This was a very enjoyable m/m fantasy read about a prince who is shuffled off into a marriage to a Lord, under his jerky father's orders to act as a spy. But poor Ingram soon realizes that everything is not as it seems--his new husband is more than a dragon-slaying brute, his father's demands are rooted in baseless paranoia, and he even finds within himself aspects and depths and courage that he never realized he had.
I liked Ingram and Mallory very much; they have a slow, but sweet developing romance. It's the kind when weighted looks mean so much, even if the person being looked at doesn't realize it yet. (But the reader does.)
This is a very fun, light read--it has some angst as Ingram deals with his low self-confidence and the verbal abuse from his father, but overall, it's not dark, and the mood is like a mix of fairy tales and a Jane Austen-level of romance (where things are a slow build, often based on dialogue and growing trust as opposed to heaving, smutty sexy times.)
For sexy times, it's romantic, but very "clean"--at the level of kisses, hand-holding, and maybe something fade-to-black. Don't go in wanting in-depth sexy times. Go in for a sweet, developing romance in a fantasy setting. (In a way, this could also be enjoyed by someone looking for a m/m YA fantasy as well--it's that level of clean.)
As for the ending, it ends on a HFN with more story to come. I read some reviews that mentioned a cliffhanger ending, and from my view, it doesn't read that cliffy. There's still looming Danger and unresolved questions, but the MCs are solid, and I left off both satisfied with this story, and excited to read more whenever the next one comes out.
Recommended for those who especially like light fantasy with their m/m, and are fine with a more sweet romance. Overall, a very fun read. This was my first book I've read by Carter, and I'll definitely check out more. (I hope the next book comes soon...)