Book Review: No Man Can Tame by Miranda Honfleur
This book review of No Man Can Tame might be one I feel sorry for writing. A Twitter list recommended I read No Man Can Tame by Miranda Honfleur and although I don’t particularly like romance books, the premise sounded good (not to mention the title). This is an indie book of outstanding quality regarding the writing and editing, so I certainly didn’t regret purchasing it. The problem is that it kind of missed the target.
(Review contains spoilers.)
My rating: ★★★ (3/5)
Summary: Alessandra is a human princess whose father plans a wedding between Alessandra’s younger sister and a dark elf prince, Veron. Although the marriage could reinforce the economy and the military forces of both sides, Alessandra is against it, knowing her sister loves another who loves her back. Alessandra marries the elf prince herself.
Genre: Romance, High Fantasy
Audience: New Adult/Adult
Themes/potential trigger warnings: Forced/arranged marriage, gore
Reading the blurb on Amazon, I expected a lot of political intrigues and either a slow-burn or an enemies-to-lovers kind of romance. It sounded like the two main characters were opposites, and the title of the book is literally, No Man Can Tame. I was a bit surprised when Veron and Aless felt attracted to each other after 5 chapters.
I’ll start with the things I didn’t enjoy, so I can end this review on a positive note.
I think the characters are two-dimensional and hard to relate to. There is a war brewing in the background, and Aless worries about building a library for commoners when those are literally in danger and starving. Veron is incredibly obedient and diplomatic and the only thorn in his side seems to be the fact no one can make proper boots for him…?
I wish there was more character development so that the whole, “Will they be able to set aside their differences?” thing was more pronounced. For me, the setup part of the novel was lacking.
There was also a lot of name-dumping in the beginning, as if every character needed a name even when they had maybe 3 lines total in the book.
The confrontation was better, but still a little underwhelming. I don’t want to write too many spoilers, but the “villains” were nonexistent. It’s all a big misunderstanding, with an action scene that lasts two paragraphs and the battle is pretty one-sided thanks to the mage.
The book ends with no losses, which is honestly a big surprise to me. Aless even rekindles her toxic relationship with her father in the blink of an eye.
A Few Good Elements
Now, is it a fantasy romance? Yes. For those who love the genre, they will love this book.
The author excels at world-building. I liked what she did with the Italian references, the vocabulary, and the elvish culture. It was a delightful change from all the fantasy books that just use the same concepts and the same wording as every other novel, giving no clue to the reader whether said concepts mean the same as in other books or not.
I’m not a fan of this type of romance. I was expecting something else since Veron is a dark-elf, but he behaves very much like a human in every aspect, and the whole relationship and the so-called “not clean” scenes are so romanticized that I may have gotten diabetes every time they had an intimate moment. Although it doesn’t fit me, I can see some readers enjoy it.
To conclude this review, I’d say No Man Can Tame is a fairytale for grownups. A literal fairytale with unicorns, pixies, and all kinds of creatures ready to save the day. Again, it’s not for me, but for those who like this kind of story, I don’t think they will end up disappointed. Another thing that is certainly positive is the fact that the editing and formatting were on point and handled better than in most traditionally published books.
Will I continue with the series?
It crossed my mind to read the second book in this series, but what’s keeping me from doing so is definitely the over-romanticized part. Honfleur’s characters are interesting and promising, but ultimately, I know this isn’t right up my alley. However, the fact I’ve considered picking up the second book is a clear sign that despite the differences in taste, Honfleur is a skilled writer who makes you want to know what happens to her characters.
Perhaps one day!
What did I read after this book? K.A. Knight’s Den of Vipers!