Poison Marked (Ana’s Review)

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Title: Poison Marked
Author: T.J. Nichols
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 1, 2017
Genre(s): Holiday, Historical
Reviewed by: Ana
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Kill his lover or disobey his king and instigate civil war?

As the feared court poison master, Nikko is sworn to do as his king bids. As the lover of the king’s nephew, Lord Rodas, Nikko must hide his affection or risk being labeled a traitor and punished. A former thief who clawed his way into the palace from the filthy streets, Nikko longs to be deserving of Rodas’s love.

A respected war hero, Rodas is in a delicate political situation. He is not the kingdom’s natural heir, though many support his claim over the wastrel, Prince Fortin. The last thing Rodas wants is war. His highest ambition is for Nikko to openly wear the jewels he’s bestowed on him as a public declaration of their love.

Neither man is prepared for the king to order Nikko to poison Rodas during the solstice feast or for the deadly intrigue they’re plunged into, which exposes their affair and rocks the foundations of the kingdom.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar “Stocking Stuffers.”

It wasn’t what I had in mind when I think of a holiday story. Maybe that’s why I liked it so much. I love when I don’t know what to expect and this was just like that.

Rodas and Nikko were really good characters. Perhaps a little bit too perfect, something I usually wouldn’t like, but I loved them anyway. The story was great, especially the last pages that were so exciting. The plot was very intriguing, so full of conspiracies and loyal characters that were willing to make any kind of sacrifices in order to do what they were supposed to do. I loved the part love play in the story, it was heartbreaking to see the struggles they had to face.

I generally stay away from historicals, is not my favorite genre, but this one had something that attracted me so much that I wanted to read it. It was a right decision, I enjoyed so much this story. Nikko was my favorite part of it. The only issue I had with it was that I would love to see more alone time between Nikko and Rodas, maybe a little bit more romance. But in general I was very pleased with it. I had a great time reading it.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Poison Marked provided by Publisher in exchange of an honest review.


I love to read M/M books. I’m still doing a lot of catching up with some series and getting to know some authors. I love to read stories with dark themes, a lot of angst and complex characters. I’ve always been interested on how mental illness is portray in books, so I would probably read any book with that subject.

Here are some of my favorite books


Strain Violence Vegets Arctic Absolution Dark Soul The dreams you made in the Dirt
Fog Bought Caged Jaye Evenfall The Invasion of Tork

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