Loathing the thought of his beloved Oriana in the arms of another man, fearless Zyraxes delivers death upon the Roman enemy. With only the rugged land as his bed and the sky as his blanket, trouble finds him often.
Summoned to aid Oriana’s father in the war against two powerful enemies—one of them Oriana's savage husband—Zyraxes proves himself worthy of more than just noble titles and coin. But he wants none of it. What he wants is her.
When Zyraxes discovers a broken and nearly dead Oriana, though forbidden, he disregards her father's orders to leave her to her death, and instead chooses to protect and conceal her. Will saving her be enough to win her heart? Will his part royal lineage make him worthy of her love?
My Review of Born in Sin
The first book in the series, originally titled I Was Here - Before You Came, and recently retitled Born in Vengeance to be more in accordance with the series, is a short story. It was published in the It's a Love Thing anthology by Prose by Design (which I happen to co-own) so I'm very familiar with the story as well as the journey for Camelia in writing this series.
Camelia hails from Romania, though she's lived in the USA for the past nine or ten years. So the subject of these books is very near and dear to her heart - the rise of Romania as a country. The first book follows Ilias, and his love for the daughter of his sworn enemy, Nerva. The sequel, Born in Sin, follows Ilias' brother Zyraxes and his longing for childhood love Oriana.
Their's is a sweet love story, one of being forced apart by social expectation and circumstance, and then thrown back together in the midst of a hopeless battle. He finds Oriana, beaten, broken, nearly dead, and hides her, nursing her back to health in spite of the risk to his own life by doing so. My favorite part of their love story is that it's so believable. There's no instant look of burning desire. There's a history of innocent love between them, and familiarity. Zyraxes longs for her, wanting nothing more than to be with her. It's impossible, though - or so he thinks. She's married and royalty, and he's simply the bastard son of a king, and a warrior.
My favorite part of the story overall is the language in which it's written. Camelia wrote it first person, present tense, and her prose is appropriate for the time period, making it feel as if you're reading Zyraxes' private journals. This hardened, tough warrior has a romantic, poetic heart which you see through his thoughts. Obviously he's not going to spout poetry to his warrior buddies. There's an excerpt below so you can see what I mean about her prose.
I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy historical books, or historical romance. Camelia captures the feel of the time perfectly, plunging you into their violent, desperate world. You can feel her passion for the subject of the rise of Romania. You can pick up a copy beginning on 5/30/13 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online retailers. Check Camelia's website for links when they become available.
Excerpt from Born in Sin
Horror pains Oriana’s face when she sees me. I wouldn’t recognize her had I seen her in a crowd. Dark bruises mar her jaw and right temple. Her hair, once beautifully braided, is now a dry mud and straw-tangled mass, framing a deadly pale face. She strains to get up, but she’s too weak. “We are lost,” she cries, “why did you bring him?”
~Who I am is not important but what I leave behind is~~ © 2013 Camelia Miron Skiba
I’m a sinner
I love my books
I conjure hooks
And heroes with good looks
Taking me to places with new decor
Come join me if you dare
I promise not to bore
Pray my husband continues snorin’
For he’s the one who keeps me up at night
When I give my heroes wings and flight.