clan of Winterfolk). The Summer King is also a villain, since he beat his own daughter within an inch of her life. But I really love Wynter's perspective, because we get to see inside his mind, the "villain's" mind. He's no villain at all, once you start seeing this his way. His manner seems cruel and unfeeling, but he has reasons, he has ways. I wish I could be more specific, but I won't. So you know I really like Wynter. He's a total alpha, both physically and mentally, but I absolutely love his subtle compassion. The way he stood up for his new wife, after he had just learned that her father, her sisters, and even she deceived him. That was probably my favorite scene - the frozen hand scene, that's what I'll call it. The way he cared for her when she was sick in the carriage. When he took off his armor, despite the danger of that, so that she could ride comfortably with him. When she was completely broken, sitting in the balcony drenched in rain, completely lifeless. He's insatiable when it comes to some matters, and a total bonehead when it comes to others (you'll see, when they get to Gildenheim), but I didn't expect him to have such compassion. I honestly didn't expect to like him so much. I really do. I really like Khamsin as well. She's fiery, quick-tempered, jealous, unpredictable as her storm powers, cautious. But she's also honorable and kind. She never betrayed Wynter, never deceived him (except the marriage bit, ha), never did completely stupid, reckless things or wasn't justified in her actions. She's smart, broken, compassionate - just as he is. The two of them are such a perfect match, like moths to each other's flames, or gold and silver. Literally, opposing powers attracting, but that's not it entirely.  I already mentioned that I LOVED how the romance wasn't the only thing in this book. The fantasy is huge, and I just loved how well Wilson constructs this fantasy world. It really is so unique, despite seeming like the typical epic-fantasy-kingdoms-kings-and-queens kind of story. Wilson did a beautiful job of creating and portraying her fantasy world to readers.  I can't seem to say enough about the romance. The romance was breathtaking, in my opinion, as well as it was intense. There is a lottttt of chemistry between Wynter and Khamsin, right from the start. The physical aspect of their relationship is very big, and very crucial. It seems like sex is the only thing that draws Wynter to Khamsin and vice versa, but eventually, that just isn't it. I love this. I love how the physical aspect of their relationship is thrown out there with a crash and bang, and then the mental and emotional side is built up slowly. Usually, I'm cautious when it comes to that order of things, but it worked so well in this book. The ending was extremely fast, but not excessively so. Like, you won't get lost, but things snowball quickly. I liked the ending a lot. Wynter and Khamsin go through a lot, especially in terms of trust. Wynter's right-hand man Vallik is convinced that Khamsin is a spy for her father, right up until the ending (and honestly, he isn't to be blamed for trying to protect his obsessed king/best friend). But the ending is literally a perfect way to show Khamsin and Wynter's feelings for each other, their trust, and their relationship. Love! I hope I've at least done this book a fraction of justice. I feel so so so strongly for this book, and I'm not entirely sure that I'm expressing that into words very well. I've read/re-read this book FOUR TIMES, people! Do you know how hard that is, as a book blogger? I have so many other review books, but I was in a total book hangover because THIS BOOK WAS SO GOOD!! *cue flails* What I Did Not Like: I have nothing to say here! La la la I loved this book a lot, and yes, no book is perfect, but this book is so flipping awesome so we can pretend that it basically is! If you're put off by the cover, don't be. I dislike the cover, but I LOVE the book. If you're put off by the length, don't be. The 600 pages fly by, trust me. Would I Recommend It: YESSSSS!! If you love adult romance novels, THIS IS ONE FOR YOU! If you love historical romance novels, this is one for you! If you love fantasy novels, this is one for you! If you love all of the above, DO NOT MISS THIS BOOK FOR ANYTHING!! Come to think of it, no one who has even the slightest, remotest interest in this book should let it pass them by! Rating: 5 stars. Actually, let's make that infinite stars. This book deserves it. It's rare that my rating of a book is higher than the overall rating of the book on Goodreads. It's rare that I give a book five stars. But that is the case here! I regret nothing, because this book is so worth it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
the winter king was a page turning can't put it down awesome book. just like her tairan soul set, it brings the reader into the lives of the two main characters and hold you captive until the book is done. I would recommend this to anyone who like fantasy, sci-fi, romance, and really good battle scenes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book and didn't want it to end. It was amazing.
Sandy-thereadingcafe More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars:  4.5 stars--THE WINTER KING is the latest and long awaited fantasy storyline from author C.L. Wilson. This is the story about two kingdoms, thrown into a war by the petulance of the only son of King Verdan of Summerlea. With thoughts of eternal power, Falcon Summerlea heads towards Wintercraig in search of a mythical sword. Fast forward and both kingdoms have been at war with one another for three years because Falcon stole the Winter King’s bride.  As Summerlea continues to suffer with a perpetual winter and near starvation of the lands, The Winter King comes forward with demands-surrender to Wintercraig and his choice of one of the three  Summer King’s daughters. Little did he know that there is a fourth daughter hidden behind closed doors-a daughter of whom the Summer King is all too willing part. With her mother dead; her brother MIA and at war with the world Kham Coruscate is thrust into an unwanted marriage to secure a ceasefire between the two lands. The storyline follows Khamsin ‘Storm’ Coruscate and her integration into the Winter King’s home. Kham is a twenty year old woman with an uncontrollable weather gift of storms. Following the accidental death of her mother when Kham was only three years old, the Summer King forced his youngest daughter out of his life into a world of family heartbreak and unending fear. When the Winter King demands one of the Summer King’s daughters hand in marriage, he will quickly learn that the woman to whom he is wed, is not the woman he thought he knew. Forced into a marriage of convenience, Kham is persona non grata in the world of Wintercraig and the royal kingdom. She will become the target of assassins, poisons, death threats and fear, all because he brother has declared war on the very people with whom she must now live. Kham and Wynter are immediately drawn to one another. There is the proverbial elephant in the room-betrayal and trust-but theirs is an attraction that cannot be denied although many have tried to prove it false. Their chemistry is volatile; they want; they need but letting go will take time.  Mistaken beliefs and misunderstandings will be a constant reminder that they do come from different worlds. C.L. Wilson has the ability to pull the reader into a stunning and wondrous fantasy world of extraordinary color. The characters come to life upon the pages as C.L. weaves background and history; heroes and villains; passion and hatred into a story for the senses. From fire and ice; freezing cold to billowing heat the opposing worlds of Wintercraig and Summerlea are more than the backdrop to the story-but a part of the landscape and world upon which the story has been written.  There were times where the story got lost in some of the nuances and descriptive narration especially the continuous battles with the destructive ice creatures of lore. Our heroine Kham is, at times, too trusting and willing to accept things at face value and because of this there is the constant threat against her life. Most of the Kingdom of Wintercraig have not accepted their new queen, and the number of attempts against her life becomes a continuing theme throughout the story. THE WINTER KING is a long story. You will definitely need more than an afternoon or evening to keep up with the villainy and treachery, both upfront and behind the scenes. Friends will become enemies; trusted family will destroy the soul; and love will break the ice around The Winter King’s heart. C.L. Wilson has written an imaginative tale filled with passion, drama, heartbreak and love.
Barb-TRC More than 1 year ago
I have been waiting anxiously for C.L. Wilson’s new novel, The Winter King. I am happy to say it was a great book, which is something you have come to expect from Wilson. This is a standalone book, and not part of her fabulous Tairen Soul series. In The Winter King, Wilson has created two wonderful characters in our heroes, Wynter, The Winter King; and Khamsin (Kham), the one woman who will stand up to the King, and is as powerful as he is. Wynter, as described in the book description, was at peace with his neighbor Summerlea, until their young prince came for a visit, and took Wynter’s betrothed and killed his young brother. Revenge changed Wynter, as he embraced the terrible magic of the Ice Heart, in order to enact his vengeance against Summerlea. After having successfully won the war, he arrives at Summerlea with his terms to King Varden. Falcon, Varden’s son, has been in hiding all these years during the war, and Wynter cannot get revenge on him. Instead, he tells Varden, he wants one of his daughters as his wife, to give him a heir (which he lost at the death of his brother). If within one year, the daughter does not give him an heir, he will come back for the next daughter. Kham is King Varden’s 4th daughter, whom he despises and hides in his mansion, not allowing her to be part of the family. She is treated very badly, with only her three sisters secretly visiting her. But when he is faced with losing one of his three daughters, Varden devises a plan to secretly give Kham to Wynter as his wife. All this is early on, and what follows is a fantastic story as we follow Wynter, Kham and his army back to his home in Wintercraig. The road home is difficult, as Kham gets sick and barely survives. The chemistry between Wynter and Kham is off the wall right from the start. As the romance builds, there are so many obstacles and betrayals that threaten to destroy their budding romance. Kham grew up all her life thinking The Winter King was an evil man, who would do anything to destroy Summerlea. Wynter, despite his intense feelings for Kham, could not allow himself to totally trust her, as he knew her loyalty was questionable. But with each passing day, each obstacle, each threat, each incident, their feelings for each other intensified. I will not give spoilers, but this was such an exciting, at times intense action filled story, that had me worried about the fate of our heroes; with all the betrayals, near death situations, the many battles, that I could not put the book down until I found out what was going to happen. I loved Wynter and Kham together. They were the perfect couple, even if no one believed in them. Wynter, with the Ice Heart, was very powerful, but he knew it could also destroy him. Kham is very powerful in her own right, as we watch her learn to handle her powers, and put them to good use during the threats on her life, as well as Wynters. Kham’s nickname is Storm, which should tell you something (her sisters were named Summer, Autumn, Spring ) As much as I loved Wynter, as he was so swoonworthy; but I loved loved Kham. She suffered so badly all her life, but she was strong, independent, powerful, and when given a chance, loving. Kham is one of the best heroines I have read, and I do have some favorites. The Winter King was a fantastic magical ride in a land of war, hatred, revenge, betrayals and love. The Winter King is a must read. C.L. Wilson has done it again with a fabulous story not to be missed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This stand alone was unexpected and a delight after reading her series. Really well developed and left me hanging on for the next page to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really have enjoyed all of C. L. Wilson's books and stories. I found this to be a wonderfully fierce fantasy romance. The world building of Mystral was so descriptive I felt that the picture I built in my own mind had so many details. The sex scenes were hot and the battle scenes were bloody. I was able to lose myself for awhile and hope that the hints for other adventures result in more books in this world. This is a complete standalone that is resolved and does not leave you with the feeling you need to tear out your hair waiting for a sequel. Loved it!
WorldsCollide More than 1 year ago
An absolutely amazing, stunning, delight of a read, The Winter King was a fantastic fantasy romance. I LOVED this book! With magic, betrayals, secrets, and surprises, this book was brilliant. Loved it! Khamsin was a wonderful heroine. She was extremely strong and fiercely independent. She dealt with her father's abuse and still came out strong and determined to live happily in spite of him. She was very loyal to those she loved and, honestly, a total badass in general. I really liked her. She was an awesome character. Wynter was also great. He was very clever and definitely a force to be reckoned with. He was extremely loyal to his loved ones and to his people. And, he was also sweet and, underneath the Ice Heart, a truly kind man. He was wonderful and I totally adored him. The romance was perfect. Khamsin and Wynter were perfectly matched. Both were very strong, in magic and in will, and they met their match in each other. They were so sweet together. And, the heat between them was on fire. The chemistry was always sizzling and it led to some delightfully steamy scenes. I thought they were perfect together. The plot was fast paced and I was totally hooked the entire way through. There were twists, secrets, and betrayals that I never saw coming and it all kept me on the edge of my seat. I loved the story and the ending was perfect. The Winter King was a brilliant, wonderful, absolutely fantastic fantasy romance. From the magic, to the twists, to the lovely romance, this book was perfect. Romance lovers, this book is a must read. *I received a complimentary copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I’m so glad I was able to read this book. Such complex characters and such a fantastic story line. I can’t wait to continue reading the series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is mesmerizing. I was crying and crying at times during the read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had no expectations for this book. But it was surprisingly good. Honestly read it for mindless entertainment and instead got invested in the characters and the HISTORY OF THE LAND, the magic was so cool and well-written, I loved the battles and the politics, I can't honestly stop listing good things about it. I am so interested in this fantasy that the romance is a simple tiny part of it. It's dope. The only thing that bothered me was a typo which is more the responsibility of the editor than the author. It blipped me out of the story for a second and surprised me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you enjoy a great love story mixed in with action, magic, fantastic worlds with conflicted heroes and their nemesis, The Winter King will not disappoint! Hated that it ended!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As always an adventure worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best original fantasy/romance sories I have ever come across. Cried almost all throughout the book. Both Khasmin and Wynter have to learn to trust each other after a 3year long war between their kingdoms. I LOVE THEM SO MUCH!
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
This was good! I have heard great things about this book since its release date. I am really not sure why I waited so long to pick it up. I am glad that I listened to all of the recommendations and finally read this wonderful story. I was swept away into this world and fell in love with the characters. It was the kind of book that I didn't want to put down. I really enjoyed reading this story. Wynter, the King of Wintercraig, has just defeated the Summerlea and has come to claim a princess as part of the bargain. Khamsin is the daughter of the Summerlea King but she is not one of his treasured daughters. She is the daughter that he depises and keeps hidden away. The Summerlea King agrees to the deal and forces Khamsin into the role as bride. Wynter and Khamsin have fantastic chemistry from the start but they have a lot to learn about each other. At the start of the story there is no trust between them and they are prone to thinking the worst of each other. They are both good people and as they spend time with each other they start learning that their assumptions may not be accurate. It was really quite nice to watch this pair open up to each other. I fell in love with both of these characters and loved watching them pull each other out of their shells. They really seemed to be made for each other. Wynter must deal not only with his new bride but also with the Ice Heart which threatens his life. He has been able to control it so far but those around him question how much longer that control will last. I thought that the Ice Heart was a nice aspect of the story. It was really interesting to watch Wynter with his internal struggle. Khamsin must deal with life as an outsider in a realm where her brother is a known enemy, having sparked a war. I really felt all of Khamsin's emotions as she navigated her new world. I enjoyed the world at the center of this book. There were so many vivid details to the story that helped bring everything to life. I thought that Wynter and Khamsin both had really interesting powers that nicely complimented each other. There were a few really unique creatures to keep things very interesting. Everything came together perfectly to form a well told story. I would highly recommend this book to others. It was the perfect blend of romance and fantasy with enough action to keep the pages turning. This was a rather long book at around 600 pages but it didn't feel long. In fact, it was over all too soon. I can't wait to read the next book in this series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just re-read the book and fe ll in love all over again. Can't wait for Sea King!
GreenRecluse More than 1 year ago
C. L. Wilson is my all-time favorite romantic fantasy author, and this book does not disappoint! With fascinating world-building, interesting characters, and a plot that involves intrigue, betrayal, and the Power of True Love, The Winter King is a permanent Keeper Shelf book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book and didn't stop until I finished it. I don't know if it is a stand alone book or the beginning of a series but I can't wait for her next book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How high fantasy romance should be.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
great epic tale!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. I was captivated. It's a beautiful romance and I loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She really brings her characters to life. It had amazing plot twists and turns and their romance was one of my favorites to date. If you are looking for a well written plot driven story with well rounded characters who practically jump off the page this is the book for you!!!! Well any of her books are.