Hello reader friends! I just realized that I posted my review about the novella in Jody Hedlund’s new series, but not this book. Sorry!! It is so good, and I just got access to the second book in the series and I cannot wait to devour it 🙂
An ancient key. A secret treasure. And a princess destined to use them both to fight evil and restore peace.
Raised by a noble family, Lady Adelaide has always known she’s an orphan. Little does she realize she’s one of the lost princesses and the true heir to Mercia’s throne…until a visitor arrives at her family estate, reveals her birthright as queen, and thrusts her into a quest for the throne whether she’s ready or not.
Unable to tolerate King Ethelwulf’s cruelty and lawlessness, Christopher Langley left Mercia years earlier, training a group of rebels in neighboring Norland. When he returns home after his mother’s death, he discovers that not only is Adelaide all grown up, but she’s also the rightful queen of Mercia.
When King Ethelwulf discovers Adelaide’s location, he’ll stop at nothing to capture her and the key she holds to the ancient treasure. Christopher is just as determined to protect Adelaide so she can lead the growing rebellion. When feelings ignite between the two old friends, forces threaten to destroy their love and rip them apart forever.
Oh my goodness, I cannot get enough of this series already! I was already hooked with the prequel, so going in I knew I was in for a great ride, but Hedlund even exceeded those expectations! There were twists and turns that I didn’t see coming, romance, loyalty, surprises, and a few moments that I did see coming. And yes, this is a YA book, but even so there were some smooches that are going in my swoony scenes list. I’m not sure if it was my hype about the kiss, the way Hedlund wrote the scene, or a combination of the two, but yeah – I was totally sighing afterwards.
Lady Adelaide isn’t your typical princess, and I think that’s why I liked her so much. She isn’t afraid to get dirty, to fight, to do all the things a guy does essentially – a tomboy in our day. And that’s me to a T. Yes I can get dressed up, but I love doing guy stuff too! But here’s the thing I liked about her even more – she was not afraid to stand up for what was right. From the very beginning she had this stance, and Adelaide would not back down from her decisions. She is just such a strong character and I look forward to seeing what comes next for her.
Then you have Christopher. Boy did he have a past that was weighing heavy on him, and it got me thinking – he did what he felt was right, but it still weighed him down. Are there things in my life like that, and how can I get rid of them? I think perhaps Christopher had the most character development out of any of the characters, and I really enjoyed seeing his changes throughout the story. He was strong, yet vulnerable – especially when it came to Lady Adelaide. But at the end of the day he really just wanted to right his wrongs and be able to move on with his life. Something I’m sure we all can connect with at one time or another in our life.
Hedlund keeps readers on their toes with tons of action as our characters try to stay hidden from the King’s army. There’s not much time to breathe here folks, so make sure you have plenty of reading time. I think you’ll find you do not want to put the book down. The only downside to reading so quick is that it’s over, and I’m just not ready to say goodbye to these characters. Now I just have to wait (impatiently I might add) for the next release!
I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
“She scowled at me, but nothing, not even a frown, could mar her loveliness.”
“But all he had to do was speak a few endearments, hold me, and kiss my cheek, and I’d melted like wax against a flame.”
“You must face the demons of your past so that you can force yourself to finally walk beyond them.”
“Besides, every woman appreciates when a man takes the time and effort to demonstrate his love, not for what he can get out of it but for what he can give.”
Jody Hedlund is the author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award.
Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats. Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she’s learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).
When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.