In 1072 Castle Kettwyck, Kathryn de St. Marie hopes to marry for love until Scots led by Lord Ferguson raid the keep and kidnap her. At Braxton Kell on the Borders, Saxon Lord Edric and his soldiers attack Ferguson and his men for cutting through his land. Ferguson's men have already destroyed much of the keep with their raids. At the same time, Edric's Norman wife Cecily is about to give birth though she does not want the child, hates her spouse and his people, and wants to go home.
Edric rescues Kathryn from Ferguson, killing him just before he tried to rape the Norman. Edric takes Kate to his keep. Though he is wary of Norman women, he also finds he wants her. Kate thinks Edric is what she wants in a husband, but he loathes Normans and is married that is until he learns his wife died giving birth to his son Aidan who has no wet-nurse to care for him. Kate ends up with the role as Aidan takes to her holding him and her using an artificial device. Kate says she will stay until he finds a wet nurse then will continue to nearby Evesham Bridge Abbey as she cannot go home. She hides form him the knowledge that her dad is lord of Kettwyck. As they fall in love treachery threatens both their lives.
The lead couple and most of the support cast are nice likable individuals who bring to life the first decade after the Norman Conquest. The story line is action-packed, but emphasizes the distrust between the Normans, Saxons, and Scots. Though the villain is obvious and his demise too easy, Conqueror romance fans will immensely appreciate Margo Maguire fine historical.
A CAPTIVE LONGING:
To burn with passion...to surrender to the power of a man's desire...Kathryn de St. Marie's years in a French convent have taught her such things are forbidden. Still the chaste Norman beauty dreams of a soul-stirring love. But cruel destiny intrudes when she is taken prisoner by Scot barbarians-though a kinder fate intervenes when she is rescued by proud, haunted Edric of Braxton Fell, a bitter Saxon lord displaced by Norman rule.
Though he despises the conquerors, Edric can sense that Kathryn is different-gentle and giving, yet possessing a fire that enflames Edric in turn-and he grudgingly allows her into his broken life. For Kathryn's capture has tainted her the eyes of her people, and she can never again return home. Her future rests in the strong hands of her enemy champion...and in a long-cherished dream of a perfect seduction and a dangerous, rapturous love.
I'm not sure if this is the first or second in a set, but THE BRIDE HUNT is Kathryn's sister's story. They can be read separate of each other, which is nice since I don't know which comes first. I recommend both books. Both are wonderful. I was hoping that the two books would be better tied together and that the sisters finally find out about each other, but I guess it leaves us to think of their happily ever after. It's a great book. The heroine is tough and willing to learn new things. Highly recommend.