Thursday, September 3, 2009
MY LORD RAVEN by Jan Scarbrough
I had another post written up for today. In it, I apologized for having not read anything worth recommending. Not that I hadn't read any romance novels this month. I have. Many, many romances. Unfortunately, I didn't read any (other than the ones for another review site) that I could hold up and say 'you have to buy this.'
That is, until I read My Lord Raven from Jan Scarbrough.
I read this medieval romance yesterday. It was my last chance book. I had recently read and loved, loved, loved Kelly Kirch's Marriage Series (Marriage Proposal – a delicious Beauty and the Beast, Marriage Mart – a witty lady disguised as a gentleman, and Marriage Plot – a spy storyline). These are some of the best Regencies I've read… well… ever. And considering I've read almost every Regency out there, that's saying a lot.
Anyhoo… I was looking for another Kelly Kirch Regency to read (because I figured it would be a guaranteed winner) so I popped over to her publisher's page. Nope, none yet available but then I saw that Minnette Meador is published there also. Well, jeepers, I like her books also. Unfortunately I'd read all of them.
One of the wonderful things about small publishers is that the same person usually buys all the books in one category. So if you like 5 out of the 14 books in the historical romance section, odds are pretty good, you'll like the other 9. I figured I owed it to you readers to give it my best try. I purchased My Lord Raven from Jan Scarbrough.
This was a GREAT decision, if I do say so myself. I loved it. Absolutely loved it!
Here's the plot…
Someone is killing off Lady Catrin's family. After her twin brother is brutally killed and she is then attacked, presumed dead, she says enough is enough (well, she would if people spoke like that back then). She decides to find the killer and execute him. Her number one suspect is Bran ap Madog, nicknamed the Raven. The rough and tough warrior is to marry Catrin's pious, timid cousin. Catrin sends her cousin to the convent and takes her place.
For years, Bran has done the King's bidding. He has killed, plundered, and blackened his reputation. When the King arranges his marriage, Bran is happy (as happy as this grim warrior could be). He wants to settle down, tend the lands his bride brings him, and raise little rugrats (seriously, he seriously wants that). What he doesn't want is drama.
As you can imagine, Bran gets a whole heap of drama. The killing doesn't stop. There's blackmail and threats and Lady Catrin drives a dear priest to the bottle. There is also passion and love, genuine love. Bran is a REAL alpha, not one of our romance alphas. He holds himself to his own standards and doesn't care what others think. If he thinks he should spend a week tending to his wounded wife, he does it. Sure, he also slices off limbs of baddies willy nilly but that's all part of protecting what is his.
Bran is what makes My Lord Raven extra special. This unique hero made my heart melt. The writing is wonderful. I laughed and cried and hoped along with Bran. If you love medieval romances, you'll love My Lord Raven.
This novel is as spicy as a Harlequin Historical and about as gory (for a medieval).
Other novels from Jan Scarbrough can be found at