After training for the past several years to become consort to the High King, Prince Allen is blatantly rejected and turned away from his first meeting with his betrothed. Embarrassed and incensed, the prince goes about his duties as normal, awaiting the time when the High King will make the final decision to send him back to his mother, a queen of her own kingdom. In the meantime, Prince Allen makes himself a valuable asset to both the working class and the High King’s brothers-in-law when he freely offers his talent as a silver tongue, a master of many languages, to settle disputes, hear the last words of a dying man, and even interrogate a band of murderers—all against the high King’s will. And still the High King seems to despise him. So when he’s had enough, Allen sets about to prove himself. If he won’t be able to take up the position he was once vetted for, at least he can help the mercenaries led by Rene, the High King’s brother-in-law, although he chooses not to send word to the High King.
High King Sarrica realizes his mistake with Prince Allen too late. At first, Sarrica thought he needed a warrior to stand by his side, but as the stubborn prince wandered his halls and peace seemed to follow, Sarrica began to see the light. Sarrica’s problem is that he couldn’t seem to say or do the right thing, always fouling up his every meeting with Allen by offending or insulting him. Then Allen leaves and it’s too late because where Allen has gone, Sarrica has no chance of following and changing things between them.
While the Prince is gone, a number of mysteries pop up around the palace, all centering around the murder that pushed Allen away. Sarrica is forced to deal with squabbling nobles and bickering guards, and on top of that he still has to deal with his remaining brothers-in-law who never fail to remind him what an idiot he was for pushing Allen away. In the meanwhile, Allen discovers a traitor in their midst and sends his protection detail to tell the High King, which lands him and Rene captured, and the rest of their company dead. When the message reaches the palace, it’s up to Sarrica to save the day, but afterwards, he has a relationship to heal.
You guys know my love for this author, right? I mean, the words she puts on paper sing to me and touch me deep. I love them. And this book may be my favorite of all. (I know, I think I say that with all of them, but this one might be it!) The High King’s Golden Tongue by Megan Derr is exciting and beautiful and absolutely fantastic from beginning to end. Everything about this book held my attention. The detail of the world, the characters, the action—everything. This book is everything.
First, Prince Allen and Sarrica gave me all the feels. I adore this relationship because when I say it’s not perfect, you can pretty much bank on it being a train wreck from the beginning. Allen can’t do anything right in Sarrica’s eyes and Sarrica is pretty much an arrogant brute of a sexy man to Allen. All Allen wants is to prove himself so he literally takes on every task that walks by him, not so he’ll be noticed necessarily, but so he’ll have a purpose. The kingdom loves him. The only one blind to that is Sarrica—until he’s too late to do anything about it.
I love Sarrica because I love imperfect heroes and this guy is just that. Broken and missing the husband who died on the frontlines, Sarrica just wants someone strong enough to stand by his side and he obviously doesn’t think Allen fits the bill so he pushes and pushes, maybe hoping Allen will give up and run away with his tail between his legs. But he doesn’t. It turns out that these little battles are what make Sarrica and Allen so strong. I love that their relationship isn’t easy, that they have to work and fight for it. And in the end, they do both fight for it.
Lesto and Rene, the brothers to Sarrica’s late husband, are as close as siblings to Sarrica and treat him as if they were blood related. I am absolutely head over heels for these guys for the fact that they don’t back down when it comes to the High King and that they fight for Allen even when Sarrica is blind to him. Not only that, they’re hilarious and in need of love so badly. I adored Rene’s side story and his romance, but I hope for more. And I definitely cannot wait for Lesto’s story.
This world is a work of art, as is the story. A world centered on language and misunderstandings, wars and betrayals, every new discovery is a turn in a direction no one expects. I was addicted to this story, to the lives of each of the characters (even the secondary cast), and to the love that eventually blooms between Allen and Sarrica.
This story is an epic ride of adventure, stubbornness, brattiness, and betrayal. And it’s not over. Yes this book ended perfectly, but there are pirates to delve into and mysteries yet to solve. I cannot wait to see what comes next for the kingdom of Harken and for this family. I highly, highly recommend The High King’s Golden Tongue by Megan Derr.