Sunday 17 November 2019

BLOG TOUR: The Raided Heart - Jennifer C. Wilson

As a fan of historical fiction, I have been hearing about this much-anticipated book for quite some time so it is my absolute pleasure to take part in the Rachel's Random Resources blog tour for The Raided Heart by Jennifer C. Wilson.  Not only do you get to read my review of this fabulous book, but you also get the chance to win an e-copy of The Last Plantagenet?, which I absolutely LOVED.  So make sure you scroll down to enter the giveaway after reading my review.

Meg Mathers, the headstrong youngest sibling of a reiving family on the English-Scottish border, is determined to remain at her childhood home, caring for the land and village she’s grown up with. When an accident brings her a broken ankle and six weeks in the resentful company of ambitious and angry young reiver Will Hetherington, attraction starts to build. Both begin to realise they might have met their match, and the love of their lives, but 15th century border living is not that simple, as Meg soon finds herself betrothed to the weakling son of a tyrannical neighbour, Alexander Gray. When tragedy strikes, can Meg and Will find their way back to each other, and can Will finally take his own personal revenge on Gray?

What did I think?

I am a huge fan of Jennifer C. Wilson's Kindred Spirits series so I couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy of The Raided Heart; a book that I have been hearing about at my local book group.  The Raided Heart is a historical romance, so don't expect any famous ghosts to appear although there is mention of a famous figure from history but more about that later.  

You can't live in Northern England without having heard of the border reivers but for those new to the subject, Jennifer C. Wilson has included a little explanation of key definitions at the start of the book.  This is invaluable to understand what is going on in the book; I had never heard of a bastle or hot and cold trods.  There is also a cast of characters, although I was happy to meet them as the story unfolded.  I did have a little chuckle at the cast when I saw Richard, Duke of Gloucester listed; I know enough of my Plantagenet history to recognise Richard III when I see him.  Of course, it wouldn't be a Jennifer C. Wilson book without Richard! 

Before starting the book, I did worry a little about the 'romance' part of it.  Would it be too Mills and Boon for me?  Thankfully, not!  There are no heaving bosoms or throbbing loins, it's more about the feelings growing between Meg and Will.  I think the romance part was perfectly proportioned with the historical element, as it's more the history that I am interested in but the romance helps to bring it more to life.

The story itself has many threads running through it which make it a very multi-dimensional read.  I really enjoyed Will's story and his link to Alexander Gray which felt like a simmering pot left to boil on the stove.  I also loved how close Meg's family are and how her brothers treat her as an equal and value her opinion; it made it all the more difficult for Meg to become a simpering wife and her struggle was often comical as the reader is party to her thoughts.

The Raided Heart is an outstanding story; the historical setting is vividly described and the characters are so well developed that they virtually jump out of the page.  I know Jennifer C. Wilson has been working on The Raided Heart for quite some time and I am delighted to say that it is well worth the wait.  

I chose to read an ARC and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating:

Buy it from:
Amazon UK
Amazon US

About the author:

Jennifer C. Wilson is a marine biologist by training, who developed an equal passion for history and historical fiction whilst stalking Mary, Queen of Scots on childhood holidays (she has since moved on to Richard III). Enrolling on an adult education workshop on her return to the north-east of England for work reignited her pastime of creative writing, and she has been filling notebooks ever since. In 2014, Jennifer won the Story Tyne short story competition, and has been working on a number of projects since, including co-hosting the North Tyneside Writers’ Circle. Her Kindred Spirits novels are published by Crooked Cat Books and her time-slip novella, The Last Plantagenet?, by Ocelot Press. She lives in North Tyneside, and is very proud of her approximately 2-inch sea view.

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Giveaway to Win 2 x e-copies of The Last Plantagenet? (Open Internationally)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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