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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

For Fans of English History: The Assassin's Wife

I edited this book, so I'm possibly unreliable, but The Assassin's Wife by new author Moonyeen Blakey is a refreshing, vivid foray into English history that the reader is sure to remember for a long time.

It's told from the point of view of Nan, a woman gifted -- or cursed -- with Second Sight. Nan must navigate the political intricacies of England during the Wars of the Roses as well as demanding late medieval social expectations while defending herself from ghostly visions, dreaming of her true love, and avoiding being arrested as a witch. Her overarching goal in life is to save the boys who appear in her visions trapped and in imminent peril in the Tower of London.

The history is complex, but the storytelling is so clear, the reader is never confused. It's also a long book, taking exactly as long as it needs to in order to tell the story. Over the course of all the pages, the reader becomes more and more attached to the main character and the historical figures she comes into contact with. During editing, I ended up reading a certain scene six or seven times because I was naturally drawn to it. The first time I teared up, which is unusual enough, but I found that each time I reread the scene, it had the same devastating effect on me. Because of its powerful writing, this book won a prize before it was even published. If you like history, and enjoy getting to know your narrator intimately as a friend, you will understand why.

The Assassin's Wife is available now in paperback, Kindle, and epub formats!