A Brother’s Price by Wen Spencer tells the story of Jerin Whistler, a humble subject of the fantasy kingdom of Queensland.
In Queensland, over 90% of the population is female, and men are seen as rare prizes, and valuable commodities to be bought and traded by families that wish to continue their bloodline by having one man marry all the women of the family.
Jerin has 27 sisters, and one of his younger sisters one day drives off a gang of criminals who are attacking a single rider.
They bring the lone, female rider to their family home only to find out she is a princess, and they are now tangled in a web of treason.
Not only is Jerin confronted with his secretive family history, but now has the fate of the whole nation on his shoulders.
This novel crosses many boundaries of genre and has been particularly praised for subverting traditional gender roles.
The novel is partially speculative fiction, but also blends low fantasy with sci-fi, and despite the fantastical setting and the presence of a monarchy, it has also been compared to a western.
Due to its emphasis on Jerin finding a female suitor, it has also been called a gender-flipped, fantasy homage to the works of Jane Austen.
If you love A Brother’s Price, then you’ll thoroughly enjoy books like Finders Keepers, The Shards Of Honor Series, The Last Herald Mage Trilogy, Valor’s Choice, and the Sianim Series.
Themes In A Brother’s Price
Since the novel takes place in a world where there are far more women than men, men are seen as rare prizes to be won, and take on domestic roles while women go off and fight.
A Brother’s Price holds a mirror up to the typical gender roles in our society, inverts them, and makes us question them.
Many readers have also commented on how the protagonist, Jerin, is portrayed the same way as a female protagonist in a typical romantic novel, especially when it comes to the subject of marriage.
As one of the main plot threads concerns Jerin being married off to a family of women to procreate and raise their children, romance and marriage are notable themes in the novel, especially as who Jerin marries has big consequences for the fate of his family and his country.
When Jerin’s family discovers the princess who they rescued from attackers, it tips over a can of worms regarding their family history.
As Jerin is the only boy out of 27 sisters this also weaves into themes of family tension, and family bonds.
Books Like A Brother’s Price
Finders Keepers By Linnea Sinclair
Trilby Elliot is a lone wolf, an independent trader who is minding her own business modifying her starfreighter when a strange man crash lands on the otherwise uninhabited planet of Avanar in a busted up ‘Sko fighter.
Trilby discovered that this strange man – Rhis Vanur – is a Zafharin military officer, whose army has been at war with the ‘Sko for years.
While Trilby initially writes Rhis off as an arrogant Zafharin, she soon grows fond of him and is disappointed to learn that – while she found him – she can’t keep him, given her perceived lowly status as a woman existing outside the law.
She turns down his offer to assist her until she discovers her best friend is missing and that she and Rhis are being targeted by the ‘Sko. She now has to form an unlikely team with the fallen military officer.
Where to buy the book: Finders Keepers by Linnea Sinclair
- Many readers have favorably compared the novel to Star Wars.
- Enjoyable, believable romance.
- The world-building has been widely praised.
- Some readers did find the pacing lacking.
Themes Similar To A Brother’s Price: Feminism, romance, science fiction, and alternate reality.
Shards Of Honor (The Vorkosigan Saga) By Lois McMaster-Bujold
Written by Nebula Award and Hugo Award-winning writer Lois McMaster-Bujold, The Vorkosigan Saga tells the story of Cordelia and Aral.
Shards Of Honor is the first installment in the saga.
Cordelia Naismith is taken prisoner by Aral Vorkosigian, the commander of a Barrayan ship that attacked Cordelia and her survey crew.
Through overcoming numerous trials and mishaps, Cordelia and Aral grow closer and develop strong feelings for each other.
Where to buy the book: Shards Of Horror By Lois McMaster-Bujold.
- Excellent world-building.
- Rich characterization.
- Readers have praised the romance between the main characters.
- Some readers found the plot to be too complicated.
Themes Similar To A Brother’s Price: Gender roles, romance, politics, and science fiction.
Last Herald Mage Trilogy By Mercedes Lackey
The Last Herald Mage Trilogy is a Lambda Award-winning series of books by Mercedes Lackey.
They tell the story of Vanyel, the son of a Valdemaran noble who is abused and persecuted before he finds acceptance at Haven, where he meets Yfandes, a magical, equine creature who can bond and telepathically communicate with their chosen one. In this case, Vanyel.
However, Vanyel doesn’t just discover Yfandes at Haven, he discovers love and acceptance and must fight to keep it.
Where to buy the book: Last Herald Mage Trilogy
- The trilogy has been praised for the quality of its writing, particularly its imagery.
- Characters go through believable development throughout the trilogy.
- The protagonist, Vanyel is homosexual, and the trilogy has been praised for its LGBT representation.
- Some readers found the pacing rather slow.
Themes Similar To A Brother’s Price: Gender roles, romance, fantasy, and being an outsider.
Valor’s Choice By Tanya Huff
Torin Kerr is a no-nonsense staff sergeant who has had plenty of experience in battle.
She and her platoon are about to go on hard-earned leave when they’re unceremoniously called upon for a supposedly easy mission as the honor guard for a diplomatic visit to Silsviss, a world that exists outside the Confederation.
While there have been rumors floating around that the Others – enemies of the Confederation – have been spotted in this area, Torin writes them off as fruitless rumors she has heard countless times before.
She’s just focused on recruiting the Silsviss into the Confederation. For a while, everything goes smoothly… perhaps even too smoothly.
Where to buy the book: Valor’s Choice
- Readers have praised the empowering female protagonist.
- Exciting, fast-paced plot.
- Realistic portrayal of the military – despite being in a sci-fi setting – which readers have attributed to Huff’s time in the military.
- While readers have praised the world-building, some readers found it so complex that a map on the first page of the book would have been helpful.
Themes Similar To A Brother’s Price: Gender roles, female empowerment, and science fiction.
Sianim Series By Patricia Briggs
Written by #1 New York Times bestselling author, Patricia Briggs’ career was kick-started by the thrilling Sianim Series.
Aralorn is a girl who is raised in an oppressive, noble family who wants nothing more than to stifle who she is.
However, she runs away and leaves behind her birthright to become a mercenary spy and live a life of adventure.
Where to buy the book: The Sianim Series
- Intriguing, complex villain.
- Many readers have praised the writing of the series.
- Interesting, empowering female protagonist.
- Some readers were underwhelmed by the dialogue.
Themes Similar To A Brother’s Price: Fantasy, politics, freedom, spies, and gender roles.
While A Brother’s Price is primarily considered a romantic fantasy novel, it has also been referred to as sci-fi, and even a Western, so when it comes to finding similar books to read, you have plenty to choose from!
If you like novels with female protagonists who don’t conform to traditional gender roles and defy expectations placed on them by society, you’ll love tough loner Trilby in Finders, Keepers, adventurous Aralorn in the Sianim Series, or competent, brave Torin in Valor’s Choice.
If you’re into ‘chosen-one’ type narratives with protagonists who are shunned as outsiders before finding acceptance in a new land, then you’ll love the Last Herald Mage trilogy and its protagonist Vanyel – especially if you’re also looking for fantasy novels with great LGBT representation.
Meanwhile, for a blend of romance and sci-fi, we recommend the Vorkosigan Saga, especially if you enjoy enemies-to-lovers type narratives.
We hope our recommendations have piqued your interest, and that we’ve helped you discover a book you’ll love just as much as A Brother’s Price.
Many of our selections are also trilogies and sagas, so you could be stumbling upon your newest book obsession! Happy reading!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Awards Has Wen Spencer Won?
Spencer won the Sapphire Award for Best Science Fiction Romance in 2003 for her novel Tinker and was a finalist for the Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award for Fantasy Novel.
What Genre Does Wen Spencer Mainly Write?
Wen specializes in mainly fantasy and science fiction novels that are known for their unique, well-drawn characters with extraordinary powers, and rich, detailed world-building.
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