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Monday, October 12, 2009

Blood Tapestry by Ishbel Moore

Blood Tapestry by Ishbel Moore
Publisher: Eirelander Publishing
Genre: Fantasy
Length: Full (308 pages)
Heat: Sweet
Rating: 3 Books
Reviewed by Heather

When blood is shed betwixt new thread, a brave man’s heart protects yer head.

Wash blood away betwixt new stitches, live in fear of plots and switches.

These are the cautionary words told to the Crown Princess Floranza of Libona when she cuts her finger while working on a new tapestry. Within heartbeats Floranza's world begins to change. Her father the king is snatched from a horrible death by a stranger named DunKhan, a member of the highly skilled Intelligence network of the Nongris, who is newly charged with the responsibility of removing Floranza from potential harm. Floranza eventually agrees to go, but only because she wishes to find out who is behind the growing upheaval in her father's kingdom. During their journey through the continent of Charmangea, Floranza and DunKhan find themselves drawn to each other as they face magic, danger and political unrest at every turn. Their growing love seems not to be however, as a Nongris cannot marry, and a Crown Princess cannot be any man's 'woman'.
Is there anything more tragic than civil war? The only thing worse would be to have everything you know to be true disintegrate before your eyes. Princess Floranza finds herself dealing with both in this tale of romance, intrigue and high adventure. When a well-plotted revolt overthrows her father’s regime, Floranza’s world descends into chaos. The only one she can trust is a Nongris officer named DunKhan – a man with secrets of his own.

Princess Floranza has led a sheltered life of roses and daydreams. She is shocked to discover her father was not the benign saint she thought him. And even more shocked that DunKhan is not the man she thought him, but so much more. Secrets and betrayals abound in this sweet, medievalesque tale. Nothing is what it seems.

The world-building is phenomenal – with a depth and richness that makes it truly seem real. Her characters are well-rounded, with strengths and weaknesses and the ability to think and feel and change and grow. The only issue I had as a reader was that Princess Floranza was SO sheltered she started the story out as little more than a silly little girl in a young woman’s body. She does grow and strengthen in one of the sharpest character arcs I’ve ever encountered, but the reader had to hang in there at the beginning. She hangs onto her delusions and denial for a long time. DunKhan ROCKS! A more knightly knight never existed. I truly enjoyed the tale, which is full of twists and turns, and cheered for their HEA!