Release Date 06/06/17
Series: Forbidden, #2
I really liked this book. It is an emotionally charged book that is centered more on the hero than the heroine. It is a little light in the romance department, but it is a beautiful story nonetheless.
Alesone is a woman on the run, she is trying to escape her father, Lord Comyn, who plans to use her as a pawn to over throw King Robert. Alesone is loyal to Robert and wants nothing to do with Lord Comyn.
Sir Thomas is a displaced Templar Knight, who is on his way to join King Robert, when he comes across Alesone, who shoots an arrow at him, narrowly missing his heart. She claims to be the king’s healer but Thomas doesn’t believe her. He thinks she is a spy assassin and thinks she is just bluffing about her relationship with the king.
When the plot Alesone’s father has concocted is revealed, the king charges Thomas with seeing Alesone to safety. Thomas is not pleased about this turn of events, but does as the king bids. When he is injured, Alesone saves him and finds them shelter. When Thomas wakes, he recognizes the owner of the cottage they are in and discovers he is near his childhood home.
Sir John, the owner of the cottage, has Thomas and Alesone taken to the nearby monastery for further help. Once there Thomas’ past comes rushing back and he is confronted with old friends, family and heartache that he has spent years running from.
Thomas’ father comes to claim his son and Thomas is reluctant to go home, but knowing that Alesone’s safety is paramount, he agrees. Alesone has tended Thomas and they have grown close, she doesn’t expect anything will come from their time together, but she is beginning to fall in love with him and wants to help him heal, not only physically, but mentally and emotionally. Alesone has been alone most of her life and has recently lost the only person she had ever considered family. She blames herself for Grisel’s death and can understand Thomas’ grief – but she can’t understand his refusal to rejoin his family.
Alesone is a beautiful person, both inside and out and my heart broke for her, she has lost so much and when she begins to open herself up to Thomas, he repeatedly shuts her out. I understood his reasons, but he was really awful to her, maybe not on purpose, but he hurts her again and again. The healing of Thomas takes time and he doesn’t make it easy – he has judged himself unworthy of forgiveness or of love and no matter what anyone says, he won’t change his mind. Alesone along with his friends and his father really have their work cut out for them convincing Thomas to accept their love.
I thought the book was well written, but it did drag a little bit in the middle and Thomas’ reasons for not acknowledging his feelings for Alesone started to get old and tired. But once he begins to forgive himself and accept that he deserves happiness, the story picks up. I enjoyed his bumbling attempts to explain himself to Alesone. The heat factor in this book is rather low, there are some love scenes and they are well done, but not steamy. There are a few battle scenes, but nothing horrifically violent or gory. There is also a twist at the end, that I never saw coming, but was delighted by on Alesone’s behalf.
In the end, I really liked this book and I would be happy to recommend it. It is the second book in the Forbidden Series, but it could be read as a stand alone title with no problems.
* I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC provided to me by Netgalley and the publisher*