Hello, Sunshines, I am delighted to be today’s stop on the blog tour for; Voices in the Mist by Susanne Dunlap. I can’t wait to share my review of this enchanting book with you all.
Firstly, thank you to Amy at Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours for the invite.
About the Book
Voices in the Mist by Susanne Dunlap.
Series: The Orphan’s of Tolosa #3
Genre: Historical Fiction.
Marry a Catholic stranger, or flee the only world she’s ever known: Headstrong Bruna de Gansard must choose one or the other to protect her Cathar family from the inquisitors.
Toulouse, 1229. The inquisitors have arrived to rid the city of Cathar heretics once and for all, and are putting all unmarried girls over the age of 12 to the question. After an incident in the town calls unwanted attention to 14-year-old Bruna, a young Catholic stranger who is sympathetic to the heretics warns her family about the looming danger, and volunteers to marry their daughter to save her from being questioned.
But Bruna doesn’t want to be forced into marriage, so she chooses flight—which lands her unexpectedly in the midst of a Catholic pilgrimage to Compostela, thrusting her into a life of deceit.
When her beauty and her voice bring her to the attention of the powerful Baron de Belascon, who owes fealty to the king of France, Bruna earns the enmity of the baron’s bitter and imperious mother and finds herself caught between her allegiance to her own people and the dangerous secret of her origins—a secret that can be revealed at any time after the arrival of a French knight who recognizes her.
The Orphans of Tolosa Trilogy comes to a dramatic end in this gripping story of loyalty and betrayal, set amidst the violence and peril of the Albigensian Crusades.
The third and final instalment in the engaging; The Orphan’s of Tolosa Trilogy, is a prequel to the previous two books so you can read this as a stand-alone (but do read the other two books in order though).
Set during the 13th century, south of France Voices in the Mist follows the story of a young Cather; Bruna – who is the sister of Azalais who is the heroine of the previous books. When the Catholic Inquisition reaches her part of France she is in danger – for those who haven’t been following the series, of for those who don’t know the history, like me when I first started reading this series.
The Cathers were persecuted by the Catholic church, they saw themselves as true Christians, but as we all know from history when the Catholic church decrees something and others don’t follow then it ult results in horror and death. And this is what happened to the Cathers, they were treated abysmally and destroyed.
From the start you are gripped with the dramatic opening, Knights storming the city of Toloso in hun for the Cathers – usually, I would love a Knight but I can’t find myself liking these guys. Most of the Cathers chose instead of fleeing but to hide in plain sight as the Inquisition has arrived and with it comes death and devastation.
We see as Bruna is separated from her family, she is scared and alone but lucky to come across a sympathetic catholic merchant who helps her back to her family. Once returned to her family her parents arrange a marriage between her and the catholic merchant who took care of her and is sympathetic toward the Cathers. Like any parent, they do this to anything in their power to protect their children, but Bruna is free-spirited and wish to be married off to a perfect stranger whether it will keep her alive or not, so she does what all teenagers do and runs away and inadvertently joins a pilgrimage of noblewomen.
I loved the way Dunlap meticulously entwines troubaourian folklore, history and knowledge into the story using old songs and poems, by way of Bruna who has a beautiful voice she is young and yearns to learn and through her, we learn too.
Susanne Dunlap is an incredibly gifted author, she swirls tension and danger around the read like a mist hovering over a pond, Bruna’s journey is compelling and authentic, you will be hooked right to the end.
Voices in the Mist is a vividly atmospheric and excellently writing historical that will easily become a much loved classic. The author captivates the reader with her vivid and eloquent wring, her attention to historical detail is second to none you feel as though you are right there in the thick of all the danger. There were times I had hairs stand on end and goosebumps by the gripping and haunting story of family, danger and betrayal set in a perilous and blood stained time.
This reminds me a little of Labyrinth by Kate Mosse, with the same setting and era readers who love Mosses trilogy as much as I do will love this one too.
Overall, Voices in the Mist is as enchanting and mysterious as the title sounds, you will get all the feels and at times think as though you are hearing voices in the mist. It’s a brilliant and highly satisfying ending to what has been a gripping and mesmerising series, one which I will remember for a very long time to come.
About the Author
Susanne Dunlap is the author of nine works of historical fiction. A graduate of Smith College with a PhD in Music History from Yale University, Susanne grew up in Buffalo, New York and has lived in London, Brooklyn and Northampton, MA. She now lives in Northampton with her long-time partner, Charles, has two grown daughters, three granddaughters, a grandson, a stepson and a stepdaughter, five step-grandsons and one step-granddaughter—that’s a total of four children and eleven grandchildren!
In her spare time, she cycles in the beautiful Pioneer Valley.
For more information, please visit Susanne Dunlap’s website. You can follow author Susanne Dunlap on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Instagram, Pinterest, and BookBub.
Blog Tour Schedule
Tuesday, September 21
Guest Post at Novels Alive
Wednesday, September 22
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Thursday, September 23
Review at Pursuing Stacie
Friday, September 24
Review at Novels Alive
Feature at Reading is My Remedy
Monday, September 27
Review at Passages to the Past
Tuesday, September 28
Feature at The Cozy Book Blog
Wednesday, September 29
Feature at The Caffeinated Bibliophile
Thursday, September 30
Review at Bookworlder
Friday, October 1
Review at Bonnie Reads and Writes
Saturday, October 2
Feature at I’m All About Books
Monday, October 4
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks
Tuesday, October 5
Excerpt at Books and Benches
Wednesday, October 6
Feature at SplendeurCaisse
Thursday, October 7
Review at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals
Friday, October 8
Feature at Jathan & Heather
Monday, October 11
Review at Up Past My Bedtime
Tuesday, October 12
Review at With A Book In Our Hands
Thursday, October 14
Review at Across the Sky in Stars
Friday, October 15
Feature at Coffee and Ink
Enter to win a paperback set of The Orphans of Tolosa Trilogy! 3 sets are up for grabs!
Direct Link: https://gleam.io/g0VEB/voices-in-the-mist
The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on October 15th. You must be 18 or older to enter.