Lady Margaret Grey of Hartfell wants for nothing. The daughter of a knight, she has a loving family, wealth, and even a secret romance with the blacksmith's son. But all that is torn from her one fateful night when her home is attacked and her family killed. She is left with nothing but bitterness, an unwavering mistrust of men, and a strange and mysterious curse that allows her to feel the thoughts of anyone who touches her.
Now, after six years away, Margaret is returning home for one reason: revenge. She hopes that by avenging her family's deaths, she will somehow be freed from her curse. But it won't be easy. the identities of the raiders are still unknown, she has little left to her name, and traveling alone in the Northumbrian hills during the border wars is dangerous. Matters are further complicated by handsome Angus Robson, a Scotsman whose charm threatens to distract her from her plans. But the raiders are closer than she knows, and Margaret soon realizes that what she believed to be a curse may be the key to finding those she seeks. One touch will reveal the truth.
Julie Daines did a great job with her latest medieval novel, From Ash and Stone. My attention was caught right off and held throughout the story.
I really liked the characters. Margaret was not at all like the other ladies of her time. Everything she'd been through made her such a strong, independent woman. Although she was burdened with a desire for revenge, quite often we saw moments of her good heart. I loved her interactions with the other characters, especially Angus, and how she was able to grow.
The author kept things quite interesting throughout the story. I appreciated the surprises introduced here and there.
This is a clean read. The story is set in a violent time, but it didn't feel overly graphic. I can see myself reading this one again.
*I received a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are my own.
What a refreshing breath of fresh air this book was for me. I needed a change of pace and this book was perfect for me this week.
The over arching themes of forgiveness, loyalty and love were always present in this book. No matter which character I was focusing on, I always felt those three things in some way or another. I felt like I knew the characters and understood their motivations. It's always such a gift to be invited into a story to feel and experience along with the characters. This definitely happened for me with this book.
I absolutely fell in love with Angus. From the very beginning I knew he would be someone I would like. As more of his story came out, my admiration and love grew. He is solid, trustworthy and kind. The loyalty he feels to those he loves is astounding. Oh, and don't even get me started on Angus's brother. I loved him too. For so many reasons.
Margaret is an interesting character. She is bold and strong, driven by revenge and justice. She is so determined. I love how she is gradually softened by the people around her. Her perception of loyalty and devotion shifts as she learns more about the Robson brothers and others around her. I just loved the whole character development with Margaret. It felt very satisfying.
I really loved this book!
Content: mild violence, kissing, peril
- I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions expressed are my own.
I love the writing of Julie Daines. I jump at every opportunity to read one of her books. This book was no exception.
From Ash and Stone is set during the time of King Henry VIII. The border between England and Scotland is not solid. Raiders came and stole Lady Margaret Gray's life and home six years before the beginning of this book. She has come to seek vengeance against those responsible for the death of her family.
The book has an interesting twist. Margaret is able to see the thoughts and intentions of those she touches. She thinks of it as a curse, but it is a blessing in disguise.
I loved this book. I loved the characters, the setting, the time period. Margaret seems to attract those who need her. She has some good friends, she spent so much time alone that it is nice to see her cared for. The book has a dark side, there are evil men who steal and murder. Politics of the time are a big part of the book. I always find it fascinating to have historical situations in a novel. It makes it more interesting and the time comes to life for me.
This is a great book. It has non-graphic violence.
Source: I received a complimentory copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
This book is set in the 1500’s. Sometimes it’s nice to take a break from contemporary books and Regency novels and read something set in a different time period.
I liked the way Julie Daines did this one. She had believable characters, crazy time period plot and really just an overall great use of both to make this one work.
I liked Margaret. She’s been through tons in her short life. Watching her family die pretty much in front of her made her a strong young woman. Then she’s had to deal with an extra “power.” Being able to know people’s thoughts seems like a huge curse. It makes everything harder for her. She must constantly be covered and or be extra vigilant not to touch any one else’s bare skin.
But Margaret has a huge flaw. She wants to find out just who was responsible for killing her family. And she wants revenge. She isn’t at all careful about how she goes about getting her revenge either. That constantly gets her into trouble.
And then there’s Angus. The reader doesn’t see any of the story through his eyes. But he has an uncanny ability to be there just when Margaret has made another huge mistake. And to be able to get her out of whatever trouble she’s gotten herself into. There are so many!
That’s what makes the plot of this one so great! I didn’t want to put the book down because Margaret was constantly in some peril or about to get into some.
I also loved the bit of history included by the author at the end of the book. Have I ever mentioned I like history…I can’t remember. But I love learning about how things were during different time periods and why.
From Ash and Stone is a fabulous book! Make sure to get your own copy!
This was a really good story. I liked Lady Margaret and really felt for her situation. Angus was a really fun character too. I loved how sticky he was. Their situation showed how hard it was to live during those border wars and how truly one day someone was an enemy and the next the same was an ally. The only problem I had was how quickly her feelings shifted both ways. I guess I didn't feel things as strongly as Lady Margaret did, but as I look back on the story, I can see why it happened. It is a wonderful story full of defiance, love, acceptance, and learning to let others in that I would recommend to anyone who loves a great story.