Of Love and Vengeance
by Louise Lyndon
Forced to marry Lord Aymon to ensure her young nephews survival, English Lady Laila vows undying hatred for the Norman she holds responsible for the deaths of so many innocents. Discovering Aymon has committed an act of treason gives her the chance to seek vengeance he deserves. But can Laila let Aymon die at the hands of the king once she learns the truth?
Aymon caught a flicker of movement from a window on the second story. “I think we’re about to meet the welcome party.” An arrow zoomed toward him and landed on the pommel of his saddle. A half an inch closer and he would no longer be able to sire children. As if in demonstration of his ability with the bow and arrow, the shooter fired again. This time directed toward Hugh. The second arrow too came within a half an inch of his friend’s manhood.
“You missed!” Aymon called toward the shooter. He questioned his stupidity for mocking someone with such a good aim.
“You want me to show you how good an aim I really am?” a woman’s voice echoed out across the yard.
“Bloody hell,” Hugh half cursed, half laughed. “Where does a woman learn to shoot like that?”
Aymon was shocked and admittedly a little impressed a woman had such remarkable shooting skills. He could use such a sharp shooter on his side in battle. After all, it was better to have someone so skilled firing for you than at you.
Aymon raised his black leather gloved hand in surrender. “No. I’m firmly attached to my balls, thank you very much.”
“Who are you?” the shooter demanded. “And what do you want? There is nothing of value here for you to steal. Be on your way, man, and leave me in peace.”
“Some would say a female is of value,” Aymon drawled sardonically.
A second arrow lodged firmly on the pommel between his legs.
“I do not give third chances. I’ll give you to the count of three to leave. Or else you will find an arrow straight through your heart.”
Aymon’s warhorse whinnied, and he fought to control the beast whose temperament was as black as his coat. “Put down your weapon!”
“We mean you no harm!”
“I am Lord Aymon, and this is Lord Hugh. I’ve come to claim what is rightfully mine.”
The two men looked at one another unsure what to do. “Should we storm the building and lay claim to what is yours?”
Aymon shook his head. He dismounted but never took his eyes from the door to the manor.
“She will soon make her appearance.”
Hugh, too, dismounted. “How can you be so sure?”
4 out of 5 (very good)I received this book from Goddess Fish Promotions in return for a fair and honest review.
The Normans have invaded England and are literally on the warpath. Laila and her sister, Ead, are recovering from the invasion of their home and the deaths of their loved ones. Their home has been given to a Norman Lord and they must appease him unless they want to become homeless.
This is a gritty story that paints a story of what it might have been like during those times. At times, not easy to read due to the pictures in my mind, this was nevertheless a very satisfying read. Our heroine is a sassy female who has been allowed to live an unconventional life by her father and can shoot, hunt and fish with no assistance from a male. Do not ask her to sew, mind you!
As the story progresses you see how both main characters learn that the whole of a race can't be swiped by the same prejudices. There is good and bad in everyone and everything. Seeing them learn to trust and care for each other was wonderful. The secondary characters are just as well rounded - Hildred, Guy, Alyse and Hugh to name just some.
A brilliant historical romance with the right balance of realism and romance to make it a gripping read. Highly recommended.
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AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Louise grew up in country Victoria, Australia, before moving to England, where for sixteen years she soaked up the vibrancy of London and the medieval history of England. She has since returned to Australia and now lives in Melbourne.
She has been writing the moment she picked up a copy of Diana Gabaldon's first Outlander novel twenty something years ago. She thought to herself, 'this is what I want to do' - not travel back in time, but become a novelist! She has always had snippets of dialogue and scenes floating around in her head with characters screaming at her to bring them to life.
In 2013, Louise won first prize in the Crested Butte Sandy Writing contest – Historical category for her story, The Promise, which is now called, Of Love and Vengeance.
When not writing, she can be found covered in mud, crawling under barbed wire and hoisting herself over twelve foot walls - under the guise of competing in Spartan races all over Australia.