The King's Man
by Alison Stuart
Publisher: Escape Publishing - Harlequin Enterprises, Australia Pty
Page Count: 374
Release Date: September 1, 2015
How got: personal library; via Amazon
First attention getter: avid follower of the author
The second in a tantalising trilogy from award-winning author Alison Stuart, about warriors, the wounds they carry and the women that help them heal.
London 1654: Kit Lovell is one of the King’s men, a disillusioned Royalist who passes his time cheating at cards, living off his wealthy and attractive mistress and plotting the death of Oliver Cromwell.
Penniless and friendless, Thamsine Granville has lost everything. Terrified, in pain and alone, she hurls a piece of brick at the coach of Oliver Cromwell and earns herself an immediate death sentence. Only the quick thinking of a stranger saves her.
Far from the bored, benevolent rescuer that he seems, Kit plunges Thamsine into his world of espionage and betrayal – a world that has no room for falling in love.
Torn between Thamsine and loyalty to his master and King, Kit’s carefully constructed web of lies begins to unravel. He must make one last desperate gamble – the cost of which might be his life.
Star Rating - 5
I keep enjoying Stuart’s works, one after the other. I really need to get to the one I have on hold as from the trend she’s been following, I think I’ll enjoy it. She excels in this addition as well. Her emotional resonance and ability to take her readers on an amazing, romantic journey always pleases.
I haven’t had a historical romance take me on as powerful an emotional journey as this one did in a while. All the trials that Kit and Thamsine go through, from kidnapping to jail time in the Tower of London to near-death experiences, all build up to a truly jaw-dropping amount of crying and soaring on the wings of happiness. To me, high-emotional content is key to a historical romance succeeding, and Stuart pleases on that front.
She also, again, takes care with her historical details for setting her scene and background for her story. She details the lives of the regular Joe Blows in London, bringing that human-filled, stinky, and vibrant world to life. She also draws on little known plots against Cromwell and the Parliamentary government to give action and suspense to her romantic tale.
As I mentioned before, I love Kit’s and Thamsine’s romantic relationship. They play off each other well, sparking with tension and depth not present in every relationship. However, they’re also strong as individuals.
I loved Thamsin’s strength of character and courage, willing to brave living on the streets and degradation rather than marry the abusive man her father betrothed her to. Kit is a man caught in truly trying circumstances, forced into actions he’d rather not take due to the side of the conflict he was on and forced to do truly horrible things to those he loves as a result. They even lead to some deaths which are truly heavy burdens to bear for Kit. Yet, he meets this with strength of character and firm sense of honor that I enjoyed.
This is another work I’d highly recommend to historical romance lovers from Stuart’s talented pen/computer keyboard. Her characters are strong in their own right and play off each other to create at moving romance. She also backs that all up with great historical details. Don’t hesitate to pick this title up! It’s a great find.