Book review: Snow in July by Kim Iverson Headlee

Title: Snow in July
Author: Kim Iverson Headlee
Published: July 7, 2014
Publisher: Pendragon Cove Press

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Sir Robert Alain de Bellencombre has been granted what every man wants: a rich English estate in exchange for his valiant service at the Battle of Hastings. To claim this reward, the Norman knight must wed the estate’s Saxon heiress. Most men would leap at such an opportunity, but for Alain, who broke his vow to his dying mother by failing to protect his youngest brother in battle, it means facing more easily broken vows. But when rumors of rampant thievery, dangerous beasts, and sorcery plaguing a neighboring estate reach his ears, nothing will make him shirk duty to king and country when people’s lives stand at risk. He assumes the guise of a squire to scout the land, its problems, and its lady.

Lady Kendra of Edgarburh has been granted what no woman wants: a forced marriage to an enemy who may be kith or kin to the man who murdered her beloved brother. Compounding her anguish is her failure to awaken the miraculous healing gift bequeathed by their late mother in time to save his life. Although with his dying breath, he made her promise to seek happiness above all, Kendra vows that she shall find neither comfort nor love in the arms of a Norman…unless it snows in July.

Alain is smitten by Lady Kendra from the first moment of their meeting; Kendra feels the forbidden allure of the handsome and courtly Norman “squire.” But a growing evil overshadows everyone, invoking dark forces and ensnaring Kendra in a plot to overthrow the king Alain is oath-bound to serve. Kendra and Alain face a battle unlike any other as their honor, their love, their lives, and even their very souls lie in the balance.

I am so very much in love with this story. The author weaves a tight, complex story full of details and lovely images. The narration makes this so believable and it really transported me into the story. Robert is one of my favorite male characters I’ve read in a while. Kendra holds her own in the story against Robert and as her own character. The story is tightly woven, full of mystery and intrigue. It’s fast paced and kept my attention throughout, and I found myself wanting more–not that the story was unfinished, but I didn’t want it to end.

There’s magic, fantastical beasts, great characters, amazing story telling and a pair of star-crossed lovers, who so desperately need to be together. There’s something for everyone in this book, and I cannot recommend it enough. I’m really glad I took a chance on it, I’ve fallen in love with it.


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