Book Reviews

The Chosen by Annette Gisby at Lyrical Press

Genre Fantasy / Adventure / Gay Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 06-October-2012

Book Blurb

Love or duty -- which would you choose? Prince Severin has been brought up to put duty before all else. Now, his duty is to marry and produce an heir. He has his choice of princesses. Unfortunately, his passion is for princes. Havyn has been a slave all his life. When his powers are discovered, he finds himself purchased and freed by a Prince and apprenticed to the royal wizard, Ildar. His duty is to stay chaste to keep his powers strong. Unfortunately, his passion is for Severin. With kingdoms at war, the throne hanging in the balance, and magic in the air, can the two men find happiness together, or is duty more important than love?

Book Review

“Seek happiness for its own sake, and you will not find it; seek for duty, and happiness will follow as the shadow comes with the sunshine.” Tryon Edwards


In 'The Chosen' by Annette Gisby, Prince Severin feels trapped between love and duty. Since there is no reasonable way to honor both, he tries to stay on the fence, hoping something will happen to free him from his burden. He embarks on a journey toward what he believes must be his destiny, with a heavy heart. It's only when he gives himself up to his duty that his happiness comes into sight. The thing is, can he capture it?


I admired Prince Severin for his loyalty to Ildar, his wizard and caregiver, and the love and respect he showed to his mother. He and his father are at odds with each other;  his father is harder on his son than anyone else because it will make him stronger. He has a princely air about him, yet he isn't above doing everyday things when necessary. Severin tries hard to fulfill his role as prince, and he is obligated to produce an heir, but his heart isn't in it. He also tries to keep his distance from Hayvn, knowing that being with him would cause problems for him. He tries to be honorable, but he's used to getting what he wants and it's quite difficult for him. He is considerate of other people's feelings and can be quite charming. When called for, he's quite assertive too, and takes advantage of situations which end up being beneficial to everyone. In this, he shows himself to be a true leader and problem solver.


Havyn was my favorite character. He's a sweet young man who has had the misfortune of being stolen and sold as a slave. Even through all of this he remains good-hearted, generous and truthful. Havyn never complains about his mistreatment or lowers himself to being bitter and angry about it. He gladly, if not reluctantly, accepts Severin and Ildar's friendship and their faith in him and makes the most of it.  He also has a strong moral compass which is challenged by his feelings for Severin. He hates to lie and be deceitful, but his loyalties are tested and his wants and needs get in the way of his thinking. Havyn isn't portrayed as a victim, but as a person who has the strength and dignity to rise above his problems.


This is an alternate world, grown-up fairy tale, full of all the things you'd expect in one and more. It has knights, kingdoms, castles, kings, princes, queens, wizards, and magic. It also has lots of angst, deceit, murder, intrigue, secrets, and passion. The world-building is good and covers many aspects of life in what seems to be the middle ages. The contrasts between the two kingdoms are well done—the progressive kingdom versus the regressive one, explaining the differences and similarities between the two. There are some surprising twists and turns in the story as well as quite predictable ones and, as in any fairy tale, all the problems are worked out and almost everyone lives happily after. I'd recommend this story to anyone who wants to escape into a fantastical world where almost anything can happen. Thanks, Annette, for another good story.




DISCLAIMER:  Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book was provided by Lyrical Press for the purpose of a review..


Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 52000 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 05-April-2010
Price $4.50
Buy Link