Rating: 4.5 stars
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Yüuzuki Oren is the top fighter in the Lyling Fighting House. He is undefeated. The crowd loves that he beats opponent after opponent, but the bets aren’t as high now with a sure thing and as the crowd wants to see more blood, the stakes get raised. His next fight is one that is arranged to be his last fight or his last day—permanently. Yüu is resigned to his fate, yet he is distraught at leaving behind the man he loves, healer Haiatto Ekana.
Haiatto comes from a long line of Mages, but much to the disgrace of his entire family, Haiatto is only a Spark. He cannot conjure his own magic, but can process and shape Magic from a donor. Haiatto has long been the healer for the fighters and his relationship with Yüu has been a closely guarded secret. His life will mean nothing without Yüu and he will go to great lengths to protect the man he loves and secure their future.
Don’t Fight the Spark starts a new series within Kasia Bacon’s Order Universe, but also crosses over with previous books. The author recommends reading The Poison Within and A Late Bite to Eat before reading this and I would agree. I also found it helpful to be familiar with this world in general and see how these characters fit in. The author also states that she enjoys writing these books, “…in the manner that resembles revealing a new piece of a puzzle with every release.” And, that would explain somewhat of why the books in this world seem to move around in regard to characters and place.
This book is a little bit longer than some of the others and Bacon has the ability to pull me completely into this world from the first word. She is able to pack a full story into a shorter amount of space and each scene, each sentence, is handled with great care. We get caught up on the background of both men quickly and fully with a few well-crafted sentences and learn how their love story started
It’s never precisely revealed why the men’s relationship is secret, but they linger over every moment they get to spend together. Although Yüu was the winner in his latest fight, he is brought to Haiatto bloody and beaten and his injuries show how the fights are escalating and how the next fight will spell certain death for Yüu. The remainder of the book shows the enduring love the men have for each other and lengths, as well as the sacrifices, that Haiatto will go to in order to secure the safety of the man he loves.
Everything works in this story, from the pacing, to the tension, to the intrigue of all the characters and the world they inhabit, as well as the title itself. This is a fantastic fantasy series that never fails to deliver and always leaves me wanting more. While I do wish each installment was a little longer, I now look forward to once again spending more time in this world.
Note: There are several words and characters names in this book that use special characters that we were not able to reproduce in web format on the blog. We have changed them to the letters that most closely approximate those characters for the purposes of the review.