Tuesday, 30 September 2014

YAOI BOOK REVIEW: A SOLDIER'S SAGA BY D L WARNER


Title: A Soldier's Saga
Author: D.L. Warner
Cover Artists: Adriana Ferguson
Publisher: Sybaritic Press


Blurb for A Soldier's Choice:


They were soldiers. Fight or die was all they had known since they were boys. Colonel Rik Heron was on track to become the youngest General Joint Command had ever produced. But then his wild protégé, Vincent Greven was lost in a senseless battle born of the crazed ambitions of their superior officers. After two years of a hollow and empty existence, Vincent returns during a cataclysmic firefight. He is older, wiser and irresistible to Rik. While they heal from the last battle and repair old wounds, a deep bond builds between them. Friends and colleagues are not pleased about their relationship or their plans to leave the military. While the pair navigates a messy and dangerous situation, new plots are brewing that put them in the crosshairs once more.


Review:

In A Soldier's Choice,  there is the possibility that the two of them will be leaving the military, something neither their friends or family agree with, let alone agree with their choice to be lovers in an army that doesn't embrace freedom of sexuality. At the beginning we find out that Vincent has returned to Rik, but there is no explanation as to where he had gone or why he had disappeared, which is strange as for a character as sought after as he, we would want to know what had happened to him for those two years.

There isn't much in the way of explanation about Rik and Vincent's relationship before what happened during the conflict either. I know it's a yaoi novel but I would have liked to have known more about what it would be like to be an Altered. I suppose it could be one of those things that writers overlook and think maybe readers don't have an interest in it. This, the first in the series is the sort of novel that would get the interest of both male and female readers as it has its fair share of military enthusiasm crossed with emotional and heart-warming sentimentalism we women need to see in our men as long as it's not too saccharine.

Other than the obvious problem of aliens and their need to combat them, there is also the fact they can't be away from each other for very long as they have formed such a loving bond.  You could take the characters from the sci-fi story and put them in a flat or house together as they do act like a married couple most of the time. Not that I'm knocking that - I love it to bits. Reading about the two of them made me feel fuzzy inside and glad that there were three books to the series ( A Soldier's Fate being the one after this one).

Blurb for A Soldier's Destiny:

For ultimate soldiers Rik and Vincent, the battles to keep each other never end.


Colonel Rik Heron and Major Vincent Greven return from a long overdue vacation healed in body and soul and ready to take on the primary mission of their Foundation. They also have a small problem to present to their Benefactors. Simon Molinar, a centuries old being that is the likely source of their mutation, turned up at the resort. Rik and Vincent managed to overcome the scepticism of everyone – including their own staff – to convince them not to kill Molinar on the spot. They strongly sensed that he needs them and had much to tell them. Just as that is decided, General Braun announces that a rogue squad of mentally unstable washouts from the mutant program has escaped confinement in Alaska and is likely headed straight for the Foundation. Can Rik and Vincent save all of these dangerous mutants and keep their loved ones safe from harm. What will it cost their relationship to wage battles on all fronts?

Review:

In A Soldier's Destiny, Rik and Vincent have lived at a disadvantage emotionally. After being taken into the military as children due to a genetic mutation, they are further enhanced and used as powerful weapons to eliminate any enemy they are sent to deal with. Rik and Vincent and others like them are known as Altereds in this novel. Rik spent two years away from Vincent when he was swallowed up by a dimensional portal, and this among other things is what strengthened their emotional loving bond. However the pain and hurt of his loss will always affect him, and he hopes that this will never happen again during his lifetime. When Rik sees his lover again, it is during battle, when he sees his lover again, and battling against a behemoth leaves them wondering how long they can stay alive for to enjoy their love affair.


Given the nickname "Hardcase" by Rik, he knows he has softened the others heart by telling him how he felt when he wasn't around. All the pain and hurt surfaced when he saw him again and he never wanted to be away from him again. After years in the military, the organisation they had looked up to for so long has deadly plots against it and they have to try and destroy those who would break up the foundation they had sought to protect, and the people in it.


You would think that this was a standard gay male romance novel and that Rik is the dominant male in this relationship, but they both take turns in topping and submission, which is healthy and to be honest different from most novels I have read. A Soldier's Destiny is told from Rik's point of view. Readers who like the idea of possessing a handsome, muscular male may like the way this book plays with Rik's kinky tying up sessions with his lover in those moments when they have their alone time, of course. And the opposite is true of Vincent as he likes to play the dominant male as well.


Verdict: A Soldier's Saga is the sort of trilogy I would be happy to own on my Kindle, iPad or in paperback - it's as simple as this - we need yaoi trilogies like these to survive.  It is thoroughly enjoyable and leaves you warm inside.