Star of the Morning by Lynn Kurland

Star of the Morning by Lynn Kurland is one of those books that I never would have discovered if my fellow book bloggers didn’t post reviews of it online. I’ve seen Lynn Kurland’s books in local bookstores but mostly in the romance section and I believe she writes historical romances that involve time travel. I was thrilled to find out that she has her own romantic fantasy series and of course, I was willing to give it a try. I’m a huge fan of epic fantasy and sword-wielding heroines.

Here’s the summary from Lynn Kurland’s website:

Darkness covers the north, since the black mage has begun his assault on the kingdom of Neroche. Legend has it that only the two magical swords held by Neroche’s king can defeat the mage. Now the fate of the Nine Kingdoms rests in the hands of a woman destined to wield one of those blades… In this land of dragons and mages, warrior maids and magical swords, nothing is as it seems. And Morgan will find that the magic in her blood brings her troubles she cannot face with a sword – and a love more powerful than she has ever imagined.

Morgan is a skilled mercenary who hates anything magic-related. When she’s tasked by a former guardian to deliver a dagger brimming with magic to the King of Neroche, she has no choice but to swallow her distaste and accomplish the task as soon as she can. She’s aided in her quest by fellow mercenaries and a handsome but arrogant man named Adhemar and his equally handsome but more subdued brother, Miach. Along the way, Morgan learns more about herself as she’s plagued by dreams and nightmares that she doesn’t understand. Poor Morgan, doesn’t trust magic and yet during her travels, she has to deal with it more and more.

I had high expectations for this book because of all the positive reviews and I’ve been on a fantasy kick lately but Star of the Morning ended up just okay for me. As always, I don’t like giving lukewarm reviews but I really can’t help how I feel, you know? I’m not exactly sure why I didn’t enjoy reading this as much as I expected because I really liked Morgan and Miach as characters and although Adhemar was annoying, it never went over the top. I feel like Morgan’s quest took on longer than it should and the ending seemed abrupt as a result. Maybe I should have been prepared for an incomplete story and I should have planned to read the books in the Nine Kingdoms series one right after the other to better appreciate the world more. It did have its moments – the writing is very accessible, there were some amusing situations, the characters had depth and the romance was well-developed. I just feel like the worldbuilding wasn’t as strong as I would’ve liked in a fantasy novel. Still, I will probably pick up the next books in the series because I’m curious what happens next to Morgan. I’m just not really excited to read the rest of the books. If you’re a romantic fantasy fan, you should give this a try and let me know what you think. Who knows, you might like it a lot more that I did.

Other reviews: (manually generated)
See Michelle Read
Angieville
Book Harbinger
Janicu’s Book Blog

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13 thoughts on “Star of the Morning by Lynn Kurland

  1. I’m sorry this didn’t work for you. It’s definitely more of a fantastic romance in the sense that the focus is on the romance and not the fantasy. It seems like I may have mentioned this in one of my reviews of the three books. You’re right – you definitely don’t read it for the world building. The ending is quite unresolved which can work against this book too.

    • I was actually looking forward to the romance since I always enjoy those in the fantasy books that I read. I don’t know why this didn’t work out for me as a whole, maybe I was just expecting too much. Looks like you, Angie and Michelle all liked it a lot more than I did. It seems like Janice and I had a similar reaction based on her review.

  2. It’s been a while since I read this one. I vaguely remember finding it mildly amusing but it wasn’t quite a keeper for me. But I’ve seen a lot of love for it lately which does make me consider if I should keep reading the series.

  3. I can see why you’d be frustrated with this one. The action is extremely slow building – which actually might be a good reason to stay away from the MAGE”S DAUGHTER for a bit since I felt that one moved at snails pace, even though I ultimately enjoyed it. Maybe at a different time you’d enjoy the books more?

    • Wow, the second book is even slower than this one? I know, maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood when I read this. I feel bad that I didn’t enjoy it as much as you, Angie and Holly did. 😦

  4. I liked this better than C.L. Wilson’s Tairen Soul series though. Now that was one sloooooow series. Not to mention the huuuuuuuge angst factor as well.

    • Hey Kim, I think that one is in a slightly different subgenre because it’s paranormal romance, right? I feel like there’s less romance in this series.

      • Nope, it was being marketed as fantasy romance. I think it even said so on the spine. The concept of Tairens was intriguing, but in the end all of the homages to Robert Jordan’s WoT series, not to mention the annoying heroine just did it in for me.

      • Really? I thought it was paranormal romance because that series is a lot smexier than this one. I remember reading the first book in the series but was disappointed that the same pair was going to be featured in all of the books.

      • Oh yeah, as for the smexiness factor, well, Lynn Kurland is known for her squeaky clean romances. She never goes beyond light kissing in any of her newer books. I think the only book of hers that I’ve read that actually had a bed scene was A Dance Through Time, and that was published way back in 1996 or 1997.

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