Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. There was a mention of author Emma Drummond over at Historical Fiction Online and as I love stories of the British Raj and the East I went perusing the library’s catalog. As usual, King County is near perfect and there were several to choose from. I’m starting with these two:
Because of a scandal back in England, Captain Rowan DeMayne, son of an earl, was forced to join the 43rd Light Dragoons, whose seven years in India were mainly spent parading in splendid uniforms on matched chestnut horses. Meanwhile, 18-year-old Mary, widowed twice, is determined to improve her lot, and will eventually become lady’s maid to Rowan’s “beautiful shell” of a wife. Then at last–the 43rd is going to war! Rowan joyfully announces this on horseback to a stunned ballroom. While the over 600 men and 750 fine horses journey through exotic and dangerous terrain to relieve the decimated troops in the Crimea, there’ll be a cholera epidemic and sandstorms, deaths and one pathetic desertion, and Rowan will battle storms within: marital disillusion; nightmare guilt about his (honorable) refusal to prevent the torture death of a bandit’s girl; doubts about the glory of war; and his inexplicable attraction to the lowly Mary.
Set in India at the time of the Raj, Beyond All Frontiers is a mesmerizing historical novel that seems to sum up an entire era through the lives of its characters. The story of a resourceful, courageous woman, Charlotte Scott, it is also the story of Britain’s first war with Afghanistan, which ended with a brutal massacre in the Khyber Pass. And it is a novel about the Empire: how the British gained it – and why they would lose it at last.
A love story of extraordinary depth and power, Beyond All Frontiers is a masterful combination of history, courage, surprise, and passion – a novel that makes us hope desperately to see the hero and heroine learn to care for each other as much as we care for them.
That last one sounds rather similar to The Far Pavilions although I suspect there’s not going to be an Ash and Juli in this one. What are you checking out this week?