Review: Dark Maiden by Lindsay Townsend

Dark Maiden by Lindsay Townsend
Release Date: June 13, 2013
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave Blush
File size: 275 KB
Source: book was provided by the publisher for review

 

 

The 1300s are a time of pestilence and unease, plagued not just by disease but by demons and the restless dead. Yolande wanders England and Wales, armed with her blessed bow and sacred herbs, laying the spirits to rest and driving the demons away. She’s bound to serve for a time of seven—though she knows not what that means. Geraint the Welshman travels the countryside, juggling and tumbling to earn his keep. When he meets Yolande, he’s caught by her fierce yet sweet nature and vows to stay by her side. As they journey closer to Yolande’s final trial and face foes ever more cunning and dangerous, Geraint and Yolande have only their mutual love and trust to help them survive. Inside Scoop: Yolande and Geraint live in a medieval world dominated by Catholicism and mistrust for an interracial couple—Geraint is Welsh and Yolande is half Ethiopian.

 

Review: Well, I have to say this is one of the most interesting historical paranormal romances I’ve ever read. Yolande is told she must remain a maiden, for a time of seven in order to prevent being possessed by a demon. She is determined to bide her time performing her duties as an exorcist so she can consider taking a husband. She doesn’t expect to meet Geraint, a Welshman. Geriant will test her resolve to remain a maiden.

One could argue this couple fell in love at first sight. From their first meeting onward they were virtually inseparable. Geraint became Yolande’s protector and championed her as well has holding her in the highest regard and with the utmost respect.

He doesn’t, however, hold much respect for the church and is often at odds with their view of things. Understandable since under ordinary circumstances they would not have been so lenient with Yolande and her special abilities since they were viewed as pagan.

Yolande is not the only one with special abilities. Geraint is a “sensitive” and this helps him in some circumstances, although as with any such “gift” it can be trying at times too.

The main worry for Yolande and Geraint is finding out just what the meaning is behind the “for a time of seven” because Yolande’s father was an exorcist and he had been married. Eventually, this is figured out and Yolande and Geriant will be able to start a life together. But, this doesn’t mean they are off the hook with performing their duties and they find themselves in a very odd situation.

Yolande is one sharp cookie and can see a scam a mile off. Her fear, though, is that she will someday encounter the “undead”, as in a Vampire. Due to the pestilence, the death rate in these times were alarmingly high and this led to rumors of spirits being “restless”.

Since Yolande is half Ethiopian, her skin is quite dark and she is an exotic beauty. For safety purposes she wears her mother’s wedding band and when she begins her travels with Geriant it is presumed they are married and because we are talking about the 1300’s and a time of many superstitions, the two are often met with distrust.

The dialogue is really interesting. The couple who are obviously very deeply in love, do not have the usual courtship and often trade barbs and have a really funny banter between them. Although there are moments of trial and misunderstandings, mostly this couple is very stable and strong with one another, making this a real treat. I like angst to a certain degree, but the older I get the less this appeals to me. I liked both of these characters and enjoyed watching them fall in love. The author remained true to the time period and obeys the common laws of the era as well and the dialect.

My only complaint is that the story moved along at a slow pace and there some lulls here and there. Other than that I have to applaud this author for taking on what must have been a challenge in writing about an interracial couple in Medieval times, and by adding paranormal elements in on top of that. This was a fascinating read , truly off the the beaten path and a breath of fresh air!

Favorite Quote: “You scold with one side of your tongue and caress with the other” – Geraint to Yolande

 

Julie