It’s 1170 and Dermot MacMurrough is desperate to regain control of his kingdom from rival Rory O’Connor. He pledges his daughter and the lands she’ll inherit from him to the powerful Norman earl Richard de Clare. A proud Irish Princess, Eve (Aoife) is none too thrilled with the match but princesses must do what princesses must do and she eventually weds him. As desirable as Richard finds Eve, he still yearns for his lost love Rosamund Clifford, who King Henry II took as his mistress. Can he forget Rosamund in Eve’s embraces? Can Eve learn to love Richard, hated Norman or not? Will her father’s constant betrayals and shenanigans keep the two apart? Can their marriage withstand the hatred the Irish have for the Norman invaders as well as the bigotry the Normans carry against the Irish?
I found this to be a light, entertaining read with a nice blend of history and romance. The sex was fairly tame compared to what’s in today’s romances and outside of a couple of anachronisms and a bit too modern speech out of Eve at times it was good fun. The Rosamund Clifford twist was an interesting one, and gives a good basis for some of the *tensions* between Henry and his otherwise loyal Earl. The story is based on people and events that really happened and for those who are fans of Elizabeth Chadwick’s The Greatest Knight and The Scarlet Lion should note that Richard and Eve are the parents of Isabel, who went on to marry my favorite hunk in history, William Marshal. Not the greatest book ever written but still entertaining when you’re in the mood for a lighter read and a bit of romance. 3.5/5 stars.