Monday, March 12, 2018

Book Review: 'Flight of the Raven' by Judith Sterling

If one is a loyal subject, she does what her king commands. But what if that command is to wed a stranger? And what if your family is cursed? And what if you are fated to die in childbirth unless your child is conceived in true love? Lady Emma has maintained Ravenswood and its inhabitants magnificently, acting not only as mistress, but healer. She’s much loved and respected. Now she’s been ordered by the king to wed Sir William L’Orage, a fierce warrior, who is being rewarded for his service. William is anxious to claim his property and his bride, and while Emma will abide by the king’s order to marry, she will make sure the marriage isn’t consummated.
Emma is one of those characters who is nearly perfect, but despite this, I still liked her, as her actions were genuine and done with the best motives. The immediate attraction that Emma and William feel for each other is going to test her resolve. I really liked William despite his wariness of love and his suspicion of everyone’s motives. He has lived a hard life, yet he treats Emma with respect. Though he’s desperate for her, he won’t force her, which is somewhat of a miracle in the 1100’s.
I’m generally not a fan of medieval stories – the primitive conditions make me shudder. This story tipped its hat to a modern day battle of the sexes, and there were a few modern expressions tossed in occasionally which seemed out of place. The medieval romance fan will appreciate the handsome and seductive knight’s attempts to woo the fair maiden, who attempts to hold on to her virginity until true love shows its face. If you enjoy a touch of the paranormal in a sexy battle of wills, and can overlook a few anachronisms, I believe you’ll savor Flight of the Raven.

Editor's note: This article was originally published at Long and Short ReviewsIt has been republished with permission. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.