The Last Grand Master
Author: Andrew Q. Gordon
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
American release date: January 31, 2013
Format/Genre/Length: Novel/M/M Sc-Fi Fantasy Romance/344 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★
When a god deigns to personally request your assistance in a matter of some importance, is there any other answer than yes? Honorus appears before Prince Farrell to ask for his help on behalf of his sister, the goddess Lenore. Do what she asks, he instructs Farrell, and oh, by the way, you’ll also find your mate. Is that added incentive, or what?
Farrell is the Prince of Haven, but much more than that, he is the Last Grand Master, a most powerful wizard, despite his fairly tender years. Haven is a place of refuge for those who have fled before the tyranny and evil that is Meglar – emperor and wizard and all-round bad guy. Farrell has been training all his life to take on Meglar, and while he has the love of his people, he has yet to find the one special love that all people yearn for. Honorus sends a messenger in the form of the unicorn, Queen Nerti, and the adventure begins! When Farrell first meets the Muchari warrior, Miceral, he secretly wishes that the handsome man is his intended love, for he is incredibly good-looking. But such things don’t happen to little guys like him. Or do they?
The Last Grand Master is a sci-fi fantasy in the grand tradition of Anne McCaffrey, Neil Gaiman, and Terry Brooks, combined with a m/m romance that will leave you cheering for the love between the two main characters, Farrell and Miceral. Gordon has woven for us a complex world where magic is the norm, and wizards are a part of everyday life. I especially enjoy the way he explains the spells as Farrell performs them. He doesn’t simply throw them out there and say this is what happened. He makes them understandable in a realistic way—supposing these things were possible, of course. He makes it easy to believe that they are.
The story is told through Farrell’s eyes. He hasn’t had an easy life. Farrell isn’t even his real name. His family has been destroyed by the maniacal Meglar, leaving him alone in the world. It’s only natural that he wishes to prevent the evil wizard from hurting anyone else. Farrell is also a realist, and in the real world people must die. He doesn’t hesitate to destroy those that ally themselves with Meglar, and he doesn’t hesitate to throw himself into the thick of any fray.
Gordon writes with a charming and beguiling voice, and you quickly find yourself caring about Farrell, and the people he loves. The characters are well-written, and the plot is both creative and intriguing. While the love between Farrell and Miceral is quite strong, Andrew takes you up to the point where the lovemaking begins and then draws the curtain. While I enjoy explicit sex as much as the next person, I didn’t find the lack of it detracted in any way from my enjoyment of this book. The emotions are there, and that’s what counts. You can always use your imagination to fill in the blanks.
The Last Grand Master is an epic tale and one I highly recommend. The good news is that there will be more of this series, and I can’t wait to read them. Inside this book, you will find adventure, humor, romance, action, drama, sci-fi and fantasy, intricately woven into an amazingly fantastic tale.
When magic is the great equalizer, even a nerdish wizard can find true love!