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Too Many Fairy Princes
 
 

Too Many Fairy Princes [Kindle Edition]

Alex Beecroft
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Happily ever after doesn’t always come quietly. Sometimes it puts up a fight.

Kjartan’s family is royally dysfunctional. He’d prefer to ignore the lot of them, but can’t since his father has set him and his brothers on a quest to win a throne Kjartan doesn’t even want. Worse, his younger brother resorts to murder and forces Kjartan to teleport—without looking where he’s going.

Art gallery worker Joel Wilson’s day has gone from hopeless, to hopeful, then straight to hell. One minute he’s sure his boss has found a way to save the floundering business, the next he’s scrambling to sell everything to pay off a loan shark. If anyone needs a fairy godmother right now, it’s Joel. What he gets is a fugitive elven prince in a trash bin.

They’ll both have to make the best of it, because fairy tales run roughshod over reluctant heroes. Particularly when there aren’t enough happy endings to go around.

Warning: This sweet romance contains a starving artist trying to scrape together a living, extreme sibling rivalry, royalty behaving outrageously, and elves being unreasonably beautiful, grotesque or deadly.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 340 KB
  • Print Length: 174 pages
  • Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (5 Nov 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00D89OG9G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #227,837 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too Many Fairy Princes 31 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase
Beecroft turns the conventional fairy story trope (which prince will inherit the kingdom?) into a bittersweet urban fantasy with a reasonably happy though unconventional ending. The fae were strange and breathtaking, beautiful and dangerous. Joel was a good representative of humanity, and his involvement with his prince was by turn romantic, worrying, amusing and potentially deadly. I loved the story and the characters and thought the writing was excellent. Definitely worthy of five stars!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Too many fairy princes 16 Nov 2013
By Clare O'Beara TOP 1000 REVIEWER
In this fantasy tale of two cultures, a struggling young artist in London meets an eleven prince. In the cavern where an ensorcelled husk holds the remnants of the old king, this being sets his four sons to compete for his throne. The youngest is traditionally the winner; one of the princes arranges for the youngest brother to die. Clearly the gloves are off and the remaining brothers can trust nobody. Prince Kjartan is horrified by the death, and next has to battle off a party of wraiths... he magically travels to the world of men, which is full of painful iron.

Young Joel is cycling around London trying to find the resources to pay off a loan and save his job. The art gallery owner was hit by a car and is in hospital, so it's up to him as the sole employee. Joel got taken for a ride once before, when a boyfriend skipped the country with his savings. He's first got to defend himself against the loan shark's enforcers, then stumbles across an elf lying unconscious in rubbish bins. Kjartan is injured, and when he comes around, insists Joel be his servant. Can this day get any more bizarre?

This has to be one of the most unusual stories I've read in some time, with the unpleasantness of the elf kingdom contrasted with the plain honesty and artistry of Joel, and street violence topped by a visit to Buckingham Palace. Her Majesty proves a most excellent heroine, and a welcome guest in the tale.
If you've wondered how it would feel to battle a swarm of goblins, or to fall in love with a proud elfish prince, give this a try. It's funny and reckless, and it's always entertaining. It's for Roald Dahl fans who have grown up. While there's a gay romance, the alternate sexuality content is a small part of the story and I consider it could be read by teenagers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well developed characters 14 Nov 2013
The great strength of Beecroft's writing lies in her ability to evoke strange settings and to make her characters, both human and elf feel real.

The visual memory that sticks with me from this book is of an armoured steampunk octopus attacking a city wall! However, it's the characters that make any story really work, and Kjartan and Joel both have depth to them. Joel has been sold out by people he trusted in the past and is uncertain whether he can take the risk of trusting again.
Kjartan is rich and beautiful (I love the descriptions of him - he feels like an elf should be: handsome, aloof and magical), but his society is a cold, sterile one.

Kjartan isn't perfect. His principles and morals come from a different culture, but that's actually part of what makes the story believable. Joel can accept Kjartan, because he's honest about what he is. Jole needs honesty, and Kjartan needs love.

The other thing I like about Beecroft's work is the lack of explicit sex. When her characters get into bed together, it really means something.

My only small quibble is that Queen Elizabeth in this story feels rather like a character in a sitcom. When all the other characters have real depth, the Queen rather stands out by contrast (though I appreciate that it's a bit difficult to be realistic in this area).

Overall, this is definitely a story I'd recommend.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastical fun 6 Nov 2013
Verified Purchase
Alex Beecroft has long been auto-buy author for me, and I was particularly excited to hear that she was going to be writing fantasy again. I loved the Under The Hill books and once I had seen the cover for this book I anticipated another treat.
The anticipation was rewarded by a bubbly confection of a story that careers from joyous parody of the high fantasy genre to romance and back via moments of grief, pathos and horror.
A terrific read, well worth staying up large for.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Too many fairy princes 16 Nov 2013
By Clare O'Beara - Published on Amazon.com
In this fantasy tale of two cultures, a struggling young artist in London meets an eleven prince. In the cavern where an ensorcelled husk holds the remnants of the old king, this being sets his four sons to compete for his throne. The youngest is traditionally the winner; one of the princes arranges for the youngest brother to die. Clearly the gloves are off and the remaining brothers can trust nobody. Prince Kjartan is horrified by the death, and next has to battle off a party of wraiths... he magically travels to the world of men, which is full of painful iron.

Young Joel is cycling around London trying to find the resources to pay off a loan and save his job. The art gallery owner was hit by a car and is in hospital, so it's up to him as the sole employee. Joel got taken for a ride once before, when a boyfriend skipped the country with his savings. He's first got to defend himself against the loan shark's enforcers, then stumbles across an elf lying unconscious in rubbish bins. Kjartan is injured, and when he comes around, insists Joel be his servant. Can this day get any more bizarre?

This has to be one of the most unusual stories I've read in some time, with the unpleasantness of the elf kingdom contrasted with the plain honesty and artistry of Joel, and street violence topped by a visit to Buckingham Palace. Her Majesty proves a most excellent heroine, and a welcome guest in the tale.
If you've wondered how it would feel to battle a swarm of goblins, or to fall in love with a proud elfish prince, give this a try. It's funny and reckless, and it's always entertaining. It's for Roald Dahl fans who have grown up. While there's a gay romance, the alternate sexuality content is a small part of the story and I consider it could be read by teenagers.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heartfelt and beautifully written - not the farce the title suggests. 16 Nov 2013
By Ulysses Dietz - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The title of Alex Beecroft's book, "Too Many Fairy Princes," doesn't really quite do it justice.

It is too elegant, too delicately wrought, its emotions too genuinely felt, to be classed as a farce, which is what I think the title suggests. Maybe the author, who is a really wonderful writer, thought it would help sell it.

To be truthful, there is farce here, but it is more like a surreal comedy of manners, because the worlds of Kjartan and Joel are so different, their worldviews so completely alien to each other (at first), that it cannot help but make you laugh. But what struck me in reading this book was the wonderful sense of observation - the careful way the author makes us feel we are seeing something actually happen - the strangeness of Joe's discovery of a clearly magical creature right out of Tolkien collapsed behind his trash bins. The strangeness that Kjarten feels while experiencing reactions to this bumbling, awkward human that shouldn't even exist according to his training and his station.

Beecroft offers some of the most beautifully crafted narrative in the m/m genre, bringing in the paranormal/magical aspects of the tale as if she was an anthropologist studying an isolated tribe (which, of course, she is). And she doesn't make everything neat and tidy - we get the world of elves as it is, a mixture opulence and hatefulness. She lets us see Joel through Kjartan's eyes, and vice versa, and lets us feel what they feel with a gentle touch that traps us in the ultimate, crystalline truth of this fairy tale - that love is transformative, powerful, destructive, and potentially redemptive.

And, beyond all belief, HM Queen Elizabeth II appears, and it totally makes sense. Read it, you'll see.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun with elves 7 Nov 2013
By Sirius - Published on Amazon.com
REVIEW WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED AT DEAR AUTHOR WHERE I RECEIVED THE BOOK AS FREE REVIEWING COPY

Dear Alex Beecroft,

Based on the blurb this story seemed to be inspired by fairy tales, and I love fairy tales
and their retellings for adults, so of course I wanted to review this book.

As the blurb indicates, Joel and Kjairtan meet in Joel’s world (“our” world). Kjairtan
(Kai) has teleported himself there in order to avoid being killed by his brother, and Joel is
having troubles of his own. His boss was supposedly hit by a car, but he then disappeared
with a bagful of money. Joel thought the money was going to be used to save the gallery
he works in, but some mobsters have other ideas, expecting it as repayment for a loan
they are owed. Now the mobsters are after Joel and he has his hands full trying to find the
money. In the midst of this, at a most fortunate (or unfortunate, depending on how you
look at it) moment, Kai shows up.

The hilarity of both of them assessing each other and trying to adjust their assessments
was amusing, as it always is when beings from the different worlds learn about each
other. Kai knows that humans exist, but he has a lot of preconceptions about them. Joel
knows nothing about elves’ existence, but apparently he’s a Tolkien fan, so in no time at
all he comes to accept that Tolkien elves exist in reality. As an aside, I was a little
annoyed at first because I wanted the writer to bring her own touch and come up with
more original characterization of elves than just telling me that Joel sees a creature from
Tolkien’s worlds come alive. My annoyance soon disappeared , though, because I
realized that one – Joel may not *know* any other elves and has nothing to compare his
impression but with Tolkien and two – the author showed me an interesting and not quite
Tolkien-like characterization of her elves.
I thought their interactions were beautiful.

“He picked up a pectoral pendant the size of his fist, on which a solitary humanoid figure was battling what looked like Cthulu. It was light and soft in his hand, molding to his grip. “Um. Okay then.” Putting the jewel back on the table, he turned to find Kai only a step away, watching his moment of revelation with bright-eyed pleasure.
“Can I…um…I’d like to…” Joel closed the distance and slowly, waiting for a denial that didn’t come, curled his hand around the back of Kai’s neck and pulled him in for a brief, gentle kiss. When he let go, Kai’s eyes were shut and his ice-white mouth was smiling and faintly tingled with pink.
“Are you aware how rarely you finish a complete sentence?”
Joel blushed, delighted by the sweetness and the ease of the moment. [snip of the sentence for spoiler reasons]. This, though Kai was a far greater danger in real terms, made him feel cherished. Secure. “I can’t help it if you leave me speechless”.

I enjoyed the writing, but as you may see from the sample (or not) it is very descriptive, so definitely check out the publisher’s sample. Her style is one of many that I enjoy, but you may find that it is *too* descriptive for your liking.

The writing made me temporarily forget as to how fast their mutual attraction flared up,
but when I finished the book I came back to the Insta!Part of their Love and was not
happy about it. I think the reason I was not happy is because while we see constant fairy
tales undertones in the story (the Quest the King sent his sons on, the constant refrain that
the youngest son always wins, etc.), the depictions of the main characters are deeper than
what we often see in fairy tales, where the characters are frequently archetypes and the
Quest is the main point of the story.

In the “pure” fairy tale I would have much more tolerance for this kind of instant
attraction. I do realize that it occurs partially because the story is a novella – I have read
several novels by Alex Beecroft and know very well that she can write slow-burning love
stories to perfection. It is not the worst variety of Insta!Love by any means, and as I said
above, when I was reading the story the writing completely swept me away – it is when I
started thinking about it that the relative dissatisfaction came.

I really appreciated how very *unpleasant* a lot of Kai’s fellow elves felt to me. This is
not the first story I have read with elves not being all sweetness and divine light, but I
would still say that the majority of fantasy stories portray them in a positive. What I
appreciated the most is Kai’s characterization. He is a gentle soul overall, but he certainly
absorbed a lot of teachings of his world and even at the end of the story when Joel asks
him not to do certain things, he agrees because he loves Joel rather than because he thinks
Joel’s way of doing things is better. In other words, there was a lot in his character I
could relate to as sympathetic, decent and likeable, but there was always something in
him that felt alien to me and I really liked that. I liked that he felt like being from another
world, rather than just looking like one.

Joel seemed more like a White Knight type of guy to everybody around him, but even he
accepted some less than savory things being done for the greater good. I liked that too. I
liked how he felt more like an ordinary guy in the extraordinary situation rather than
Superman. But the battles scenes were very cool.

There was a certain plot point in the storyline that seemed like too great of a coincidence.
To avoid spoilers, I will just say that who the mobster who was after Joel turned out
to be bothered me. I mean, I accepted it for the sake of the story, but I found it jarring.
I would certainly read more about these guys and about this world.
Grade: B-/B
5.0 out of 5 stars "Fanciful, whimsical, and touches of irony put Too Many Fairy Princes above the crowd...." 19 July 2014
By MNix - Published on Amazon.com
King Volmar of Vagar had been mortally wounded, however strong magic keeps him cognizant long enough to assemble his four remaining sons. The fifth, his firstborn was disinherited and banned from the fairy kingdom long ago. Volmar reminds the Princes that only one will rule when he is gone.

One is killed quite soon. Prince Kjartan barely survives a murderous brother by escaping to Earth, London precisely, into a garbage heap. It’s three hundred years since Kjartan last peeked in on the human dimension and things have certainly changed in more ways than he can count.

The fairy kingdom tells stories of human cruelty and stupidity. The stories might all be true b,ut the Prince is lucky to be found by Joel Wilson. A young man with his own woes he nonetheless aids Kjartan, even renames him Kai. They become the most unlikely of friends and later, more. Together they change events in London and Vagar. Amazing what a little act of kindness can do.

Fanciful, whimsical, and touches of irony put Too Many Fairy Princes above the crowd. Joel is barely managing life when Kai stumbles or falls into his lap. Engaging characters and interesting plot twists will keep readers enchanted with this original story. Too Many Fairy Princes does the unexpected at every turn.

This book was reviewed by Lisa for Joyfully Reviewed (JR), and was provided by the publisher/author at no cost to JR for the purpose of being reviewed
5.0 out of 5 stars Good story. 9 May 2014
By Zandra Garratt - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This is a really good story and it is not as silly as it sounds. These fairies are more like the elves in Hellboy 2, with a darker ancient culture than the title suggests. It is about the second fairy prince that by mistake ends up on earth when he tries to get away from one of his brothers attempt on his life. A struggling artist with inherited money problems finds him and I just love how they are two people from vastly different cultures that try to interact with one and other and stay alive among mobsters and orcs. I really recommend it.
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