Reviewed by Margaret Donsbach Tomlinson
Knight of Love is a steamy historical romance with a far-fetched plot and a sparring pair who are, of course, irresistably attracted to each other despite all obstacles. An unusual aspect of this romance is its setting: Germany during the ill-fated 1848 Revolution. An underpinning of reasonably solid research provides information about the grievances of the German peasantry and a few liberal-minded aristocrats against the princes whose near-absolute rule of their territories went unchecked by Germany's weak central government. The doomed rebellion sought to reduce the princes' power by unifying the nation under a strong central government that protected the people's rights.
The novel opens with the heroine, Lenora, a plucky if immature young woman raised in England by her English father and German mother, receiving a brutal flogging on the orders of her sadistic fiancé, prince of the fictional German principality of Rotenburg-Gruselstadt. Grusel means "horror," and the horrors of Lenora's situation are vividly portrayed before she eventually escapes, only to fall into the clutches of an aristocratic rescuer she finds insufferable and insufferably attractive in the classic historical romance tradition. Although she has serious qualms about getting involved with another man, post-traumatic stress syndrome does not rear its ugly head. Some very explicit sex scenes will likely be exciting for readers who enjoy the idea of bondage role-playing with the woman in the dominant role, and who don't mind the implausibility of these leisurely, playfully seductive scenes taking place in a camp of men at war.
Although the 1848 Revolution failed, Knight of Love manages a happy ending for Lenora and her devoted, long-suffering swain - but only after a final obstacle on English soil, resolved in a highly dramatic, if credibility-challenging, manner. (2014, 386 pages)More about Knight of Love at Amazon.com