review: fence volumes 1-3 > I need more.

In March 2019, I saw that 12 issues of the Fence graphic novels written by C.S. Pacat were available on Scribd, and immediately decided to give them a try. I’d heard so many people on BookTube rave about this series! However, I didn’t want the hype to have an impact on my enjoyment of the issues either so I tried to lower my expectations before going in. I needn’t have worried about being let down whatsoever. I ended up binge-reading all 13 issues in one day, and am now desperate for news on the next volumes.

Yes, I am fully aware that Fence volume 3 technically hasn’t been released yet. However, that vol.  includes issues 9 through 12, which I read separately. It was easier to mark the three volumes as read rather than the 13 separate issues.

Fence by C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad, Joana LaFuente★★★★★ – a new favorite

Nicholas Cox is determined to prove himself in the world of competitive fencing, and earn his place alongside fencing legends like the dad he never knew, but things get more complicated when he’s up against his golden-boy half-brother, as well as sullen fencing prodigy, Seiji Katayama.

Nicholas, the illegitimate son of a retired fencing champion, is a scrappy fencing wunderkind, and dreams of getting the chance and the training to actually compete. After getting accepted to the prodigious Kings Row private school, Nicholas is thrust into a cut-throat world, and finds himself facing not only his golden-boy half-brother, but the unbeatable, mysterious Seiji Katayama…


I was a bit hesitant to pick this up because I know absolutely nothing about fencing, and was afraid I would miss out on a lot of the story or find it boring.  That definitely wasn’t the case here.

This is the story of Nicholas Cox, who is determined to prove himself as a competitive fencer so he can show everyone he is just as good as his dad. Nicholas grew up quite poor, and his dad was never around. Coming face-to-face with his golden-boy half-brother, the one who does receive all the attention from their father, angers Nicholas to no end, and he is determined to prove to the world he is just as good.

However, fencing is an incredibly competitive and expensive sport. Nicholas is at a clear disadvantage as he has never been able to afford the private tutoring needed to push him to the next level. Until he gets a scholarship to Kings Row private school. In order to keep his scholarship though, he needs to make it on the fencing team.

That’s not the only goal Nicholas has in mind though. He also desperately wants to beat Seiji, who has never lost a match. Their rivalry pushes Nicholas to train more and more, and intrigues Seiji as well.

I can’t tell you how much I love these graphic novels. I couldn’t stop reading them! The entire storyline is so tense, because you can’t help but root for Nicholas, who is definitely the underdog in this scenario. Watching him play match after match, trying to figure out whether he’ll make the team or not is incredibly nerve-wracking. It makes for a very captivating read.

While there’s a tense feeling throughout the volumes, I have to admit that the story itself is quite slow. You don’t progress much through the story or time with each volume. At first, that didn’t really bother me because it allows you to get to know the characters more. It also allows the author to make some space for the development of side characters. However, when you reach the end of volume 3 and still have virtually no answers, it becomes somewhat annoying. Especially since I can’t find any information on issue #13 or volume 4.

I presume that when the graphic novels develop further, there will be an M/M romance at the forefront. There’s plenty of chemistry and tension already, so I can’t wait to watch that happen. Seriously, I can’t wait. When will the next volume be released?? Someone help me!

Here’s what it all comes down to: I love the story, I love all the characters, and I love the artwork. I love every single thing about this series.


I feel like I can’t really say much more about this story without ruining all the fun for you all. At this point, all I can really point out is that if you haven’t read the graphic novels yet, you should pick them up. They’re fun and captivating reads. I promise you won’t regret it. I still have to buy myself some paperback volumes because I read them on Scribd earlier but definitely want to own my own copies. Have you read these graphic novels? What did you think of them? Is there any news on the next volume yet?

My Thoughts on the Captive Prince Trilogy | Spoiler Free

This is a spoiler free review on the entire trilogy.

Synopsis of Captive Prince: Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos, but when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave. Beautiful, manipulative and deadly, his new master Prince Laurent epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country. For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else . . .  

Goodreads | Bookdepository

Captive Prince // 3.5 stars
Prince’s Gambit // 4 stars
Kings Rising // 4 stars

review

I had seen this trilogy on some blogs and YouTube channels, and it sounded really intriguing to me. Why? Because it’s so different. Yes, this is a fantasy trilogy. But this is definitely adult/new adult as the story centers around the Prince of Akielos, whose father died and half-brother took the throne. Prince Damianos is sent to their “enemy” country as a slave to the Prince of VereThese kingdoms all use slaves, mostly for pleasure and sex. So be warned, if you are not prepared to read about sex, slavery and rape, don’t pick these up because those themes are definitely in this book. 

BOOK ONE

I had bought the first book on the Kindle app because I was intrigued. I started reading on Sunday afternoon, and couldn’t put it down. I finished it in a couple of hours, not only because it was addictive but also because it’s only about 240 pages. You start the book with the overthrowing of Prince Damianos, and he is immediately sent to Vere as a slave.

What is interesting to know about this world, is that while all countries use slaves for sex, they go about it differently. In Vere, everyone uses same-sex slaves. So men have male slaves, and women female. Why? To avoid getting a woman pregnant and having a bastard. In Akielos, you pretty much do what you want -and they have “medicine” to prevent pregnancy if wanted. In Vere, slaves are nothing -entirely submissive. In Akielos, being dominant or submissive is a sign of respect. You choose to be so, and you never lose who you are.

My main “problem” with this book is that it was so short. I feel like I would have enjoyed it even more if there was more time to flesh out the world and characters. As it is, you get thrown in, and have to figure it all out as you go. 

I feel a bit bad saying I enjoyed reading this, because the topics are so heavy. And you feel repulsed -often. But that’s the whole point of this trilogy! You aren’t meant to like the slavery or the rape (obviously). It confronts you with it though. 

From the first book, I loved Damen (Damianos’ slave name). He was strong, a true fighter. Someone to admire. I despised Laurent. Mostly because I couldn’t figure him out! What are his motives? Is he just some other version of Joffrey from Game of Thrones? Because you read this book from Damen’s point of view, it’s hard to figure out who Laurent really is. Is he really the nasty kid they say he is?

Like I said, I would have liked this book to be longer. But it was an interesting introduction into the world and characters. I felt uncomfortable and repulsed (rape, pedophilia? no thanks) at times, which is the whole point. I had to continue their story, and bought the second book minutes after finishing this one. 

BOOK TWO

I liked this book more than the first one, because it provides more of an insight into the characters and world. Especially Laurent. I feel like this is really the first time you get to know him, not just the perception of his character.

As I mentioned, I bought and started the second book minutes after finishing the first one. I just couldn’t let go! This story is so utterly addictive to me.

This novel has more political intrigue and scheming, which I always enjoy in a novel. You get to see more of the world than just the capital of Vere. You get to read about small villages, castles at the border, different kingdoms and even female tribes. It’s so intriguing! 

This is where I started liking Laurent more. Not that anything really excuses what he did in the first book, but you get more of a glimpse into his character. 

Just like with the first book, I finished this one and immediately purchased and started book #3. 

BOOK THREE

Because I had started book 1 in the afternoon, it was already late by the time I got to book 3. But I couldn’t stop reading, and couldn’t sleep without knowing how it would all end. So I stayed up until 1 AM to finish this book. I get up a little before 7, and my sleep is precious to me. Yet I gave it up, just to finish this trilogy. 

I think this may have been my favorite of them all? You see Damen and Laurent truly embrace who they are. To fight. I grew to love certain characters, and to hate others (more like despise, but okay). There is more political intrigue and scheming, and it’s truly hard to tell on whose side everyone stands! You start to question every single person’s motive. 

I wish I could’ve seen more of the ending, like an epilogue!


I was captivated (hihi, see what I did there) by this entire trilogy and couldn’t stop reading until I finished it all. You despise and love characters. You’ll change your mind. You’ll see that some things, while unforgivable, can’t be undone. You also know that some things just can’t be justified. You’ll question people’s motives, and what they really mean by their words or actions.