Series: Wolves of Brittany #2
Genres: Historical Romance
Published by Kindle Worlds
Released on September 4, 2016
A WARRIOR NEVER SURRENDERS… HER HEART
As the epic struggle to rule Brittany continues, Ivar the Red unexpectedly finds himself in charge of the Norse army after his brother, Valdrik, is severely wounded. Intensely loyal, Ivar is prepared to do everything to see their victory through—except taking a Breton wife. Nevertheless, Lady Emma of Quimper fascinates him more than any woman he’s ever known. Although her highborn status protects her from bondage, Ivar vows to claim her as his own.
Lady Emma of Quimper is determined to defend her home as fiercely as any knight, until she opens the gates to save an old friend from the clutches of the Vikings. But her trust has been misplaced, and she finds herself at the mercy of a bloodthirsty heathen—Ivar the Red. Pride keeps Emma from fully surrendering to the conquering lord of Quimper, even when she realizes he’s not quite the devil she imagined.
Ivar has always enjoyed a challenge, especially one from a beautiful Amazon with the heart of a warrior. Though she defies him at every turn, Ivar deals gently with Emma—until she betrays his trust and escapes. Refusing to be made a fool, Ivar sets out to recover his captive who is determined to return to Quimper at the head of an army. When Ivar finds her in the clutches of death, he suddenly realizes she matters far more than his injured pride and sexual desire. He will do anything to save her and give up everything to make her his.
The Wolves of Brittany series continues on with Ivar’s story. I really liked Ivar in the first book and the scene where he first encounters Lady Emma is memorable to say the least so I dove in with great anticipation and was not disappointed.
Ivar the Red is book two in the series. I would say it could be read standalone because of all the backtracking to scenes from Breton Wolfe, but the summary scenes painted things in a slightly different light when Ivar is doing the describing and narrating rather than the earlier hero and heroine, Valdrick and Adele. Better to get these in order, I think.
The Ninth Century storyline doesn’t change from the first book of the three half brothers- Vikings- who are given the land of Brittany in a treaty between the French King and their uncle if they can conquer Brittany and hold it. In book one, it was Valdrik conquering the Duchy of Vannes and now they have moved on to the lands of Quimper and fight the Count, Emma’s father. Political intrigue surrounds them as the other lands of France either wait in anticipation or plot for what they can get out of Brittany’s fall.
Ivar the Red was a much more exciting and layered book for me. There is the tempestuous romance and the growing understanding between two people from different cultures, but there are other schemes afoot. Gisela, the conniving and grasping woman from book one, is back and worse than ever even as the intro to others who would take what Ivar and his brothers have claimed. I love how the series seems to be building in tension and leading toward a huge series climax.
In the beginning, I was enthusiastic because Ivar and Emma are a fiery pair and that excitement never diminished. This pair had chemistry- or maybe I should say alchemy since its medieval times. I loved them and came to anticipate their confrontations that just crackled with attraction and anger.
Ivar, for a conquering Norseman, was rather patient and gentle because Emma sure pushed all his buttons and tended to be unrealistic because she was so sheltered. I liked Emma, but Ivar was right- she needed her britches tanned a few times. She would just shoot off her mouth or leap impulsively into action. She’s mean to Adele and doesn’t seem to get what’s going down even when more than one person explains it to her. She is dangerously naive and sheltered at the same time which caused her to not have an accurate assessment when she’s working her mini-rebellions and schemes. I don’t mean to sound like Emma is unlikable or even stupid. She’s not even close, but yes, I was glad when she does eventually clue in. This pair were a great match. The author wrote them with strength, passion, vulnerability, and flaws that they had to work through. And, I did enjoy the way Ivar introduced Emma to the pleasure of passion.
And, now, we head into Bjorn’s story. I have seen him as the dark horse through the series because he’s quieter and gives little away. I think he’s going to surprise me, nicely. This is a perfect series for those who want some fantastic action and passion in medieval times, but need a quick read with good development.
My thanks to the author for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #43 HR
Literary Pickers #39
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