Monday, January 30, 2023

Kicking off the new year with a great book! The Rose and the Thistle by Laura Frantz


Book Summary (Amazon): In 1715, Lady Blythe Hedley's father is declared an enemy of the British crown because of his Jacobite sympathies, forcing her to flee her home in northern England. Secreted to the tower of Wedderburn Castle in Scotland, Lady Blythe awaits who will ultimately be crowned king. But in a house with seven sons and numerous servants, her presence soon becomes known.

No sooner has Everard Hume lost his father, Lord Wedderburn, than Lady Hedley arrives with the clothes on her back and her mistress in tow. He has his own problems--a volatile brother with dangerous political leanings, an estate to manage, and a very young brother in need of comfort and direction in the wake of losing his father. It would be best for everyone if he could send this misfit heiress on her way as soon as possible.

Drawn into a whirlwind of intrigue, shifting alliances, and ambitions, Lady Blythe must be careful whom she trusts. Her fortune, her future, and her very life are at stake. Those who appear to be adversaries may turn out to be allies--and those who pretend friendship may be enemies.

My thoughts...At the finish of this novel, I was doing all of the sighing. There were so many things I loved about it. I loved the hero-- certainly swoon-worthy. Brave and honorable, he was the perfect counterpart to the heroine, Blythe. While described as plain and highly intelligent, I love that Frantz expertly wove the two opposites into a beautiful--believable--love story, with the backdrop of political intrigue that was happening in 18th century England, France, and Scotland. 

Laura Frantz' has an amazing ability to create and build tension. While the first half of the novel was a little slower than the last half, it was setting the scene of the building rebelling between the religious and political groups of the day. It was intriguing to gain a little understanding of all that was happening historically. Add two fictional characters caught in the middle of it all, trying to navigate how to survive and live peaceably, it added another layer to the plot. Laura also expertly wrote the slow burn romantic tension that I love! Using beautiful descriptive language, it had all of the romantic feelings without venturing behind closed doors. That is quite a feat and I enjoyed every moment of it! While I love the history, I'm really here for the romance! : )

I received a complimentary of this book from the publisher in order to share my honest review, which I did. I highly recommend this beautifully written novel by Laura Frantz!