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The Hidden Will of the Dragon Paperback – September 13, 2010
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"Charlie Courtland takes you back to the late 15th and early 16th century...You will see the blood spatters and will feel the actual weight of the horror as it unfolds." --Leslie Wright - Blogcritics
"Courtland has created an enthralling tale where history meets legend and romance. An adventure that will not soon be forgotten. It will linger in your memory, drawing you back to the moments captured within the story." --Book Noise
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Hidden Will of the Dragon is told in flashbacks by narrator Amara, who is lady in waiting to Elizabeth, otherwise known as the Blood Countess. The twist to the history is that Amara is providing some explanation for Elizabeth's behavior, which rumors to include torture and murder.
Once again, the characters practically come to life. Charlie Courtland is a masterful storyteller, managing to weave emotion into her characters. Amara and Elizabeth in turn evoked emotion from me. I really enjoyed this retelling of Elizabeth Bathory. I not only liked the journey, but I liked the ending as well.
“You do not believe the allegations were true? Kate asked.
“Oh, it isn’t for me to judge! History says it is so, so what is a person to do?”
I had an affinity with Amara and appreciated her desire to tell her side of a story no one else knew. I liked how the story was about the Countess and yet not entirely. I also enjoyed how realistic the setting was. Although, I’ve never been to Venice, it was apparent Courtland had been. I could feel Amara's world in her words.