Pocket, Aug 2003, 6.99
In 1180 twelve years old William Aiden Brinlaw knows he disappoints his father because males don't do magic though he has power. Thus William decides to become a knight. He visits the Spirit of the Cave to tell her of his decision, but she scoffs at his denial insisting the first wizard in a thousand generations should be proud of his magical prowess before imbedding a dragon onto William's skin.
Sixteen years later, William, who calls himself Aiden, is to marry Prince John's sister Katherine if he wins back Glencairn for the English. The castle is in independent Scotland, but its English lord just died in the Crusades. At Glencairn, Aiden finds a major surprise when he meets Mistress Evelyn and her infant son sired by the previous lord. An even greater surprise comes when Aiden falls in love with this enchantress who reciprocates his deepest feelings. However, love may not prove strong enough as John will have something violent to say and the Scots including her three nephews want the usurper either out of the country or dead.
Fans of romances with a touch of fantasy elements will appreciate this delightful twelfth century tale. The story line grips the audience due to the embattled lead couple. Evelyn is intrepid and intelligent while Aiden is a unique protagonist with a neurotic belief he can never live up to his sire (or his older brother) due to his wizardry abilities though he occasionally makes use of magic. He makes the tale special and fun as he adds interesting elements on top of what would be a typical period romance.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner