Last Updated on Monday, 30 July 2012 09:56 Posted by Clash Thursday, 09 August 2012 09:30
Reviewed by *Katie McCurdy for Legacy of a Writer
What she sees in secret, she may not tell.
Juliana St. John is the daughter of a prosperous knight. Though her family wants her to marry the son of her father's business partner, circumstances set her on a course toward the court of Henry VIII and his last wife, Kateryn Parr.
Sir Thomas Seymour, uncle of the current heir, Prince Edward, returns to Wiltshire to tie up his concerns with Juliana's father's estate and sees instantly that Juliana would fit into the household of the woman he loves, Kateryn Parr. Her mother agrees to have her placed in Parr's household for "finishing" and Juliana goes, though perhaps reluctantly.
For she knows a secret. She has been given the gift of prophecy, and in one of her visions she has seen Sir Thomas shredding the dress of the king's daughter, the lady Elizabeth, to perilous consequence.
As Juliana learns the secrets of King Henry VIII's court, she faces threats and opposition, learning truths about her own life that will undo everything she holds dear.
Sandra Byrd is making me fall in love with the Tudor Era! In this next book in her Ladies-In-Waiting series, this talented author returns back into Henry VIII’s courts and delves into the life of Kateryn Parr, last wife to the king. I enjoyed The Secret Keeper even more then the first book in the series—and I really liked To Die For, as all can see from my review!
The characters were, once again, wonderfully depicted and portrayed. The intrigue of court made for many interesting character—I can’t tell you how many times I would have liked to slap some of them! I also thought that it was really neat that Meg, from To Die For, made a small appearance in this book. Amazing how lives intersect and entwine! Like everyone else (I am sure!) I really grew to like Jamie and his undying love for the main character, Juliana. The ending made me so happy, I couldn’t help smiling like a fool! So sweet. So long looked for. So deserved!
Byrd’s writing blew me away, personally! I felt like I was reading a book actually written in that time period—the English and manner of speech was so…Tudor! I totally loved that about The Secret Keeper! Not only was I transported back in time by her intriguing story plot and realistic characters, but also her period-accurate way of writing.
I learn so much from reading Byrd’s books. She has this wonderful way of merging fiction with fact so that I find myself learning so much history, but enjoying a work of fiction at the same time. All that said, I personally would only recommend The Secret Keeper for mature, adult readers, as there is a rather descriptive and violent rape scene in the book.
Seeing what Byrd has done with To Die For and now The Secret Keeper, I cannot wait to read Roses Have Thorns, which will be about Anne Boleyn’s daughter, Elizabeth I, next year. How I will last till then, I don’t know!
* I reviewed this book for the Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours. Thanks to the author for giving me a review copy. It was not required that I give a positive review, but solely to express my own thoughts and opinions of this book, which I have done.