I did not regret it for a single second.
It's not that Serena is a former prostitute who doesn't have a single shred of shame or regret over how she lived her life before she came to manage the Arms, her inn. Though she doesn't, and her delicious love for the physical side of affection heated me through and through.
It's not that Solomon is a brilliant beta hero who reminds us the reader that you don't have to be an alphahole to have power over people. Though he does, and the descriptions of his ink stained fingers absolutely slayed me, as did his quiet joy in his work.
It's not the realistic and multicultural nature of the supporting cast, though that was fantastic and amazing, and I loved it.
It's not the swoon-worthy secondary relationship that had my heart all aflutter, though it did.
It's not that Serena was angry, and prickly, and afraid to let Solomon in, and that she didn't get magically fixed by his penis. It's not that the author had some amazing and brilliant and gorgeous things to say about homosexuality, and sexuality, and abuse, and love in general. It's not just that Lerner captured--as she said on Twitter--our angry, angry hearts in Lady Serena Ravenshaw.
It was that she did it all at once, pulling all of these threads together into a quilt of a book that I couldn't put down, a shockingly wonderful portrayal of everything that I love to read all in one book. I adored it.
This book does, in my opinion, get a few trigger warnings. A character discusses quite frankly his previous suicidal thoughts. There is suggestion of m/m scenes, though everything in that arena fades to black very quickly. There is a trouble history referenced with a character's father. There are some references to past domestic violence and rape threat situations.
All of these moments, however, felt very respectfully done to me. From Solomon's awkwardness to Serena's iron-clad walls to the mystery at the center of the book's plot, there was nothing I didn't love about this book. I hope there's quite a lot more, about René, and Sophy, and Solomon's sister. Basically, I want to go back to the Arms at some point in the future, and check on the friends I made in this book.
I really can't think of higher praise for any book, so there you are. As I'm writing this, A Lily Among Thorns is on sale for $0.99 on Kindle in the U.S. I really cannot think of a single reason for you not to buy it.