I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Longbow Girl by Linda Davies
Published by The Chicken House on February 23rd 2016
A stunningly exciting and dramatic story set in the wilds of the Welsh mountains, where the brave and beautiful Merry Owen, the Longbow Girl, travels back in time to the autocratic kingdom of King Henry VIII to save her ancestors.
Steeped in history, ancient lore and crackling with tension between the central characters Merry and James, Longbow Girl explores the themes of who we are and who we can become when fighting for those we love and for our very lives. Are we prisoners of our history or can we break free? Can we become all that we need to be to meet the ultimate challenge of life and death in the King’s Tournament and in the dungeons of the Black Castle?
Longbow Girl threw me off at first. I was surprised to see a modern day girl learning how to use a longbow and with the Wales setting it seemed old-timey until talk of soccer and cell phones came into play. Merry is carrying on her long family tradition of taking up the Longbow. For hundreds of years there has always been a Longbowman in her family, part of the sacred oath given to the King in the 1300s. Her family, the Owens earned their land by one of their ancestors saving the King. Unfortunately the land they earned was part of the de Courcys land and they still hold a grudge against their family even in the 21st century. Merry is best friends with their only son James, who is obsessed with soccer and trying to get into a contract even though his family is against it.
Merry’s family is having problems making ends meet, especially after the de Courcys hounds killed their mare, as they breed ponies. When Merry is coming home one day she finds a book in what looks to be a burial site and brings it home. She has a bad omen about it and it causes a lot of trouble right away, but visiting professors think it is valuable and lost stories of old. Of course, Merry sees this as a chance to save her family. The book slowly is being translated and looked into the value of it and she catches the bit of a riddle about how to find fortune. Merry follows this path and ends up finding something even more rare – a way into the past.
Although the book was a bit slow to start, I loved the setting and characters and easily was grabbed about 50 pages in, where most of the drama starts. I really enjoyed seeing Merry and James interact and was happy to see some budding romance that was founded in friendship. The action and adventure was exciting, the twists also surprised me, as history seemed to predict Merry’s future actions. Quite an enjoyable read with lots of drama and action.
For those who love time-travel, daring heroines and a bit of star-crossed romance, you should read this book.