~ About the Book ~
Mercy Lytton, a scout with keen eyesight raised among the Mohawks, and Elias Dubois, a condemned traitor working both sides of the conflict, must join together to get a shipment of gold safely into British hands.
A brand new series for fans of all things related to history, romance, adventure, faith, and family trees.
A War-Torn Countryside Is No Place for a Lady
Mercy Lytton is a lady like none other. Raised amongst the Mohawks, she straddles two cultures, yet each are united in one cause. . .to defeat the French. Born with a rare gift of unusually keen eyesight, she is chosen as a scout to accompany a team of men on a dangerous mission. Yet it is not her life that is threatened. It is her heart. Condemned as a traitor, Elias Dubois faces the gallows. At the last minute, he is offered his freedom if he consents to accompany a stolen shipment of French gold to a nearby fort—but he is the one they stole it from in the first place. It turns out that the real thief is the beguiling woman, Mercy Lytton, for she steals his every waking thought. Can love survive divided loyalties in a backcountry wilderness?
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: #3 Daughters of the Mayflower
Release date: 15 May 2018
~ Excerpt ~
The general stopped just paces behind the woman. “Miss Lytton, Captain Prinn, allow me to introduce the last member of your team, Mr. Elias Dubois. Keep an eye on your weapons, for under no circumstance is this man to be given one.”
Anger scorched a blaze up his neck, erasing any memory of his earlier cold dousing. A man couldn’t survive without a gun and a blade, especially not in the company of this sorry-looking lot. They would be lucky to make it to nightfall. His hands clenched at his sides, itching for the feel of a musket stock or knife hilt. “That is a mistake, General. Unarmed, I am of no use to anyone.”
“As I said, you’re expendable if need be. Godspeed.” The general wheeled about.
So did the woman. Brown eyes bored into his, just about level with his own. This close, she was taller than he’d first credited. Dark of hair, darker of gaze, with cheekbones high and eyes large and wide enough to dive in and swim around. He might almost place her as a native—were it not for skin so fair, it glowed soft and white. He sucked in a breath. By all the blessed stars above, how had he ever thought her to be mannish?
“Ma’am.” He dipped his head in greeting.
Her lips parted, full and surprisingly deep in color, yet she said nothing.
“Mr. Dubois.” The man behind her stepped forward and offered a hand. “I’m Matthew Prinn.”
“Elias, please. If we are to pose as a family, it would be best to be on a first-name basis.” He clasped the fellow’s hand and measured his character by grip alone. Strong. Unwavering. Calloused and hard. But not overpowering, revealing a kind of stalwart humility.
“I s’pose you’re right.” The man let go and nudged the woman with his elbow. “This here is Mercy.”
Elias clamped his jaw. An apt name, for Lord have mercy, she captivated like no other woman, and to his shame, he’d known quite a few.
She lifted her chin. “Daylight’s wasting. We should be on our way.”
She whirled so fast, her long braid slapped his arm. Her skirts swished as she stalked toward the front wagon.
Elias’s brows shot up. There was nothing skittish about this one.
Prinn’s gray eyes followed the woman while his jaw worked. “Mercy can be a little . . . Let’s just say she is a fiddle string wound tight and about to break. Might wanna ride quiet for a while. If she snaps, it will leave a mark. She’ll get over it soon enough. Rufus! Hike yerself up to the seat. I will take first scout.” He turned, leaving Elias standing alone at the rear, caught between the empty gallows and the fort gates swinging wide, gaping open to a wilderness filled with danger.
Elias cracked his neck one way then the other. Had he escaped one sure death only to face another?
~ Review ~
What a fantastic adventure this was! I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this story, from the plot that left me constantly wondering what was coming next, to the pairing of two strong lead characters, to the wonderful word smithery that brought both the story and the setting to life.
Mercy Lytton is the kind of heroine I love to read about. She’s strong, self-sufficient, intelligent, and feisty, but in a very down-to-earth way. Even more than that, I loved the way Elias won her over by giving her the space she needed and by respecting her abilities. That’s not to say they didn’t butt heads (after all, where’s the fun in strong characters who don’t butt heads?), but I loved that the friction between them wasn’t deliberately antagonistic so much as naturally arising from having two strong personalities thrown together in an endeavour fraught with danger.
There was a fantastic sense of setting to the story, too, with the majority of it taking place in the great outdoors. I’m not much of a camper in real life, and I can’t even imagine how I would handle a trip like this, but for some reason I love it when God’s creation—and all the inherent beauty and danger that can be found in it—plays a large role in a story. Perhaps it’s because it gives me the chance to experience it without giving up the comfort of my own home. Who knows? But it may as well have been a character in its own right in this story, bringing challenges, danger, and often the unexpected.
And although this is only my second novel by Michelle Griep, I am very quickly becoming a fan of her way with words. Take for example this description of Rufus Bragg, often a thorn in the side of group transporting the gold: Rufus Bragg wasn’t much of a man, for he barely held on to sixteen years. So gawkily built was he, his bones put up a fair fight to support his garments. Were it not for the knobs of his joints, he’d have to tie the shirt to his skin to keep it from falling off…Not only did he own no manners, it seemed he never intended to purchase any. It’s like a description straight out of Dickens. I love it!
If you’re looking for a historical romance with plenty of adventure, this is it!
I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not influenced the content of my review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.
~ Guest Post from Michelle Griep ~
A Visit to Fort Niagara
Whether you’re a history buff or don’t have a clue what the French and Indian War was about, there’s a destination in upstate New York that’s fun to visit for the whole family . . .
My husband and I made the trek to this living history site last summer. I had no idea what to expect, other than what was advertised as a “reenactment camp.” For those who don’t know, this is when volunteers who adore history come together to present a particular event, such as a battle. These people usually choose a real person from the era upon whom they fashion their modern day persona. They dress, speak, eat and live as that person might have. Here I am with some of my new friends:
Generally around the 4th of July, the 1759 Battle of Fort Niagara is recreated in a 3-day extravaganza of soldiers, muskets, canons and an entire market place to peruse selling period-related items.
Some of the things that surprised me about stepping back into the mid-eighteenth century were:
- How much smoke muskets kick out
- Once the battle begins, it’s hard to see who is your enemy or ally
- Canons are really loud
- Everything wasn’t as black and white as it seems in pictures—gowns and uniforms were very colorful
What makes this event so spectacular is that they take the entire 20 day siege and condense it into 3 days. If you visit every day, you’ll see and experience exactly what happened. You’ll be there to see the British, Colonial regulars and Iroquois allies sneak out of the tree line to shoot at some French soldiers who were pigeon hunting just outside the fort. You’ll hear the war whoops and barrage of angry French epithets roaring on the air. You’ll even get a chance to taste some of their food as you wander around inside the French Encampment set up inside the fort walls.
To experience a bit of the danger, sights and sounds of what Mercy and Elias lived through in The Captured Bride, Fort Niagara really is a fantastic place to visit.
~ Previous Books in the Series ~
~ About the Author ~
Michelle Griep has been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She seeks to glorify God in all that she writes—except for that graffiti phase she went through as a teenager. She resides in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, where she teaches history and writing classes for a local high school co-op. An Anglophile at heart, she runs away to England every chance she gets, under the guise of research. Really, though, she’s eating excessive amounts of scones while rambling around a castle. Michelle is a member of ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) and MCWG (Minnesota Christian Writers Guild). Keep up with her adventures at her blog “Writer off the Leash”, visit www.michellegriep.com or stalk her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest.
~ Giveaway ~
To celebrate her tour, Michelle is giving away a grand prize of a signed copy of The Captured Bride and a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card!!
Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/d06e/the-captured-bride-celebration-tour-giveaway