Civil War Era Romance
Theo Howard, Earl of Suffolk is torn. Betrothed to a child to satisfy his family dynasty, he longs for the freedom to make his own choice. And when he attends a lavish party at his family’s newly-restored palace, he is immediately attracted to Lucy, a beautiful young lavender-seller. But in this enchanted world of Shakespeare’s Midsummer’s Night Dream, all is not as it appears. Theo’s headstrong sister Frances is determined to sabotage her own arranged marriage, and aided by the cunning of Frances and her friend Barbara St.John, perhaps Theo can find his own path to happiness and true love.
When I wrote The Lady of the Tower, the story revealed itself in the narrative of my ancestress, Lucy St.John. But, as with all novels, other characters appeared, and their voices grew strong and insistent, demanding their own story be told. And so, a novelette was born. This is Theo’s counterpoint to chapter six in the novel, in which Theo falls in love.
A counterpoint is a melody played in conjunction with another, or an opposing viewpoint in an argument. Our lives are complex, and each one of us carries within us a counterpoint to another’s story. Here is one to Lucy St.John, the lady of the Tower.
What a wonderful taste into this authors work, as this is the first I have read by Elizabeth St. John and I will definitely be reading more from her. I hadn’t read her full-length story; The Lady in the Tower but, I didn’t find that to be a hindrance or feel that I had missed out on something as this is very cleverly written. In fact, I found I was intrigued even more by the character’s and the story want to learn more about them and their antic’s.
This is a short story which basically follows Theo; Earl of Suffolk as he meets and falls in love with lovely Lucy the Lavender seller. This is written in first person and we see the events through Theo’s eyes. To please his family, he is betrothed to a woman whom his family deem worthy of the Earls of Suffolk dynasty. But Theo is feeling suffocated by it all, he just wants one moment where he can do what he wants and for a few moments be who he wants to be. Which is when he meets beautiful and spirited lavender seller; Lucy St John at a party at his families newly refurbished home. He is instantly drawn towards her, but with his tenacious sister Frances set to cause a scandal, will Theo have the future he wants with Lucy?
What a wonderful little peek into another’s world, that is how I saw this when I read it. I have never read a ‘counterpoint story’ before and I thoroughly enjoyed the sneaky dip into Theo and Lucy’s world. What I particularly like about this is that it is loosely based on the author’s ancestry, something which I can relate to completely as this is something I am doing myself. It is quite the inspiration seeing an author who has taken her ancestry and created a book out of it. I really like that!
I found Ms St. John’s writing to be clever and vivid to the senses plus brilliantly detailed that the era has come to life as you read, even though this is a short story you get a real sense of the author’s love for the story and the era.
A very enjoyable read, one that gets the taste-buds watering for more.
This was a complimentary copy via the author in exchange for an honest review.
Counterpoint; Theo Earl of Suffolk is available to purchase at Amazon.
Royalist officer James Hart refuses to accept the tyranny of the new government, and to raise funds for the restoration of the king’s son, he takes to the road as a highwayman.
Elizabeth Seton has long been shunned for being a traitor’s daughter. In the midst of the new order, she risks her life by sheltering fugitives from Parliament in a garrison town. But her attempts to rebuild her life are threatened, first by her own sense of injustice, then by falling in love with the dashing Hart.
The lovers’ loyalty is tested through war, defeat and separation. James must fight his way back to the woman he loves, while Elizabeth will do anything to save him, even if it means sacrificing herself.
Traitor’s Knot is a sweeping tale of love and conflicted loyalties set against the turmoil of the English Civil War.