Friday, March 20, 2015

New Review: Elizabeth English’s THE LINNET – Unusual Borderlands Romance with an Irish hero

This is book 3 in the trilogy about the Darnleys and the Kirallens. Set in the borderlands between Scotland and England in 1379, this is the story of Lady Maude Darnley, who when she was 14, suffered a horrible attack and ever since has suppressed the truth (even to herself) beneath a cold exterior. But at 21, she is barely holding herself together. Meanwhile, her father has been consumed with taking revenge on their enemies, the Kirallens, whose raid brought about the horrible event.

An Irishman named Ronan Fitzgerald, who is a taibhsear (a healer and a seer, and in his case, also a bard), is dispatched by his teacher (who is aware of the facts but is sworn to secrecy) to Lord Darnley to offer his services. Ronan carries his own baggage from the past and knows nothing of his mission, but soon realizes that Lady Maude needs his help. He is patient and as they enjoy their music, she slowly begins to reveal her past and the horrible event that changed everything. But can the horrible event of the past and the terrible revenge it produced be made to come right?

This is a very different historical romance. It is really the story of one woman’s struggle back from a horrible event to find love in the arms of her healer (a patient falling in love with her therapist, if you will). And Ronan, an insightful and gentle man, finds the woman who can hold his heart. Both are complex characters. It’s a well-told, intricately woven story, but likely not for everyone. The medieval stage is well set though there is not much history here, just the warring families on the border.

It can be read as a stand alone story though there are references to earlier happenings and other characters.

The Darnleys & Kirallens:

The Border Bride
Laird of the Mist
The Linnet

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