Blacksmith Lachlann MacKerron has loved beautiful and wise Eva MacArthur, daughter of the clan chieftain, since they were children. What he doesn't know is that she loves him, too. Believing that a future for them is impossible, Lachlann leaves Scotland to fight with Joan of Arc in France. When he returns--bitter, disillusioned, scarred, and doubting his ability to craft the miraculous swords he once created--he learns that Eva is in desperate need of his help. Her father is dead, one brother imprisoned and another outlawed, and her home threatened by her evil fiancé's soldiers. Legend says Eva must save her beloved Innisfarna with the power of her sword, and only Lachlann can forge a Sword of Light. But beneath the surface of the warrior and the bladesmith lie a man and a woman, deeply in love and desperate to save their clan--and find a way to spend their lives together.
Medieval Scotland comes to life in this latest novel from Susan King. Descriptions of the Highland's hills and forests, lochs and isles, hamlets and citizens are rich with the color of a time long past. The story employs the magic of fairy lore, the power of legend, and the fascinating details of the ancient craft of bladesmithing in a plot driven by human greed and obsession. Expertly crafted and written, The Sword Maiden is King at her best. Don't miss it. --Lois Faye Dyer
From Publishers Weekly
Against the backdrop of the Hundred Years' War, King (The Swan Maiden, etc.) deftly spins a mystical Highland romance between the daughter of a Scottish clan leader and a humble blacksmith. Feisty Eva MacArthur is the guardian of Innisfarna, an island that is purported to possess fairy magic. Eva's status and her precious holdings have earned her the unwanted attentions of Colin Campbell, a land-greedy clan chief who has close ties to the English king. When Eva's oldest brother is imprisoned and her father falsely executed for treason, Colin blackmails Eva into accepting a betrothal in exchange for her brother's life. Colin stalls on his promise but seizes the MacArthur lands anyway. Desperate to reclaim Innisfarna, Eva turns to her trusted friend Lachlann MacKerron, only to find that the physical and emotional wounds he incurred while fighting in France have impaired his ability to craft her a fairy sword. Nevertheless, Eva and Lachlann ignite sparks that fan into a strong love and a successful rebellion. King, whose popularity has grown with each book, is a consummate storyteller with a keen ear for dialogue and the ability to create multifaceted characters who capture the reader's sympathy. Her solid grasp of history also helps to firmly entrench readers in this era.
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