Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A Constant Heart by Siri Mitchell

Set in the waning years Elizabethan England, A Constant Heart is the story of the Earl of Selwyck and his lovely and naïve young bride. A young woman he married for her dowry. As he schemes and intrigues for the Queen’s favor, his new wife is left floundering amidst the grandeur and pettiness of Elizabeth’s court.

As their family totters on the brink of ruin they must learn to trust the Lord and one another in order to survive.

Siri Mitchell’s prose is gripping from page one. I found myself hard pressed to put down this book. It is beautifully written and full of historical details, which bring it to life rather than weighing it down. One of the themes is beauty and the price women will pay to achieve the look considered beautiful in their society. The make-up used by women of the time, mercury and so on literally poisoned them. It is a fascinating tale and one that has ramifications for women today.

The only caveat I have about this story is that it is told in First person, both in the hero and the heroine’s perspective. At times, especially when you are really devouring the pages the transitions, get lost and it can be confusing as you wonder whose head you are really in.

Overall, however, I was totally invested in these characters and I had to find out what happened to them. A little awkwardness in the transitions was a small price to pay for a great and memorable story.

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Must Reads

  • All the Tea in China-Jane Orcutt www.revellbooks.com
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  • Wings of a Dream-Anne Mateer