Kushiel’s Chosen (Phèdre’s Trilogy, #2) by Jacqueline Carey Download (read online) free eBook .pdf.epub.kindle

Kushiel's Chosen (Phèdre's Trilogy, #2)

Mighty Kushiel, of rod and weal
Late of the brazen portals
With blood-tipp’d dart a wound unhealed
Pricks the eyen of chosen mortals

The land of Terre d’Ange is a place of unsurpassed beauty and grace. The inhabiting race rose from the seed of angels and men, and they live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.

Phèdre nó Delaunay was sold into indentured servitude as a child. H

The land of Terre d’Ange is a place of unsurpassed beauty and grace. The inhabiting race rose from the seed of angels and men, and they live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.

Phèdre nó Delaunay was sold into indentured servitude as a child. Her bond was purchased by a nobleman, the first to recognize that she is one pricked by Kushiel’s Dart, chosen to forever experience pain and pleasure as one. He trained Phèdre in the courtly arts and the talents of the bedchamber—and, above all, the ability to observe, remember, and analyze.

When she stumbled upon a plot that threatened the very foundations of her homeland, she gave up almost everything she held dear to save it. She survived, and lived to have others tell her story, and if they embellished the tale with fabric of mythical splendor, they weren’t far off the mark.

The hands of the gods weigh heavily upon Phèdre’s brow, and they are not finished with her. While the young queen who sits upon the throne is well loved by the people, there are those who believe another should wear the crown… and those who escaped the wrath of the mighty are not yet done with their schemes for power and revenge.

Cover art by John Jude Palencar
…more


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    mark monday

    Jul 02, 2016

    rated it
    really liked it

    Shelves:
    fantastickal

    I was waffling between 3 & 4 stars on this one, but since the second book in this series was a marked improvement for me on the first book, 4 stars it is.

    our intrepid heroine Phèdre – courtesan supreme with a very special talent for transmuting pain into pleasure – makes her debut redux as a titled Lady and so re-enters various schemes and plots at a very different level. and with that elimination of class issues (as well as the death of her charming pimp patron in the first book) came the e

    our intrepid heroine Phèdre – courtesan supreme with a very special talent for transmuting pain into pleasure – makes her debut redux as a titled Lady and so re-enters various schemes and plots at a very different level. and with that elimination of class issues (as well as the death of her charming pimp patron in the first book) came the erasure of a lot of what annoyed me previously. which is odd because I love reading books about class warfare. maybe I am just a softie though, because I’d prefer to read about such things from the perspective of a fully empowered and independent woman capable of making her own decisions rather than reading about it from the perspective of a woman used as a pawn and sex puppet-cum-spy. the word “cum” in that last sentence was used in the formal, non-pornographic sense so keep your minds out of the gutter, pervs. and it’s not like there’s much class warfare in either book anyway – the appeal of these books rest in the heavy-breathing erotic atmosphere combined with all sorts of courtly intrigue.

    which is kept front and center. what a relief! no gallivanting off to versions of Germania and Brittania to have eye-rolling adventures involving barbarians and swordplay and torture. Carey does a fabulous job in making these intrigues as compelling as any battle. her versions of France and Italy are wonderful creations and I was salivating over the combination of ambiguous character motivations, political machinations full of sneaky feints and double-edged words, assassination plots, and a search for a thoroughly enchanting villainess, all delivered amidst delightfully lush descriptions of the various locales through which Phèdre and her retinue travel. it was all quite delicious – a tasty meal.

    other observations:

    magic was kept at a minimum. it was handled poorly in the first book; its appearance here (during a sojourn in a version of Crete) was a bit painful but thankfully brief.

    love story was front and center. still rather annoying but this time I did sort of feel for poor Joscelin. must be hard to have a girlfriend who still rents herself out, despite being a Lady of the Court.

    the mythology of this world, featuring Elua (Jesus’ sorta son) and his fallen angel companions, was as absorbing as ever.

    it was nice to see a sadistic top actually portrayed as a good guy. well, not a bad guy, at least. the first book’s bdsm trappings ended up feeling a bit hypocritical when all of its s&m tops were clearly villainous assholes. that’s not the case here. Severio (ha! that name!) may be a spoiled, grouchy fratboy of a prince, but he’s not evil and is actually pretty supportive once he realizes his tastes don’t automatically make him a monster. he just needed to find a partner like Lady Phèdre to make him feel okay with himself. aww! and all that said, I was thankful that the bdsm scenes that dominated the first novel were minimized in this book. I guess I’m just not a big fan of that sort of stuff (anymore).

    I also finally began to understand why, sexually, our heroine is a very special person. in the first book, I found the assertion that no one like her had been born in hundreds of years to be a bit hard to swallow – getting some degree of pleasure from some forms of pain is not exactly a super-rare attribute. thousands of fetish sites can surely attest to that. however this book provided a couple eye-opening examples: Phèdre going into orgasmic convulsions when being angrily shaken by Joscelin and, more amusingly, after getting pricked by a seamstress’ needle while being fitted for one of her typically gorgeous gowns. okay Phèdre, I get it, you are definitely a very special person. don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!
    …more

    Choko

    Feb 03, 2018

    rated it
    really liked it

    *** 4.35 ***

    A Buddy Read with the FBR group!

    This second book in the Phedre Trilogy was, in my opinion, better than the first. The pacing was much better and it kept you on your toes throughout. It had some lull moments, but they were well spaced and gave the main heroine time for some angst and going through all the facts and things she had done wrong and has to plan to do still… The more dynamic format might have positively been assisted by the smaller page count, although at 678 pages it is

    A Buddy Read with the FBR group!

    This second book in the Phedre Trilogy was, in my opinion, better than the first. The pacing was much better and it kept you on your toes throughout. It had some lull moments, but they were well spaced and gave the main heroine time for some angst and going through all the facts and things she had done wrong and has to plan to do still… The more dynamic format might have positively been assisted by the smaller page count, although at 678 pages it is still a hefty tome.


    “…“Why is there ever this perverse cruelty in humankind, that makes us hurt most those we love best?” …”

    This book starts about an year after the end of the first. You would have thought that Countess Phèdre nó Delaunay would be satisfied with her new title, estates, and the love of the man she seems to love as well, the ex-warrior monk Joscelin, but the Chosen of Kushiel doesn’t seem to be satisfied with kicking her heels in the genteel country society, so she decides to take the bate and go on a search for the treacherous and very alluring vileness Melisande Shahirizai , who escaped her imprisonment and death sentence. In order to pursue her quarry she goes back to the seat of the royal family and rededicates herself to the goddess Namaah, thinking that by bedding as many nobles as she could, she might find who conspired and helped Melisande, and might be able to figure out where to find and detain her. This of course puts a big dent into the relationship she has with Joscelin and that comes to a complete halt when he decides to start studding with this alternative World’s Christians, who actually read much more like the Hasidim Jews of our world. He fits perfectly with them, since they have been promised in a prophecy a country of their own, and he gets to train them to fight. Things between him and Phedre really go bad and this rift comes in play when he is not there to protect her.


    “…“And having once chosen, never to seek to return to the crossroads of that decision-for even if one chooses wrongly, the choice cannot be unmade.” …”

    Meanwhile, Phedre gets introduced to a young noble with a temper, a brother and sister who love to chat about court intrigue, a very crabby prince and another beautiful and charismatic woman, which Jacqueline Carey is obviously very good at writing. Queen Ysandre de la Courcey puts on a good show as well, but nothing and no one can compare with Melisande Shahirizai and the heat that comes off the pages when she is in any proximity to Phedre!!! Wow! I hate her, because she is infinitely cruel, but I can’t help but love her too!!! Now that is a women of which even the big boys have to be terrified! Good for girl power, but still a bad person in the end….


    “…“They are fools, who reckon Elua a soft god, fit only for the worship of starry-eyed lovers. Let the warriors clamor after gods of blood and thunder; love is hard, harder than steel and thrice as cruel. It is as inexorable as the tides, and life and death alike follow in it’s wake.” …”

    I love the mish-mash of cultures, religions, deities, and characters so much, that I even choose to overlook the heavy irregularities of time periods of different countries co-existing at the same time in the Ms. Carey’s world. I will go with “this is Fantasy” so things like that can happen and it is OK! I also love that in the main land where Phedre comes from, love is acceptable in all forms as long as it is between consenting adults. Yes, this whole series is full of sexual relationships – after all, Phedre is a servant of Namaah, which makes her a highly paid prostitute and is also chosen by Kushiel. which makes her really appreciative of the pain and domination which comes with it at times. So yeah, she is using her skills as a sex professional to spy for Queen and Country!!! She is a true patriot:):):):)


    “…“The pain of the flesh is naught to that of the heart” …”

    If you are willing to accept the sex as just her job and take it as a background, this story is actually pure adventure and very good one at that! I was even toying with going for 5 stars, but there were things I couldn’t overlook, so almost 5 stars it is. I am very glad that some friends encouraged me to start the series and I am looking forward to the next installment with trepidation!!! You have to give it a try!


    “…“If you thought better of me, you would not be so surprised” …”

    Now I wish you all Happy Reading and many more wonderful Books to come!
    …more

    Nikki

    With the expectations Kushiel’s Dart gave me, I might have been worried that Kushiel’s Chosen wouldn’t match up. I wasn’t, but I wouldn’t have needed to be anyway. I loved this book just as much as the first one. Everything I’ve said about how it’s not for everyone still stands (see my first review), although there was less sex, I think, and perhaps more of the politics. Somehow, this book didn’t feel as dense as that one, but there’s still a lot of content considering it’s the second book of a

    The stage is set, in this book, so there isn’t such a flurry of characters being thrown at you. The new ones, such as Nicola L’Envers y Aragon and Sevario Stregazza, are quite interesting (not least because of the sex scenes, I have to admit). It’s lovely to see how Jacqueline Carey weaves the characters so neatly into the plot — there are no useless characters. I was sorry not to see anything of Hyacinthe in this book, and I was glad that he wasn’t ignored. Ysandre was one of my favourite characters in the latter part of this book: she’s written as such a strong, strong character.

    The relationship between Joscelin and Phèdre was more painful than ever in this book, so I was very, very glad of the end. I’m not sure it could have continued as it was without getting needlessly painful and boring. While the new development makes me happy now, I have no doubts that Joscelin and Phèdre will find new ways to hurt my heart — and that’s good. The relationship between Melisande and Phèdre is still wonderfully handled. The thin line between love and hate that lies between them is perfectly walked. The scene where Phèdre smashes her head back against something to distract herself from Melisande’s kiss is amazing.

    Plotwise, it was so good. It seriously surprised me in various places, leaving me to flail and keyboard bash and fangirl at anyone willing to listen. The twists and turns are surprising, and yet brilliantly set up: once it’s happened you think, “Oh. Yes. Of course.”

    There’s a lovely conclusion, ending the book with some closure and yet also with threads still waiting to be tied up in the final book of the trilogy. I can’t wait. I’m tempted to buy the Imriel books already, but I think I’ll wait until they’re all out in paperback — painful as that will be.

    I seriously recommend this trilogy, if you don’t mind a bit of BDSM sex woven into the plot (you can skip it, after all).
    …more