Monday, November 16, 2020

Book Review: Besotted by Jody Hedlund


About the Book

In a land where being the fairest maiden is a curse . . .

A young queen trying to stay alive until she comes of age to rule, and a prince turned into a pauper.

Queen Aurora of Mercia has spent her entire life deep in Inglewood Forest, hiding from Warwick’s Queen Margery, who seeks her demise. As the time draws near for Aurora to take the throne, she happens upon a handsome woodcutter. Although friendship with outsiders is forbidden and dangerous, she cannot stay away from the charming stranger.

Only two months away from completing his royal testing, Prince Kresten of Scania is ready to be finished with the poverty and hardships of being a woodcutter. When he meets a beautiful peasant woman, he doesn’t plan to fall in love, especially when he must soon leave and return to his homeland.

As Queen Margery’s forces close in, Aurora finds herself in mortal danger. Kresten knows a future with Aurora is impossible, but he is desperate to save her and bring an end to the queen’s threat. To do so, he joins the ultimate battle against the evil queen, risking everything, including his chance at true love.

The real Sleeping Beauty story.

My Review

Besotted was the perfect conclusion to the Fairest Maidens Young Adult series by Jody Hedlund.  Aurora and Kresten's story was believable and heart-wrenching, and played flawlessly into the overarching conflict introduced earlier in the series.  Both Aurora and Kresten were honorable, and dedicated to the ultimate goal of doing what was best for their respective countries.  Their personal growth was critical to their success in meeting those goals.

The book began as a pleasant boy-meets-girl story, but when the action and suspense began building, it didn't stop until the final page.  I thoroughly enjoyed this story.

Besotted is written in the first person, from both Aurora's and Kresten's perspectives.  Different fonts for each narrator help identify the speaker.  And although it is the third in the series, it can be read as a stand-alone novel.  I was glad to have read Beholden previously for the setting and history.  

This is a wonderful, clean YA read that an adult reader of Christian fiction would enjoy, as well.  If you need more medieval romance in your life, I highly recommend this book and the entire Fairest Maidens series.

I received an e-ARC of this book from the author, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

JODY HEDLUND is a bestselling and award-winning author who loves fairy tales and happily-ever-afters. She makes her home in Midland, MI, with her husband and five children. When she's not writing another of her page-turning stories, you can usually find her sipping coffee, eating chocolate, and reading.

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