Lady Sabine is harboring a skin blemish, one, that if revealed, could cause her to be branded as a witch, put her life in danger, and damage her chances of making a good marriage. After all, what nobleman would want to marry a woman so flawed?
Sir Bennet is returning home to protect his family from an imminent attack by neighboring lords who seek repayment of debts. Without fortune or means to pay those debts, Sir Bennet realizes his only option is to make a marriage match with a wealthy noblewoman. As a man of honor, he loathes the idea of courting a woman for her money, but with time running out for his family’s safety, what other choice does he have?
As Lady Sabine and Sir Bennet are thrust together under dangerous circumstances, will they both be able to learn to trust each other enough to share their deepest secrets? Or will those secrets ultimately lead to their demise?
My penny's worth...
For Love and Honor is set in Medieval England, where superstition abounds. The Aristocracy own patches of Land and defend them with their own army. Keeping peace with one’s neighbour is important and at times skirmishes break out over a matter of honour.
Enter the Heroine Lady Sabine and the Hero Sir Bennet. Both characters have a great sense of humour which hides their real emotions. Lady Sabine hides a blemish that if seen could put her life in danger and therefore wears a pair of long gloves to hide it. Sir Bennet is charming, handsome and a gentleman, but he is uneasy about marrying for money. Indeed money seems to hinder his mindset rather a lot. I felt like saying, "get over it" lad and move on, there is a woman to woo.
Then there is the Dowager, now she is a woman not to tangle with. Her intentions and conniving are delicious. Is there nothing she won't do to get her own way?
Eager to begin this book I dived into its pages. Then I began to sink - Carriage's in Medieval England, with compartments under the seats?
I have to admit that this image had me scrolling through Google to find pictures. Being English I dislike inaccuracies in books written by Authors from another country. It took a while but eventually, I found a carriage of sorts. It was like a farmers wagon, heavily made of wood, with side seats and a frame of sorts over the top covered with material. But no door as depicted in this book.
In my mind, from the description, all I could think about were carriages in use in the days of the highwaymen. And yes the same happened when bandits arrived on the scene, again my imagination summed up the classic highwayman of old England. For days the ebook remained unopened, then I remembered that I had agreed to do an honest review for the Author. Picking it up again and burying the previous images I continued - and I am so pleased I did...
The meat on the bones
Accepting an invitation to visit Sir Bennet, Lady Sabine and the Dowager set off from their home to his Castle with different motives. Constant self-doubt badgers Lady Sabine during her visit while a chivalrous Sir Bennet fights between duty and love. Sabine asks why the handsome Sir Bennet, who could have any lady in the land, would want to spend his time with a plain Jane like her?
Chapter after chapter the main characters pick daisy petals - he loves me, he loves me not like in the Disney fairy tales.
Which Character spoke to me the most?
I can’t make up my mind which character I liked the most, Sabine for her strength or Bennet for his honourable nature. Or perhaps the Dowager who would do anything for her Granddaughter. The first two charm and frustrate the reader at the same time. Sacrifice is the main theme running throughout and both characters have their own fair share of it.
The flow of the book
I did find I struggled at times with the character changes at the beginning of the chapters. Now reading at a pace and eagerly turning the pages I would be Sabine one moment and then have to switch to Bennet. Having said that it was interesting getting inside their heads and hearing from the other perspective.
What did I like about the book?
Once it started to run, I enjoyed the teasing between Sabine and Bennet. The workings of The Dowager's mind, out to get her own way, flowing in and out of the pages like a motherly hen; and Bennet's mother who too is looking for a suitable outcome. Then the blemish that could destroy everything, so neatly hidden by a glove, but ever rearing its ugly head wanting to be accepted and finally Sabine's desperate desire to be loved for who she really was.
This is a good book for emphasising the importance of honour in love for young adults. The role model depicted by Sir Bennet has almost been ditched by young men today along with the emphasis that women deserve to be respected. The book tackles the pull of early love and how the heart, emotions and physical attraction can be a challenging mountain to climb. Apart from the love story, there is action, reaction and superstition to entertain the reader.
Would I recommend this book?
Personally, I think this book would be a great read to get young people talking about today's relationships. There is plenty of meat to chew on and in the end whether the lad gets the girl or not it is a good moral story. I would, therefore, recommend it and shall award it 4 stars as I liked it. Oh, that carriage and the highwaymen, I still can't get the image out of my head - but that is my problem!
A word of thanks
Thank you, Jody Hedlund, for writing this book and bringing a moral dilemma into action.
*Thanks to Celebrate Lit for a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review and all opinions stated are my own.*
About the Author
Jody Hedlund is a best-selling and award-winning author who loves fairy-tales and happily-ever-afters. She makes her home in Midland, MI with her husband and five teen-aged children. When she’s not writing another of her page-turning stories, you can usually find her sipping coffee, eating chocolate, and reading.
Guest Post from Jody Hedlund
Is Chivalry on the Brink of Extinction?
By Jody Hedlund
With the release of Fifty Shades of Grey movie and its popularity, I can’t help but wonder about the long-term consequences that such ideology will have on how people view relationships.
Already, too many couples struggle to maintain happy, healthy relationships. In fact, it’s become almost a weekly occurrence to get news of another friend or acquaintance who is dealing with a spouse cheating or leaving.
Mutual respect, loyalty, honor, and self-sacrifice have become out-dated, forgotten, or tossed aside in place of short-term pleasure that often leaves people feeling hollow and empty.
I honestly can’t help wondering where chivalry has gone, and not just the man-doting-on-the-woman chivalry. But mutual chivalry, the kind where each person in the relationship puts the other in high esteem, uplifts them, and makes a concerted effort to protect and cherish (both emotionally and physically).
Has chivalry become antiquated in our modern society? And even if it has, should it be outdated and on the brink of extinction? Should we be making more of an effort to reclaim mutual respect in relationships?
The kind of respect that does things for someone with no thought of getting anything in return.
The kind of respect that is graciously honest about problems instead of sneaking around and being unfaithful.
The kind of respect that is willing to sacrifice and see the needs of others instead of demanding our way and our own needs be met first.
As my teenage children enter into dating relationships, I worry about the influence of movies like Fifty Shades of Grey. I worry that they’ll see dysfunction as the norm. I worry that they’ll settle for a lot less than they should in their relationships. I worry that they won’t even know the meaning of chivalry.
Of course, we’re having candid conversations about all of these issues. Of course, my husband and I attempt to model mutual respect. And of course, I’m praying my teens work on growing their own character so that they can be strong and ready for whatever they might face.
But one of the things I’ve done over the past couple of years is write a young adult (YA) series that is aimed at some of these very issues The third book, FOR LOVE & HONOR, just released this spring (and can be read as a stand-alone). Since the story is set in medieval times amidst castles, knights, and ladies, chivalry is already a huge part of that era.
More than giving readers a glimpse of chivalry, however, I hope the book sparks some discussion about what it means to have healthy, respectful relationships. The book contains reader questions at the end that youth groups, moms and daughters, or friends can use together.
It’s not just another dating book. Instead, it’s a fun and entertaining story that can hopefully facilitate discussion regarding what it means to truly demonstrate chivalry in our relationships.
So what do YOU think? Is chivalry on the brink of extinction? What are some ways we can make sure that we don’t lose it?
For love & Honor Celebration Tour
To celebrate her tour, Jody is giving away all three books in the Noble Knights Series!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!