Saturday, June 25, 2016

THE BEAUTIFUL PRETENDER by Melanie Dickerson

After inheriting his title from his brother, the margrave has two weeks to find a noble bride. What will happen when he learns he has fallen for a lovely servant girl in disguise?
The Margrave of Thornbeck has to find a bride, fast. He invites ten noble born ladies who meet the king’s approval to be his guests at Thornbeck Castle for two weeks, a time to test these ladies and reveal their true character.
Avelina has only two instructions: keep her true identity a secret and make sure the margrave doesn’t select her as his bride. Since the latter seems unlikely, she concentrates on not getting caught. No one must know she is merely a maidservant, sent by the Earl of Plimmwald to stand in for his daughter, Dorothea.
Despite Avelina’s best attempts at diverting attention from herself, the margrave has taken notice. And try as she might, she can’t deny her own growing feelings. But something else is afoot in the castle. Something sinister that could have far worse—far deadlier—consequences.

Opinion:

Avelina is a lady's maid to the daughter of an Earl, but when she aids in her lady's elopement with a knight, she finds herself in a most precarious situation. The Margrave of the region is looking for a bride and thus he invited ten young eligible women, the Earl's daughter was to be one. With his daughter missing, the Earl insists Avelina take his daughter's place and ensure the Margrave does not choose her. And this is the premise of this historical fairy tale. Of course, the Margrave is drawn to Avelina despite her attempts to thwart his attention, making for good conflict. 

The author, Melanie Dickerson, is known for her medieval fairy tales. This is the first book of hers that I have read, irresistibly drawn to it because of the striking cover. The pace of the story really picked up in the second half, as did the romance and the accumulation of conflict.

This is pure escape fiction - a charming love story in the time of princes and princes and courtly love. Very enjoyable; light and airy too!

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Friday, June 24, 2016

AT THE EDGE OF SUMMER by Jessica Brockmole


The acclaimed author of Letters from Skye returns with an extraordinary story of a friendship born of proximity but boundless in the face of separation and war.

Luc Crépet is accustomed to his mother’s bringing wounded creatures to their idyllic château in the French countryside, where healing comes naturally amid the lush wildflowers and crumbling stone walls. Yet his maman’s newest project is the most surprising: a fifteen-year-old Scottish girl grieving over her parents’ fate. A curious child with an artistic soul, Clare Ross finds solace in her connection to Luc, and she in turn inspires him in ways he never thought possible. Then, just as suddenly as Clare arrives, she is gone, whisked away by her grandfather to the farthest reaches of the globe. Devastated by her departure, Luc begins to write letters to Clare—and, even as she moves from Portugal to Africa and beyond, the memory of the summer they shared keeps her grounded.
Years later, in the wake of World War I, Clare, now an artist, returns to France to help create facial prostheses for wounded soldiers. One of the wary veterans who comes to the studio seems familiar, and as his mask takes shape beneath her fingers, she recognizes Luc. But is this soldier, made bitter by battle and betrayal, the same boy who once wrote her wistful letters from Paris? After war and so many years apart, can Clare and Luc recapture how they felt at the edge of that long-ago summer?
Bringing to life two unforgettable characters and the rich historical period they inhabit, Jessica Brockmole shows how love and forgiveness can redeem us.

Opinion:

In this sweeping historical romance, the author introduced me to a memorable heroine named Clare and a charismatic, but disturbed hero named Luc. They came to know each other in France when Clare visits Madame Crepet. A shared love for art brought them together, but Clare's grandfather and then the Great World War tore them apart. 

I found it easy to love both the main characters. They each narrative throughout the story, so I was able to truly understand their inner motivations and emotions. The two correspond by letters that describe not only the sights and smells of their individual locations, but their deepest inner thoughs and reactions to the world around them. It is their shared passion for art that somehow brings the two friends back together. And it is then that the experience the devastation that time and separation have brought to their lives. This is a lovely story about friendship, loss, betrayal, and healing. 


Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Lady Of The Highway by Deborah Swift


PUBLISHER’S BLURB

England 1652
Seventeen-year-old Lady Katherine Fanshawe (Kate) has lost everything in the civil war that has torn England apart. Determined to build a community of friends, she invites Owen Whistler and the radical Diggers sect to make their home in her manor house.
When her stepfather unexpectedly returns, he evicts the Diggers with no pay, despite their months of labour on his land. Wilful, and determined to regain Owen’s trust, Kate has to repay her friends the only way she can – by turning to secret highway robbery.
But Kate is not the only one riding the highway at night, and her rival for the road is intent on bloodshed and murder. When he unleashes a reign of terror, Kate gets the blame. Will she be able to clear her name, and save the one person she loves from his lust for revenge?


REVIEW

In this third of a trilogy about Katherine Fanshawe, the royalists are finished and Cromwell has an iron hold on the country. Being on the wrong side has landed Ms Swift’s heroine into an impossible situation where starvation is a possibility and yet the alternative; to invite a group of Diggers to live in her empty house and work the land is a choice she comes to regret. It seems no one can forget their origins and hatred is too ingrained to reason away.

Her stepfather returns to England, and forced to comply with the worst of the Puritan faction, he plans to remove her to France to get away from the oppressive regime. This is the last thing Katherine wants, but how to defy her patriarch? Then things worsen even further when it’s suggested her unloved husband might be dead, making Katherine a bargaining chip for her worst enemy, the treacherous Downall.

Katherine is forced into a path which puts her into even more danger, but she doesn’t feel sorry for herself and does what is necessary. A worthy heroine who risks everything to pay a debt in a society where women like her have little to offer in the first place other than wealthy connections. Even her name is cursed.

This novel might be aimed at the young adult audience but it’s a thoroughly enjoyable story for any age. For those who don’t have extensive knowledge of the English Civil War, the story deals with the aftermath of the Cavaliers v Roundheads clearly and sympathetically. The ‘Highways’ stories are an essential addition to any historical novel collection.

Anita Davison author of ‘Royalist Rebel’ under the name Anita Seymour. The first in her Flora Maguire Edwardian Cosy Mystery series is scheduled for release in October 2016 by Head of Zeus Publishing.

Anita's Blog: http://thedisorganisedauthor.blogspot.


Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

THE PROGENY by Tosca Lee

New York Times bestselling author Tosca Lee brings a modern twist to an ancient mystery surrounding the most notorious female serial killer of all time. A fast-paced thriller for fans of Lee’s Books of Mortals series with Ted Dekker, Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, and BBC America’s hit series Orphan Black.

Emily Porter is the descendant of a serial killer. Now, she’s become the hunted. She’s on a quest that will take her to the secret underground of Europe and the inner circles of three ancient orders—one determined to kill her, one devoted to keeping her alive, and one she must ultimately save. Filled with adrenaline, romance, and reversals, The Progeny is the present-day saga of a 400-year-old war between the uncanny descendants of “Blood Countess” Elizabeth Bathory, the most prolific female serial killer of all time, and a secret society dedicated to erasing every one of her descendants. A story about the search for self amidst centuries-old intrigues and Europe’s underground scene…and one woman’s mission to survive.


Opinion:

I can best describe this book as dark and rich. Countess Elizabeth Bathory from the 17th century is an ancestor of Emily Porter. A powerful and secret sect hunts down and kills all descendants of the notorious serial killer. Emily has learned a dark secret and in order to protect her life and those she loves, she has had her memory completely erased. When she awakens, she knows nothing and no one from her past. But those from her past still know her. Luka and Rolan are two men who reveal they know of her past. But how does she know how to trust them? Are they truly her friends or do they work for the powerful sect determined to kill her?
I cannot classify this novel as historical fiction as it is completely set in our contemporary era. Only the background information pertaining to Elizabeth Bathory is historical in nature. So reading this novel is a departure from a historical reader like me. I have to admit that this novel had me enthralled. I couldn't figure out who to trust or how to interpret the plot until the very end. Be prepared, because the book ends with a definite cliffhanger which had me clamoring for more. A definite thriller with a fascinating plot that kept me reading to the very end. Looking forward to the sequel. 
Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

ELIZA WAITE by Ashley E. Sweeney

After the tragic death of her husband and son on a remote island in Washington’s San Juan Islands, Eliza Waite joins the throng of miners, fortune hunters, business owners, con men, and prostitutes traveling north to the Klondike in the spring of 1898. 

When Eliza arrives in Skagway, Alaska, she has less than fifty dollars to her name and not a friend in the world―but with some savvy, and with the help of some unsavory characters, Eliza opens a successful bakery on Skagway’s main street and befriends a madam at a neighboring bordello. Occupying this space―a place somewhere between traditional and nontraditional feminine roles―Eliza awakens emotionally and sexually. But when an unprincipled man from her past turns up in Skagway, Eliza is fearful that she will be unable to conceal her identity and move forward with her new life. Using Gold Rush history, diary entries, and authentic pioneer recipes, Eliza Waite transports readers to the sights sounds, smells, and tastes of a raucous and fleeting era of American history.

OPINION:

Within this mesmerizing cover is a though-provoking tale about a woman who struggles to overcome adversity resulting from the hardships and poverty and loss that has plagued her life. Eliza Waite is poor, alone in the world, and running from a horrendous past. Her tragic past makes her a compelling character.
The first part of the novel takes place on the San Juan Islands where she earns a living from the land. It is a life of hardship and constant work simply to exist. The latter part of the book takes the reader on a journey to Skagway Alaska with its chaotic economy and colorful character. Eliza struggles to adapt to her new environment. Slowly, not only does she adapt, but she is victorious in changing her life as she discovers her spirit and resilience. 
Written in a lovely, flowing style, it was an enjoyable book describing a fascinating era in American history. Highly recommended. 
Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

DAWN AT EMBERWILDE by Sarah E Ladd

Isabel Creston never dared to dream that love could be hers. Now, at the edge of a forest filled with dark secrets, she faces a fateful choice between love and duty.
For as long as she can remember, beautiful and free-spirited Isabel has strained against the rules and rigidity of the Fellsworth School in the rolling English countryside. No longer a student, Isabel set her sights on a steady role as a teacher at the school, a safe yet stifling establishment that would enable her to care for her younger sister Lizzie, who was left in her care after her father’s death. The unexpected arrival of a stranger with news of unknown relatives turns Isabel’s small, predictable world upside down, sweeping her and her young charge into a labyrinth of intrigue and hidden motives.At her new family’s invitation, Isabel and Lizzie relocate to Emberwilde, a sprawling estate adjacent to a vast, mysterious wood rife with rumors and ominous folklore—along with whispers of something far more sinister. Perhaps even more startling, two handsome men begin pursuing Isabel, forcing her to learn the delicate dance between attraction, the intricate rules of courtship, and the hopes of her heart. At Emberwilde Isabel will discover that the key to unlocking the mystery of her past may also open the door to her future and security. But first she must find it—in the depths of Emberwilde Forest.
  • Electronic File Size: 2138 KB
  • Print Length: 348 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 10, 2016)
  • Publication Date: May 10, 2016
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Christian Publishing

Opinion:
It is no secret that I am a big fan of a line of books published by Thomas Nelson Publishers and HarperCollins Christian Publishing. They always come with spectacular covers, wonderfully rich storylines, and terrific authors. Although there is always a romantic thread going through each novel, it is only a secondary element. These books have class, enduring plots, and characters that bloom from every page. Dawn at Emberwilde by Sarah E Ladd is one such book. Although it is the second book in a series, you do not have to read Book One to fully grasp and enjoy this novel.

I loved this novel. It's set in England's Regency period. The story unfolds at a very steady pace, always tantalizing me to read further. Reading was like a discovery of secrets and characters and a very enjoyable experience. There is plenty to laud - a smuggling mystery, a meddling aunto, an enigmatic strong hero, life adversity, and wonderfully evolving secondary characters.


Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

CHILDREN OF EARTH AND SKY by Guy Gavriel Kay


A book, set in a world inspired by the conflicts and dramas of Renaissance Europe. Against this tumultuous backdrop the lives of men and women unfold on the borderlands—where empires and faiths collide.
 
From the small coastal town of Senjan, notorious for its pirates, a young woman sets out to find vengeance for her lost family. That same spring, from the wealthy city-state of Seressa, famous for its canals and lagoon, come two very different people: a young artist traveling to the dangerous east to paint the grand khalif at his request—and possibly to do more—and a fiercely intelligent, angry woman, posing as a doctor’s wife, but sent by Seressa as a spy. The trading ship that carries them is commanded by the accomplished younger son of a merchant family, ambivalent about the life he’s been born to live. And farther east a boy trains to become a soldier in the elite infantry of the khalif—to win glory in the war everyone knows is coming. As these lives entwine, their fates—and those of many others—will hang in the balance, when the khalif sends out his massive army to take the great fortress that is the gateway to the western world...

Opinion:

This is a terrific read and I loved the fact it was set in the Renaissance period, one of my favorite historical periods. The world is beautifully imagined with numerous characters, both political and regular citizenry - military and religious leaders, priestesses, farmers, and many, many more. Because of the number of characters, it required a bit more concentration to keep track of them, and I did not bond well with any of them, but the storytelling and plot overshadowed this fact to make the book well worth reading. The author's writing is flowing and easy to fall into, seamlessly moving from one scene to another. The plot brought out my emotions as I read - shock, sadness, anger. The story is definitely plot driven rather than character driven, with plenty of action and twists. This was the first book by this author that I have read, and I definitely am interested in reading more. Definitely recommended for fantasy lovers.

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

DAUGHTER OF THE WOLF by Victoria Whitworth

DAUGHTER OF THE WOLF is set during the Dark Ages in an England ruled by rival kings. 

Among the lords who serve them is Radmer of Donmouth, the King's Wolf, guardian of the estuary gateway to Northumbria. When the king sends Radmer on a mission to Rome, Donmouth is left in the safekeeping of his only daughter, Elfrun, whose formidable grandmother wants her to take the veil, while treacherous Tilmon of Illingham covets her for his son. This is the story of daughters in a man's world. Wynn, determined to take over from her father, the smith; Saethryth, wilful daughter of the village steward, whose longing for passion will set off a tragic sequence of events; and Auli, whose merchant venturer father plies his trade up and down the coast, spying for the Danes. Above all, it is the story of Elfrun of Donmouth, uncertain of her father's fate, no knowing whom she can trust, or whom she can love. 

Opinion:

Four women from different social ranks are at the heart of this Dark Ages tale set in England: Saethryth the steward's daughter, Wynn the blacksmith's daughter, Auli the spy's daughter, and Elfrun who is the daughter of the Wolf. When Elfrun's father is sent to Rome on a mission by the king, Donmouth estate is left in her hands. Young and inexperienced, she does her best to govern, despite the pressure her grandmother puts upon her to enter a convent and take the veil. At the same time, a dangerous man returns to the community, and he wants to wed his son to her. As time passes, Elfrun does not know her father's fate, but she is determined to keep the estate and all the people in her care in good standing. 
Author Victoria Whitworth did an exceptional job of bringing to life the hardships of the Dark Ages, and the plight of women during that time. Unique scenes such as the whale harvest made for a fascinating read. The characters and their inter-relationships to each other were beautifully fleshed out, along with the intriguing setting, and an ending that was utterly satisfying. A medieval novel that is sure to keep you flipping pages until the end. Highly recommended. 
Thank you to the publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

THE HOUSE OF WIVES by Simon Choa-Johnston

Two women compete for the affections of their opium merchant husband in a tale of friendship, fortune and rivalry in colonial Hong Kong.

  • eBook Size: 1230 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Canada
  • Publication Date: May 3, 2016

In 1862, a young Jew from Calcutta named Emanuel Belilios leaves his dutiful wife Semah and sets sail for Hong Kong to make his fortune in the opium trade. There, he grows into a prosperous and respectable merchant, eventually falling in love with his Chinese business partner's daughter Pearl, a delicate beauty twenty years his junior. As a wedding present, he builds for her the most magnificent mansion in Hong Kong. Then Semah arrives unannounced from Calcutta to take her place as mistress of the house...and life will change irrevocably for all of them. 
Inspired by the lives of Choa-Johnston's ancestors, The House of Wives is an unforgettable novel about the machinations of the early opium trade, and about two remarkable women determined to secure a dynasty for their children in the tumultuous British Crown colony.

OPINION:

A fascinating plot based on the author's own family lore - two women, one English, and the other Chinese, share one husband and live under the same roof. 
The author wrote the novel is such a way that the reader does not blame, but rather can sympathize with the husband and his two wives. Each of them is wonderfully portrayed with their own rational thoughts, choices, and feelings which lent credence to their plight. 


Beyond the family drama, the author did an exceptional job of relaying the historical details of the opium trade with all its intrigues, wealth, and associated crime. Life in Hong Kong during that era was also vibrantly recreated. Although the pacing sometimes slowed, the entire novel was beautifully written with a gentle and easy to read prose. I very much enjoyed reading the author's personal notes at the end of the book which described his own family history.  

This book would initiate very interesting discussions for book groups. For fans of historical fiction who want an exotic setting weaved into an intricate plot, then this is the book to read. Truly fascinating from start to finish.

y unique and different solution to his multiple wife issue which was quite different than how others had handled similar situations during that time and makes for a very unique story. Choa-Johnston's writing was quite descriptive in regards to the era and cultures and I appreciated that he included a description of his family history at the back of the book to give his readers more background information. Overall, this was a good read. It was an interesting look at different cultures, the author's unique family history and the power and strength of women.

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Penguin Group - Random House Publishing for providing me with a complimentary paperback copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.


Thank you to Penguin Group - Random House Publishig for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Friday, June 3, 2016

A FINE IMITATION by Amber Brock

Set in the glamorous 1920s, A Fine Imitation is an intoxicating debut that sweeps readers into a privileged Manhattan socialite's restless life and the affair with a mysterious painter that upends her world, flashing back to her years at Vassar and the friendship that brought her to the brink of ruin.

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Crown
  • Release: May 3, 2016

Synopsis:  Vera Bellington has beauty, pedigree, and a penthouse at The Angelus--the most coveted address on Park Avenue. But behind the sparkling social whirl, Vera is living a life of quiet desperation. Her days are an unbroken loop of empty, champagne-soaked socializing, while her nights are silent and cold, spent waiting alone in her cavernous apartment for a husband who seldom comes home. Then Emil Hallan arrives at The Angelus to paint a mural above its glittering subterranean pool. The handsome French artist moves into the building, shrouds his work in secrecy, and piques Vera's curiosity, especially when the painter keeps dodging questions about his past. Is he the man he claims to be? Even as she finds herself increasingly drawn to Hallan's warmth and passion, Vera can't suppress her suspicions. After all, she has plenty of secrets, too--and some of them involve art forgers like her bold, artistically talented former friend, Bea, who years ago, at Vassar, brought Vera to the brink of catastrophe and social exile. When the dangerous mysteries of Emil's past are revealed, Vera faces an impossible choice--whether to cling to her familiar world of privilege and propriety or to risk her future with the enigmatic man who has taken her heart. A Fine Imitation explores what happens when we realize that the life we've always led is not the life we want to have.

Opinion:

A Fine Imitation" is many things - a romance, a study of loneliness, an examination of social expectations and much more. Set in the 1920's in New York, we are introduced to a socialite whose husband is so busy she feels abandoned, bored, lonely. The story unfolds with a narrative that switches between current time and the protagonists earlier life as a college student. There are some fascinating characters too - a dull husband obsessed with his work, a strict overbearing mother, and a mysteriously handsome but eccentric artist. Most of all, there is a hidden theme that all that glitters is not gold and that often we find ourselves leading lives according to others and not of our own devise. A great, thought-provoking novel that gathers momentum as the story moves along. An excellent recommendation for women's book clubs. 

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

THE PAINTER OF SOULS by Philip Kazan

An extraordinary story of passion, art, and intrigue, this novel journeys to a time and place in Italy where desire reigns supreme―and salvation is found in the strangest of places.

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Pegasus Books
  • Release: May 3, 2016

Synopsis: Beauty can be a gift―or a wicked temptation. So it is for Filippo Lippi, growing up in Renaissance Florence. He has a talent―not only can he see the beauty in everything, he can capture it, paint it. But while beauty can seduce you and art can transport you―it cannot always feed you or protect you. To survive, Pippo Lippi, orphan, street urchin, budding rogue, must first become Fra Filippo Lippi: Carmelite friar, man of God. His life will take him down two paths at once. He will become a gambler, a forger, a seducer of nuns; and at the same time he will be the greatest painter of his time, the teacher of Botticelli and the confidante of the Medicis. So who is he really―lover, believer, father, teacher, artist? Is anything true except the paintings?

Opinion:
Journey to Florence for a lovely introduction to the life of Renaissance artist Fra Filipo Lippi! Author Philip Kazan has re-imagined the life of this famous painter, adding fascinating little twists and quirks of personality. Nicely written, in an easy-to-read style, sometimes in-your-face blunt style, it was easy to fall utterly into the story complete with all the sites and smells of Renaissance Italy. The author uses a first person present style of writing that makes the tale seem more current and vivid. I especially liked Fra Lippo's imperfections. Yes, he is a monk or friar, but can be a little scandalous in his behavior. As a reader, I was treated to visual descriptions of grand cathedrals and churches, other historical persons of the time, and wonderful artistic practices and techniques. This book is the first in a series and deal with the artists earlier life. I definitely look forward to reading the book in the series. Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.

THE NIGHT WANDERER by Alys Clare

Eleventh century Cambridge is rocked by a series of brutal murders!

  • Series: An Aelf Fen Mystery (Book 7)
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Publishers
  • Release: June 1, 2016

Synopsis:  Called out to attend a body found on a lonely stretch of river bank, its throat torn out, apprentice healer Lassair is sceptical of the sheriff’s verdict that this was the result of a wild animal attack. But when a second body is discovered, similarly mutilated, rumours engulf the town that the legendary demon known as the Night Wanderer has returned to wreak havoc. Determined to stop the fear spreading and prove that the killer is human, Lassair and lawman Jack Chevestrier investigate. If they could only find out what links the victims, they would be one step closer to discovering the Night Wanderer’s identity – and what it is he really wants. But when the killer turns his sights on Lassair herself, can she survive long enough to find out?

Opinion:

Medieval and Mystery! Two of my favourite things all wrapped up in an intriguing novel by Alys Clare. I have heard about this author and her medieval series, but this is the first opportunity I've had to read one of her books. The story takes place in 11th century Norman England in Cambridge. Some sort of dark creature is violently murdering innocent victims by viciously tearing out their throats with no apparent motive. The two main protaganists are a young woman healer named Lassair and a lawman named Jack Chevestrier. Togther they set out to stop the killer and unravel the mystery. 

This novel has a touch of paranormal with mysticism and magic. It's dark in nature with lots of twists and turns that kept me interested and reading to the end. Although it is the 7th book in a series, I did not have to read the previous books to appreciate this book. Nice prose, easily read, and lots of intrigue makes this a good book to cozy up to.  

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.