Elizabethan Historical Romance
After aiding in the capture of the flagship Rosario and helping to defeat the Spanish Armada, Sir Henry Bainbridge is set to make his mark on the world and strengthen his position as a man of authority. Now in charge of the Spanish prisoners, Henry must negotiate their return to Spain and manage the care of his people.
However, when he comes across a woman amongst the survivors, his future plans are put on hold. The exotic beauty draws him in and his honour will not let him doing anything other than protect her. Henry takes her into his home and places her under house arrest. He can only hope his principles are enough to protect her from his desires…
In a time when small differences spark fear into the heart of many, Antonia finds herself drawn into a battle between a zealous priest, a discontented population and the most honourable man she’s ever met. Nothing can ever come of their attraction, not while he’s holding her father prisoner and not when so many differences divide them.
Or can it?
Sweet Captor/Captive Romance ***** (FIVE STARS)
Samantha Holt’s latest release, Knight’s Captive, is a lovely romantic read. The narrative takes place in 1588 against the backdrop of the attempted invasion of England by the formidable Spanish Armada. The safety of the country is in doubt and the Protestant queen Elizabeth is keen to put down any possibility of Papist plots, which may aid the enemy.
The hero Sir Henry is stunned to find a young woman aboard the Spanish flagship that has been captured. Antonia is the daughter of the captain and whilst the captured Spanish crew are taken into custody and sequestered in the local village, she is taken to Henry’s ancestral home under house arrest, her fate, like that of her compatriots dependent on diplomatic negotiations between the two warring countries.
Henry is immediately drawn to the young woman admiring her spirit, bravery and beauty. He is perplexed at what would prompt someone of the fair sex to risk their life aboard the ship. There is clearly a lot more to Antonia than meets the eye and as the days pass and the couple spend time together, they begin to mean a lot more to each other than captor and captive. Yet what chance of a HEA do they have, when Antonia is effectively an enemy and a pawn in the ensuing diplomatic relations? She is a Catholic reviled by his queen and those like the local zealot priest, who would see the Catholic faith and their followers destroyed. Moreover Antonia has her own personal demons to contend with.
I immediately rooted for the heroine and admired her for her spirit, strength and compassion. A young widow she has a dark past which is revealed as the plot unfolds. Henry is an honourable man and determined that no harm will befall Antonia whilst she is under his protection, even from his own desires….. The romance is overall a sweet one, although it does have some sensual scenes. I particularly liked the sexual tension between the couple as they both seek to deny their growing feelings for each other, in the belief that nothing can come of a liaison which could end in tragedy. It is a page turning read as the themes woven into the novel come together the couple must fight more than their own feelings before their fates are decided.
I loved reading a novel set in this time period and the descriptions of the devastation of the Spanish flagship at sea, village life and Henry’s household evoked the period beautifully. It was all the more fascinating as instead of being set at court, it focused on the countryside, where the impact of the attempted invasion and its aftermath on the local populace and the plight of those who still practice the Catholic faith is explored.
A super read for lovers of historical romance.
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