The Stagsblood Prince (Book One of the Stagsblood Trilogy)


Worth reading 😎

A M/M fantasy novel romance, adventure, redemption and love. Definitely LGBTQ+ romance worth reading.

The Stagsblood Prince by Gideon E Wood is a fantasy fiction novel and the first in The Stagsblood Triliogy. In this world, the LGBTQ+ community is accepted throughout the novel. This story is about love, redemption and transformation, but it's also about grief. This book reads like a standalone novel. The characters grow through a lot but it feels like a complete story, whereas other books from trilogies usually use the first book to set up the rest of the trilogy.

This book is told exclusively through Tel's perspective. Tel is the 40 year old Prince of Feigh. He is an alcoholic not able to go an hour without a drink. The novel starts out with Tel waking up hungover in bed with a stranger. He is selfish and self-absorbed. He does not weigh what his actions does to those around him. This continues for approximately the first third of the book. When he ruins Caip's birthday and wakes up the next day to everyone he cares about upset with him, he decides to get sober... again. Considering his drunkenness and his inability to stay with the same person for more than a night contributed to his loss of the throne, this decision is the more mature one in the whole novel. Caip is Tel's righthand woman, the captain of his guard, and best friend. She is stubborn, headstrong and loves Tel as family. But she is also his biggest enabler. Vared is the literal opposite of Tel. He is selfless to a fault, kind and opens Tel's heart to love after so many years closed off. Vared is one of the main reasons that Tel pulls himself out of his addiction and depression. The romance between Vared and Tel is a slow burn. Neither man want to give into their emotions and tell the other. Tel's brother, Lag and his uncle Aith are the main villains of the book. However, this story mostly revolves around Tel's struggles with sobriety and his decision making after the civilians of Feigh rally in his name after Lag and Aith pushes for their ideal "pure" Feigh, their rhetoric of ignorance and division.

Gideon E Wood's pacing in this novel is great. The scenes and events piece together nicely. There are ups and downs and chances to breathe throughout the plot. The battle scenes between Tel and his brother are well written. I just wish there was more showing and not as much "thought about" in Tel's mind. Yes, this is told through Tel's perspective, however it feels at some points that you are more reading a diary after the fact than reading as the events happen. The plot is good. It's pretty typical of a fantasy novel regarding the hero's redemption and sacrifices and leads to a happy-ish ending. the best part of this novel is the M/M romance and seeing how Vared influences Tel to become his true self through healing the pains of his past. The next book is through Vared's perspective. Although it would be interesting to see the world through his eyes. I feel like this would have been best left as a standalone novel.

Reviewed by

I am a millennial woman who has loved books and reading since childhood. I’m constantly reading. 1-2 books a day when I'm in a reading frenzy, but average 12-15 books a month. Lover of Fantasy novels, perferably with twists and turns you don't see coming. Always looking for a new read.


About the author

Gideon E. Wood writes gay fantasy fiction. He has been proudly clean and sober since 2011. Second chances and transformation are at the heart of his work. Gideon lives in New England with his cat but thinks it’s important you know he isn’t a cat person. view profile

Published on February 07, 2021

120000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Genre: Fantasy

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