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The Moonling Prince by Wendy Rathbone

Tahir is an empath and a healer. He has lived his whole life at the Onyx Temple. When the king from the Realm of the September Stars seeks his help, Tahir leaves his own world behind to answer the plea.

Arulu is the crown prince of the September Stars, but he cannot serve. For twenty years he has suffered crippling pain, the side-effect of a splinter-bomb attack from unknown origins that destroyed the Realm’s home world, Lyric Prime.

For two decades no one has been able to ease the prince’s suffering, until Tahir arrives. But nothing is ever easy. Haunted by ghosts and riddled with mistrust, Arulu is no normal patient

Can Tahir ever hope to earn Arulu’s trust?

Will Arulu survive the aftermath and grief of the healing process?

Love is the master of healing, but for Tahir and Arulu it is not an easy road.

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Kimi’s thoughts:

Wendy Rathbone has woven a complex future society where empaths are highly sought after, having had their gifts trained in order to heal. Tahir receives the urgent call from the king of the September Stars system and accepts the king’s request. The tension felt by Tahir builds and it’s no wonder- decades before an unknown enemy decimated the homeworld of that system and they withdrew behind an impenetrable force field. 

The descriptions are gorgeous, just enough futuristic details to build the setting and further the plot but without alienating the reader by having them try to keep track of the unfamiliar. If it wasn’t for the nature of the attack and Arulu’s injury, nor the dependence of the September Stars on the starship technology that they sold in trade, one ould almost think they were reading an alternative world fantasy of some description. Indeed, the story is a lovely blending of the two genres, with metaphysical truths coming into play. 

 

The relationship between Arulu and Tahir is not one occurs instantly. I quite enjoyed watching the two men circle around each other warily, while Tahir himself questions his own ethics. It was a story that immersed me thoroughly from the very first page and I will admit to reading it in one sitting and then grabbing the next book immediately after, then hoping for a third. 

Rating: 5