Here is the summary of the book:
Only I saw Narian for who he truly was: a young man with courage and an independent mind, and made to pay for what was outside his control. He couldn't help his past any more than he could help the way those intense, deep-blue eyes pierced me and held me captive. An eighteen-year-old queen in love with the enemy as their countries pass the point of no return... Bound to a man she cannot love, Queen Alera of Hytanica must forget Narian, the young man who holds her heart. For Narian is destined to conquer Hytanica at the behest of his master, the powerful magic-user known as the Overlord. Alera doesn't truly believe Narian will fight against Hytanica-until Cokyrian troops attack with Narian commanding the charge. Faced with the greatest betrayal a heart can know, Alera must set aside personal feelings and lead her kingdom through its darkest time. And when all hope, will and courage seem lost, she must find strength and remember that even the blackest night must have a dawn....
Historical romances always have a way of reminding us of times past, of the age of courting, of the age of gowns and corsets, of knights and the monarchy. It is this age where our story is set. Two warring factions, Hytanica and Cokyri. At war because of a stupid and vain mistake on the former's part.
Allegiance begins shortly after the first book Legacy ended (check review here). Alera is now in a marriage which she never desires with Steldor about to be crowned king and queen of Hytanica. For her heart is with Narian. In a land where men reign supreme, it is but expected to that Alera was not able to intervene or buy sometime to think things through. When your heart is with another it is impossible to stay in a marriage where there is no love.
Cokyri now has Narian and are pulling all the stops to take over Hytanica and avenge the decades old insult. In all this Alera still has eyes for only Narian(rather unfair to her husband) knows who he really is. Only she knows where his true loyalties lie but what will she do when she realizes that Narian is the enemy this time and her people must come first and not a love that was never meant to be.
Allegiance really turned the table on Steldor for me. Steldor in the first book appeared to be rude and disrespectful and rather snobbish but here we see him in an unhappy and a one sided marriage. By social hierarchy Steldor has the right to lord over his wife, would be rather petulant when his goals are not reached. While he may love her, Alera doesn't. A loosing battle in the end for the young king.
Alera for her part can't seem to connect to the idea of being the queen and having Steldor as a husband. The tension between them added flavor to the story. She clearly doesn't want Steldor but also can't seem to evade his charm...a rather very difficult situation. It can clearly be seen that Steldor was trying to be very patient with Alera and trying to wait for her to come around with her shunning him. But the one thing that felt irritating was that in dangerous situations (not going to name them as they will spoil the story) all Alera does is think if Narian loves her or not. Well why not, two hot guys want her - Steldor and Narian, it is within her right to be a little irritating. Narian on the other while not physically present all the time throughout the book has his presence felt.
On the whole plot and scenario are well written. The characters while a little confused are pretty strong and very much more linked with the plot points. A lot of questions that rose in the first book Legacy are also answered in this book. This book improved on the first one greatly. Allegiance had a fairly darker feel than the first book and with so much going on, the drama, politics, kingdom bench marking, violence and such you can definitely not evade the attraction towards this book but now that I have read this book I seriously want to read the next one in the trilogy "Sacrifice". I'll let you in on a secret there is also the prologue of the third book provided at the end of the book that definitely sets you up for what is to come.
"Dark and engrossing - Hytanica faces its ultimate enemy in battle head held high but can they survive!"