Friday, February 15, 2008

Jill Barnett: Wild

Wild: C
Teleri of the Woods & Roger FitzAlan

Wales is a wild place in 1280. Sir Roger FitzAlan is there by order of the King, commanded to build a mighty walled castle to defend England's borders. But the site the King has chosen has a strange circle of massive blue stones and when Sir Roger and his men arrive, a beautiful young woman is praying within the ancient circle.

Even more arresting, the young woman flees from Roger's men astride a sleek black Arab stallion stolen from Roger's best friend nearly five years before. Roger gives chase and before long, the black Arab and Roger's mount leave his men-at-arms far behind. When the woman disappears into a thick wood, Roger follows her alone and quickly loses her. But someone else is in the deep woods, and that someone is intent on killing Roger.

Teleri of the Woods is delighted to have lost her pursuer and it isn't until the following day, when she returns to search for her lost pouch, that she discovers Roger, barely alive, and struggles to rescue him. Roger awakens in her bed, cranky, furious, and too ill to leave. Forced to remain with the beautiful young woman, he slowly becomes aware of the world about him in a way he has never known. Despite Teleri's lack of gold and possessions, she is rich in knowledge and appreciation of life.

As Teleri teaches Roger about her life, he's forced to confront his lust for her and his prior beliefs about love. But their time together in the magic woods must come to an end and when it does, what will Roger do about the forbidden love that once ruled him? How will Teleri cope with life beyond her enchanted woods? And how will they solve the dark mysteries that swirl around Roger and threaten both their lives?... (amazon)

Teleri's story is kind-of Sleeping-Beauty-esque but without the great singing skills (and the whole pricking her finger deal.) She finds Sir Roger FitzAlan, a knight, badly injured and nurses him back to health. Roger, a redhead (thought I’d mention it), has been burned by his previous love and takes him some time to appreciate and fall in love with Teleri.

Cleo and her man from the previous novel, Wonderful, make an appearance – and the “crazy old woman” from the first story is actually Teleri’s grandmother.

This story is filled with two minor mysteries – the question of who tried to kill Roger and the unsolved mystery of who Teleri’s father is.

This book is nice… but nothing spectacular. I also don’t like redheaded heroes much. And I wonder how Teleri is able to communicate and behave so well with Roger when she has spent her entire life along in the woods. Granted, she did have interactions with her grandmother, but really, is it plausible to think that she’d be able to magically fall in love?

Oh wait, this is a romance… (lol.)

However, I did really like her (er, Roger's) horse...

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