29 November 2007
5 Star Review for A Restless Knight
Single Titles.com Reviews' Choice Award Winner 2006
RIO Award Winner - Best Debut Novel 2006
Laurie Award Winner
More Than Magic Winner
Best Debut P.E.A.R.L. Award Nominee
*****A terrific combination of love, history and destiny, rolled into an exquisite and exciting read.
The responsibility of any fiction writer who puts pen to paper (or fingers to a computer keyboard) is simple: To take care of the reader. With her historical romance A Restless Knight, writer Deborah MacGillivray not only lives up to her responsibility to take care of her readers -- she goes above and beyond it. The restless knight in question is one Julian Challon, the Black Dragon, and reluctant henchman to his liege lord, Edward Plantagenet, King of England. Edward, known as 'Hammer of the Scots,' used almost any means to crush what he considered the unruly Scots from outright warfare and destruction to subtle infiltration. Through his 'wed-and-bred' campaign, Edward commanded his English leaders to impregnate and marry Scottish women so their offspring could automatically hold Scots land. Under English law, property ownership was transferred through the father.
Using this historic and brutal time as a backdrop, MacGillivray creates a wonderful love story, finding the perfect feminine foil for her tortured, dark-haired hero -- Lady Tamlyn McShane, holder of Glenrohga in the Scottish highlands. While Tamlyn is shaken to the roots of her fiery hair by the sensuality of her dark, powerful knight and captor, Julian is shaken too. Tamlyn confounds him -- he's never met anyone like her before. For one thing, women don't hold power, title or lands where he comes from. Nonetheless, his attraction to her pagan wildness and strength is instantaneous.
Meanwhile, Tamlyn's reluctant compulsion into Julian's arms leads to love scenes hot enough to melt snow off the Scottish tors. But more is at work here than a roll in the hay between two strong-willed individuals. Deathly tired of battle, and grieving over the untimely death of his brother at the massacre of Berwick (one of Edward's bloodier battles in Scotland), Julian wants peace in his life, and a mate to share it with, rather than a vessel for his children. He believes his coming to Glenrohga is fate and Tamlyn, through her own 'kenning,' or psychic foreknowledge, ultimately realizes it, too. Don't be fooled into thinking that everything is wrapped up neatly once these two get together, though.
Throughout the book, MacGillivray continually springs surprises to the very last page. Nor is there a clean-cut ending MacGillivray leaves enough loose ends to direct readers to the sequel, Ravenhawke, scheduled for release in August 2007. A plot that skillfully weaves history with fiction, combined with an unforgettable hero and heroine ensure that anyone reading A Restless Knight is in for a rare and touching experience. Well done, Deborah MacGillivray, and thank you.
~~Amy Wolff Sorter, author, Servant of the Gods