Saturday 24 June 2023

Book Review: The Court of the Undead by F.M. Aden (Fantasy Romance)

Title: The Court of the Undead
Author: F.M. Aden
Publisher: Northern Light Press
Publication Date: 20 December 2023
Pages: 210
Format: eBook - EPUB
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Source: ARC via NetGalley

From a young age, Yara and her sister Aylin grew up on tales of the vampir whispered to them in the dark by their superstitious nursemaid. It isn’t until the fateful day, Yara is kidnapped and brought to the fortress of the Undying King that she realizes that she is far from the safety of the Ottoman court. Tucked into the high mountains of Wallachia, the court of the undead is home to the trueborn vampir, their sired vampir flock, and their miserable hoard of blood slaves.

While Aylin joins a group of trained hunters to bring her sister back home. Yara finds herself trapped between a set of beautiful and manipulative twin brothers who intend to use her for their own amusement and deceptions. Caught between the free-spirited and obsessive Volkan and the power-hungry and villainous Eldar, Yara must betray them both if she ever hopes to make it back home alive.

As tension builds at the vampir court and the hunters start their march, Yara must decide who to trust with her loyalty. And with her heart.


It was the blurb of The Court of the Undead that first caught my interest. The story sounded very much my cup of tea, so I decided to request it and give it a try. Unfortunately, it didn't really live up to my expectations. On the plus side, the setting and the premise were both interesting and helped to set the book apart from others in the same genre. However, the execution was a little lacking. The world building felt clunky, with too much 'telling', especially in the first quarter or so of the book. The characters, too, lacked depth, their actions and speech wooden and their relationships feeling forced. There was plenty of promise here, though. F.M. Aden clearly has a great imagination and I think if the prose style and characterisation could be improved they could produce something good in this genre in the future. This book gets 2.5 stars from me overall, but I will raise that to three on Goodreads for the sake of the interesting story idea.

I received this book as a free eBook ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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