Reviews * Giveaway
From Ash and Stone by Julie Daines
Lady Margaret Grey of Hartfell wants for nothing. The daughter of a knight, she has a loving family, wealth, and even a secret romance with the blacksmith's son. But all that is torn from her one fateful night when her home is attacked and her family killed. She is left with nothing but bitterness, an unwavering mistrust of men, and a strange and mysterious curse that allows her to feel the thoughts of anyone who touches her.
Now, after six years away, Margaret is returning home for one reason: revenge. She hopes that by avenging her family's deaths, she will somehow be freed from her curse. But it won't be easy. The identities of the raiders are still unknown, she has little left to her name, and traveling alone in the Northumbrian hills during the border wars is dangerous. Matters are further complicated by handsome Angus Robson, a Scotsman whose charm threatens to distract her from her plans. But the raiders are closer than she knows, and Margaret soon realizes that what she believed to be a curse may be the key to finding those she seeks. One touch will reveal the truth.
I have yet to read a book from Julie Daines that I haven't loved, and this book is no exception. She has a way of drawing the reader into the story right away and keeping your attention the whole time. Margaret was so much fun to get to know. Very head-strong - as she needed to be, based on her life over the past six years. She has one thing on her mind, and nothing else matters. Despite her repeated attempts to tell Angus to pound sand, he keeps coming back. I admire his persistence. :) As in other books from this author, I felt so heartbroken for Margaret and her situation. Not only was she letting her hatred of the reivers poison her heart, but due to something completely beyond her control, she was unable to let herself get too close to anyone.
I was both intrigued and disgusted at the description of the reiving, as well as the torture methods that they used for punishment back in those days. While I had never heard of reiving before, I have heard of the torture methods, but it's still hard to wrap my brain around the fact that people can be so awful to those around them. I also really need to look up what a kirtle is, because it's mentioned in several of Julie's books and I only think I might kind of know what it is.
I really enjoyed getting to know Osanna and Ellis as well. Their backstories were intriguing and helped enhance the main story. This book is definitely going on my keeper shelf.
Julie Daines did a great job with her latest medieval novel, From Ash and Stone. My attention was caught right off and held throughout the story.
I really liked the characters. Margaret was not at all like the other ladies of her time. Everything she'd been through made her such a strong, independent woman. Although she was burdened with a desire for revenge, quite often we saw moments of her good heart. I loved her interactions with the other characters, especially Angus, and how she was able to grow.
The author kept things quite interesting throughout the story. I appreciated the surprises introduced here and there.
This is a clean read. The story is set in a violent time, but it didn't feel overly graphic. I can see myself reading this one again.
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Title: From Ash and Stone Author: Julie Daines Publisher: Covenant Communications, Inc. Published: December 2018 ISBN: 1524407461 Source: We received copies from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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