Radiance – Review

radiance cover

Hi everyone! How are you doing? I am still struggling to get out of my reading slump, but the past few days, I managed to read 50 pages per day. Improvement! I might need to pick up some fluffy romance to breeze through, that always seems to help me. Speaking of romance… Let’s talk about Radiance, by Grace Draven!

Ildiko is the niece of the Gauri king. Her only worth to the royal family lies in a strategic marriage. Which is why the king arranges a marriage to Brishen, the “spare” prince of the Kai. But Brishen is not human and the two are repulsed by each other’s looks at first. Brought together through duty and politics, they soon discover they are destined for each other.

Okay, so at the end of 2018, I read Master of Crows by Grace Draven. I wanted to finish that year with some swoony romance in a fantasy setting. And I loved it. So in 2019, I did the same thing, this time picking up Radiance, by the same author.

Focused on the romance

And if swoony romance in a fantasy setting is what you’re looking for, I can recommend this one!

The plot is very focused on the romance, which gives us plenty of time to see how these characters see each other and how their feelings change. There is some side plot, but it actually very minor and now, a month later, I had almost forgotten what that side plot was. So don’t read this book if you expect intricate politics, is what I’m saying.

The story is told from both Ildiko and Brishen’s POV. And I loved both main characters! Ildiko was witty, strong and smart. I hate it when characters rush into dangerous situations despite being warned not to, so I was happy to see that Ildiko has more than one brain cell when it comes to self-preservation. And Brishen is so sweet! The man might have gray skin and lethal claws, but he is so kind and respectful towards Ildiko!


Marriages of convenience are not exactly rare in fiction. Just a few months ago, I read Serpent & Dove, for example, in which a witch and a witch hunter are forced to marry. These marriages often create tons of tension and conflict between the two characters. But in Radiance, this goes a bit differently. They don’t start off hating each other. In fact, they get along well through their shared sense of humour and wit. Which was refreshing to read! I mean, I am a sucker for enemies-to-lovers, as you might know by now, but sometimes it’s nice to read something else. 

Oh, I mentioned earlier that there wasn’t a lot of plot going on except for the romance. However, we do get a massive cliffhanger that sets up the story for the sequel, Eidolon. Supposedly there is also a third book coming in this series (titled The Ippos King), but I can’t find any definitive info about a release date, not even on the author’s website

My conclusion for Radiance is quite short: I was looking for fluff and fluff is what I got, so I’m happy!

Radiance Book Cover Radiance
Grace Draven
Man-woman relationships

Ildiko has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn't just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she's known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light. Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.

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