In an original world reminiscent of Edwardian England in the shadow of a World War, cabals of noble families use their unique magical gifts to control the fates of nations, while one young man seeks only to live a life of his own. Magic marked Miles Singer for suffering the day he was born, doomed either to be enslaved to his family's interest or to be committed to a witches' asylum. He went to war to escape his destiny and came home a different man, but he couldn't leave his past behind. The war between Aeland and Laneer leaves men changed, strangers to their friends and family, but even after faking his own death and reinventing himself as a doctor at a cash-strapped veterans' hospital, Miles can't hide what he truly is. When a fatally poisoned patient exposes Miles' healing gift and his witchmark, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient's murder. To find the truth he'll need to rely on the family he despises, and on the kindness of the most gorgeous man he's ever seen.
I did not know it was categorized under LGBT when I started reading it, so the relationship between Miles and Tristan was a surprise.
There was also very little humour or wit - which I felt was lacking.
Nevertheless, I must admit this is a gripping tale and I look forward to the next installment.
The world-building is deep and perfectly paced. This is a world both familiar and strange, and that freshness made it a source of constant fascination. Plus, the characters are fantastic. As someone who loves healer characters, and has included them in numerous of my own books, that angle particularly appealed to me. This book incorporates inclusiveness in a gentle, natural way, and the slowly-building romance between the two male leads feels genuine. No insta-love here. The issue of consent and power in the relationship is especially well-handled.
I'm glad this is the first book in the series. This a world with people I would love to spend more time with.