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At the conclusion of the first book in this series, Silver Fire, the evil mage Narik set Theran had escaped the punishment of the Council of Mages. Defeated by Prince Jareth of Hearthome and his soul mate Princess Mirelle of Earth, Narik seeks the missing parts of the Book of Tocson, a book of magic that will give him untold power. The Book was separated into three parts, and each part was hidden apart from the others. Narik dare not go to Hearthome for fear of recapture, he continues to work his evil by his mind-control of accomplices on the planet.
Jareth and Mirelle know that Narik is still a danger. In order to keep him from getting all the parts of the Book, Jareth sends his brother Prince Pentar on a Quest for the second part. Because this part of the Book is hidden in the kingdom of Tarol, Princess Rayne, the heiress of that country, is sent on the Quest with him. Along with the flying akosai Tran and Rosta, and with the help of the Jakosai people of the Hinterlands, and Rayne’s canine friend Fel, the Prince and Princess undertake the long and arduous trek. In the course of the journey, much danger ensues and many mysteries are solved. Throughout the story runs the story of Pentar and Rayne’s love for each other; will love be enough to protect them along the way?
The plot of this story is the classic Quest of the Arthurian legends. The ruler orders two knights (Pentar and Rayne) to go find a holy relic to protect the kingdom. Along the way, the knights meet both friends, who join their party on the Quest, and enemies, who try to stop them in their Quest. They have many adventures, see many unusual sights, and discover many hidden secrets on their journey. In addition, like an Arthurian Quest, there is not only a material goal – the Book of Tocson – but there is also a spiritual goal – in this case the love of a soul mate. As the reader can believe, the plot is very complex, and you have to pay attention to keep every character straight. It would definitely help to have read Silver Fire first, because there are many details that are left unexplained in Amber Inferno. Because of this, it took me a while to get into the story, as I was busy figuring out what an akosai was, and what a Jakosai was, etc. However, the story goes along at a fast clip, and the reader will not be bored with the adventures depicted therein.
Unlike the Arthurian chronicles, however, this story is definitely erotica! Hearthome is powered by lanbeth, a magical substance created when soul mates make love. Hearthome needs all the lanbeth the various soul mates can provide – and, boy, do they really work at it! There are many scenes of explicit male/female sex, along with some of implied male/male sex, within various exclusive couples. There is also quite a bit of violence, including assault, murder, and what is essentially a male on male rape scene. I suppose that in order for us to appreciate pure goodness, we must see pure evil at work. All in all, I found this story very interesting, and enjoyed it as a fantasy of good and evil.
Reviewed by: Jean