Book Reviews

Aquamarines of Courage 1 (Gemstone Chronicles 3) by Serena Yates at Diversity Novels

Genre Gay / Science Fiction / Paranormal / Aliens / Shifters / Interspecies / Romance / Action/Adventure
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 05-March-2013

Book Blurb

"Courage is like a cut gemstone: multi-faceted and surprising at every turn." -- The Collector

Nico escaped a fate of running his rich family's business empire to follow his real calling: discovering ancient artifacts. As a modern-day treasure hunter, he lives for the adventure of researching a lost object, pinpointing its likely location, then hopefully retrieving it. When he finds a mysterious stranger washed up on his beach one day he is intrigued and more than ready to help him find the Aquamarines of Courage. That quest proves to be his biggest adventure yet.

Nayder has a family obligation to find his soul-partner and become the Chief Stabilizer on N'Tyre, making sure water and land are in perfect balance. The entire N'Tyrian culture depends on maintaining the foothold on land their underwater heritage has only recently allowed them to gain. There is only one problem: his father expects him to partner with a woman and produce offspring. Nayder has different ideas and thinks he can do his job without a soul-partner. Defying his father's orders, he instead attempts to retrieve the Aquamarines of Courage by himself.

But fate has different ideas. Nayder ends up on Earth to discover that Nico may be his soul-partner. Only once they have found the Aquamarines of Courage will they know if they are truly meant to be partnered…


NOTE: This book has been previously released in November 2012. No changes have been made to the story, it is identical to the previous version.

Book Review

In the third volume of the Gemstone Chronicles, 'Aquamarines of Courage' by Serena Yates, we see that the Collector is making good progress in his quest to discover who he is and how he can influence his environment. Gone are the drab colors he was first surrounded with, replacing them are more vibrant, exciting ones. He's learned that he can create things with just a thought and is having fun experimenting. His latest creation is an exercise area and surprisingly enough the Writer joins him in his athletics, albeit, slower and probably with sore muscles to come. The Collector is able to enjoy more of the facilities and marvels at all the other creations. He's taking more initiative instead of waiting for one of the others to show him things or to help him sort out what he's feeling. Instead of being lonely, he's making friends with those around him which is definitely improving his attitude. He's also able to see a connection between his own experiences and those of the stories. As delightful as they are, he's beginning to realize that there is a higher purpose; the lessons taught in the stories are ones he needs to learn which adds another entire dimension to the tales. I'm delighted with his progress and am cheering for him to go all the way to whatever constitutes bliss for him.

We all desire being courageous, but it often means reaching out into the unknown or unaccepted. Interfering with the status quo is often met with resistance and it is during those times that our courage may elude us. Nayder wants to live his life differently than his parents or society expect him to. He's supposed to marry a woman but he's gay and has no desire to follow the norm. Instead of standing up to the resistance, he tries to avoid it, pretending to do what they want. When he half-heartedly agrees to search for his soul-partner, he doesn't realize that they have inadvertently given him the choice he wanted. It seems that instead of a woman, he meets a man, Nico, and because all soul-partners have the same birthmark, he realizes that he's gotten his wish. He's found a way to do what is expected, within the rules, even though the solution is unconventional.

Nico rebelled against his parents' wishes for him to be in the family business just as Nayder did, but took a more assertive approach. He was courageous and upfront about his distain for their lifestyle and did something drastic. Nico left the corporate life with all its rules and restrictions behind to pursue his true calling—treasure hunting. When he met Nayder, he felt the same draw as Nayder did. He instinctively knows that they are made for each other. As Nico finds out more about him, he is intrigued and just adventuresome enough to believe Nayder's story of being from another planet and joins him in his search for the Aquamarines of Courage. When they find them and are transported back to Nayder's world, not only do they meet almost insurmountable resistance, but are cast into a crisis which could mean the end of existence which, unless balance is restored, could end life as Nayder's people know it. The objective is to put the Aquamarines of Courage back from where they were stolen which will set things right again. Not one to back down from a challenge, Nico is an inspiration for Nayder. With Nico's encouragement Nayder finds his stride; with their love to guide them, they make an unbeatable team.

'Aquamarines of Courage' is an excellent addition to the Gemstone Chronicles. It furthers not only the Collector's world, but introduces us to Nico and Nader's, reminding us that courage is a very special attribute and many great things have been accomplished by those who possess it. This series is so different, yet so engaging. Simply the number of layers inherent in the tale is mind boggling, not to mention the many subplots which are seamlessly interwoven throughout, which are amazing in their own right. This series is, indeed, more complex than others and may require more thought, but the energy exerted in experiencing them is well worth the extra effort involved. I'm anxiously awaiting the fourth book in the series. Thank you, Serena, not only for the lovely romance, but, also for the message that different does not necessarily mean unequal.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Diversity Novels for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 175 pages/52000 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 15-February-2013
Price $5.99 ebook
Buy Link