Bantam, Jul 2001, 4.99, 339 pp.
In the middle of the fourteenth century in Breton, Morvan Fitzwaryn expects to soon die from the Black Plague if not from the angry peasants fearing his illness. However, Lady Anna de Leon, dressed in warrior garb, rescues Morvan from the irate mob and later helps nurse him back to health.
Morvan, attracted to Anna, joins her forces not out of gratitude, but out of a desire to keep the warrior woman safe. As his attraction turns to love, her feelings lead to denial because no man wants a woman as tall and tough as Anna. Instead, she believes he is after the family estate as much as the knights that are besieging her castle are. Morvan knows Anna is more than just a beautiful woman that he loves, but to persuade her will take quite an attack on her heart on his part.
THE PROTECTOR is an exciting medieval romance that is worth reading and rereading by fans due to the depth of the key cast members, especially the lead couple. Morvan is a warm PROTECTOR whose beloved does not want his safekeeping yet cannot resist him. Anna shows no fear in leading her men into combat yet is fully frightened by her growing feelings for Morvan. As has become the case with Madeline Hunter in recent years, readers will rank her latest novel as one of the best sub-genre entries for 2001.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner