I imagine this is one of Paula Quinn's earlier books. I cannot be sure. It is a a good medieval story with 2 good characters. The conversations are a bit silly because they are just so......pretty. But I have found that a lot of the medieval stories are like that. It is as if all the warriors back then had a poetic nature, too.
Brynna was a little melodramatic for my taste. She was a Saxon lady who was forced to marry a Norman knight, Brand. William the Conqueror also played a pivotal role in the book, which I thought was utterly unnecessary. It is a typical medieval story of the fateful year 1066, when William, Duke of Normandy, worked his way to the English throne. The story took place before 1066 and ended with the Battle of Hastings, when Brand and William were readying themselves for the battle that would mark history.
I thought the characters of Brynna and Brand were likable. The love story was sweet at best, not the kind of story that would rock your world. I think the problem was that the conflict did not give the story enough tension. Brand had been betrayed before by Colette, a woman who he loved. He therefore, had a hard time trusting his heart with another woman. Brynna was furious that she had to surrender her home to Brand and marry him. But thankfully she did not play the indignant lady of the keep whose pride turned her into an idiot. They quickly resolved to the fact that they were to marry and affections grew. At 60% they were already half in love with each other, even though Brand still had trouble admitting his feelings.
Then Colette returned, to give the story a much needed conflict. A woman who had no heart, she was the villain of the story. An evil woman plus some political schemes through which Brand learned that he loved Brynna, the End.
I loved the medieval atmosphere Paula Quinn created in this book. It reminds me Kathryn le Veque's medieval stories: knights on the white horses, ladies in kirtles. gallantry, battles, honor, and proclamations of blinding beauty and undying love. It was all grand, maybe a little too grand and too little angst for my taste.