The Ruthless Land by A.B. Endacott
Published: June 29th, 2018
Genre: High Fantasy
“Lying is not simply about telling a plausible story, it’s about being able to tell what someone will want to believe” To outsiders, the Fourth Country is an unforgiving place. Under the leadership of ruthless women, powerful families regularly wage brutal campaigns against one another to increase their land and wealth, and men live in a state of complete subjugation. Lexana, heiress to the Farwan family, is sent to the Academy, an elite institution where the daughters of powerful families learn and refine techniques to maintain and gain power. There, she finds herself attracted to Jaxen, one of the teachers who defies convention and goes about unveiled. His apparent disregard for what is expected of him leaves her both uneasy and fascinated. Then the impossible comes to pass, and disaster befalls the Farwan family. Lexa must leave the Academy to find her mother and help restore her family to power. Jaxen insists upon accompanying her, arguing that she cannot survive without his help. Lexa can’t be certain that she can trust Jaxen, but he is right; she needs his help if she is to succeed.
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“Coin and the promise of a perfectly-planned attack are all well and good, but capturing the heart of someone can get you further than you might ever have imagined.”
This book is very different from Elen-ai & Gidyon’s even though this is set in the same God Kissed Continent universe. In this story, our main character is Lexana (Lexa) Farwan. She is the heiress to the powerful Farwan family in the Fourth Country. The Fourth Country is very different than the Second Country. If you thought that country was savage then you are not ready for, as the title says, the ruthlessness of this country. Families rise to power and fall even harder. It is hard to know who to trust because everyone is out for more power, more money, and more blood. The thing about this country is that the women rule (not like in the Second Country on a throne) but, they are the leaders of their homes. They can have multiple ‘elui’ also know as slave husbands and are meant to serve the women. The men have to be veiled and those who aren’t are seen as indecent. Lexa starts off the story at an academy that will teach her how to gain and maintain power. One teacher is Jaxen, a man who walks around unveiled and teaches his students the power of seduction. Lexa finds herself drawn to him because he doesn’t follow the rules of what is expected of men. While at school, tragedy befalls Lexa’s family and she must find them to restore her family to glory. With the help of Jaxen, Lexa sets out to achieve the impossible but in a ruthless land who can you truly trust? I will SCREAM from the rooftops about this author until she is hyped up the way she deserves to be. A.B. Endacott is one of the best fantasy writers to grace the genre. This story was just as amazing as Queendom and King but a whole new story. I could not put this down. Every twist and turn had me on edge and that ending still has my heart pounding and I can’t believe she did this to me. The pacing is perfect and as always is intense and fun. I can’t wait to read more and more of her work.
“You have such deep eyes, Lexana. Anyone fortunate enough to look into them would just about fall to the bottom of your heart. You should not lower them,” he murmured.
Lexa is so different from Elen-ai but just as incredible. She is smart and kind-hearted. But make no mistake this girl is not weak. She may make mistakes and this land may be too heartless for her but she is not spinless or feeble. She does what she has to do till the very end of the book. She sets out on a journey not even knowing the fate of her family and works hard to find them. She was amazing and full of knowledge and I can’t wait to see how her journey continues as a side character in the First Country’s book. Jaxen was sexy and seductive. I loved him and his past is so tragic. He is a man who has really been used and abused. He just wants to be free and it hard for him on the journey but he helps Lexa a lot along the way. The author really makes such complex characters and I love how a few crossed over from Queendom and King. The development and the side characters are awesome as well. As always her romance never takes over a story. Yes, this romance was more prominent than the one in King but it still isn’t overbearing or insta-love. The romance is actually extremely necessary to set up the whole story all the way to the end. Lexa and Jaxen really gripped my heart and it was intense. A girl struggling with tradition and wanting this unconventional man who hates how men are treated and this terrible past and just wants to be free but wants her to. It is such a good love story that will really turn your head upside down. And people Endacott writes her sensual scenes with such class and so sexy. She gives you the illusion without making it cringy or going into all the explicit details. It is just enough.
“…The best way to seduce someone is with the truth.”
The author never fails to amaze me. She gets me so invested in these stories and all the political turmoil happening. I am transported to these countries and she always leaves me wanting more. The stories end but I need more. She gets me so interested in the history of each place but doesn’t bore me to death. Her storytelling makes all the politics and life of the people so interesting. I am never disappointed and I think those who are fantasy lovers and especially high fantasy lovers will adore these books. These stories are not lighthearted. They are filled with betrayal, seduction, lies, deceit, death, murder, vengeance, and magic. READ THESE BOOKS!!!!!!
His other hand plucked the soap from her and began to fun it across her back. “What are you doing?” She asked softly, enjoying the sensation of being pampered. His voice, when he replied, was the low, seductive tone that left shivers on her skin. “One of the many tasks of an elui is to clean his wife.”
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