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Saxon / Arthurian
The Du Lac Devil is the second novel in Yarde’s Du Lac series, though it largely acts as a standalone novel. It focuses on Merton du Lac, the youngest son of Lancelot. The novel opens a few years after the events of the first novel, The Du Lac Chronicles, and depicts Merton in the life of a mercenary, a soldier for hire. He has earned the reputation as a devil because of the way he fights, almost like a berserker, and because of some of the brutal things he’s had to do in his duties over the years. What people don’t realize is that he is tormented by his actions, and he did it all to keep his brother, Alden, and his kingdom of Cerdiw safe from the hands of his political enemies.
When his brother Budic’s wife dies, Merton and Alden reunite at their childhood home of Benwick Castle while paying their respects. While there, they discover that agents within the castle’s household are conspiring to overthrow Budic and take the ancestral du Lac family stronghold, and thus become King of Brittany. Merton, Alden, and Budic must work to set aside their animosity and rivalries to find who is working to usurp Budic.
Readers are given deeper insight into Merton du Lac and his life, which was a treat. Merton is my favorite of the du Lac brothers so far, so I appreciated getting to know more about him. The story itself was entertaining and held my interest throughout the novel. In fact, I had initially been given this book to review but when I realized it was the second of the series, I went out and got the first one, read it, and then came back to this one to do my review. Then I bought the third in the series as well as the novella. I genuinely am enjoying the series. It is full of action and adventure, plenty of politics and even romance. There is something in here for just about everyone.
My final conclusion: this is a very fun, Arthurian-adjacent story, and will appeal to readers with a taste for Saxon culture and politics, if you can manage to overlook the editing issues.
© Kristen McQuinn
Pre-publication copy was reviewed – errors were found, which we believe have been corrected
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