Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The Seventh Son (Norman Conquest #4) by Ashley York

Title: The Seventh Son (Norman Conquest #4)
Author: Ashley York                            
Genre: Medieval Romance
Length: 324 Pages
Publisher: Indie
Release Date: March 30, 2016
Source: Review Request
Rating: 3
Heat Rating: 3
Reviewed by: Vashti                                                                                        
Drogheda, Ireland 1075

The sixth son bears a curse as certain as the seventh son bears a blessing. When Tadhg MacNaughton’s betrothed is ripped from his arms and married to another, he believes the legend is true.

Tisa O'Brien's life slams into a downward spiral at the news she is no longer betrothed to the love of her life but to the tanist of a warring, prideful clan with dangerous political aspirations, the Meic Lochlainn. She faces her destiny with all the strength and dignity of her Irish heritage despite dealing with a husband who resents her and meets his needs in the arms of others, fighting off the lustful advances of her father-in-law, Aodh, and longing for the husband of her heart.

Tadhg MacNaughton makes a deal with the devil to ensure the survival of his clan as he is commanded to fight for Aodh who envisions himself the new High King of Eire. Up close and personal, Tadhg must witness his true love's marriage and remain silent even as it rips him apart. When a sinister plot to overthrow King William of England led by the exiled Leofrid Godwin and Clan Meic Lochlainn comes to light, Tadhg is faced with saving his clan or endangering his sister and her Norman husband.

An Irish beauty and a warrior betrayed, doomed in love from the start or does fate have something else in store for them?

The Seventh Son is the final book in the Norman Conquest series.

This is the story of Tadgh and Tisa, and whether they will get their happy ever after or not.  However, given that  this is the last book in the series, we see all the main characters from the first three books brought back and questions answered. Including the question of  Sir. John's paternity.

This could be a stand alone read but I think there are too many story lines going on, and the reader may have a hard time understanding all that is happening and why.

There really is not  much interaction between Tadgh and Tisa until midway near the end of the book. To me, this story seemed to revolve more around Tisa, her queen of a husband Darragh, and Tisa's struggle for survival in an unfamiliar, totally foreign, and many times hostile situation.   Tisa and Darragh are both forced into this marriage by their fathers.  A marriage that neither of them wants.  Tisa was really blindsided by her father, Roland, and not only because he ends her engagement to the love of her life.  It was very cruel, no matter his reasons, and Roland never redeemed himself in my eyes.

Sometimes a character can rub you the wrong way in the beginning of a story and then totally redeem themselves, but Darragh is not that character!  I think Darragh was very much bipolar because he seemed cruel, hard, and extremely self-centered, but after the marriage sometimes he's kind and warm, wanting to protect and help Tisa.  Then BAM, in the blink of an eye, or in the wink of a guy, he flips and is all about himself and what he wants.  Leaving Tisa to fend for herself on more than one occasion.  It actually got really old, very fast, hearing him drool on and on about how he doesn't sleep alone, or seeing him fawning over his preferred bed partners. The fact that he is so disrespectful to his wife in their home and then at one point he has the nerve to question her as to whether she's cuckolding him, was one of many reasons why I totally disliked Darragh.  He keeps saying he wants to protect her and he sees how she is truly protecting him from his father Aodh, yet he does not reciprocate.  Every time I started to warm up to him, the bipolar switch came on and he would do something that just disgusted me.

When Tisa and Tadgh finally get together and interact it is literally so heart-wrenching I was tempted to go to the end of the book to find out what happened but that's not my style.  I will never go to the end of the book because I thoroughly enjoy the "read" when a book captures my attention.  I really was tempted though, because Tisa seemed like she just couldn't catch a break, and I was desperate to find out how it all ends.

There is an extreme amount of confusion that leads to heartache for most of the characters in this story, which all started off in book 2 with Padraig, Tadgh's father.

This book is a journey, to say the least.  Not just the struggles of Tisa and Tadgh, but some of the very evil characters that are introduced in this book  are literally cringe-worthy, and you actually want them to die.  Tisa's father-in-law or more accurate, her Creep-in-law, was the worst in the series and I didn't think anybody could stoop lower than that swine Ivan from books 1, 2 and 3.  Garrett is another vile creature but Malcolm, who was assigned as a sort of bodyguard, seemed at first an iffy guy, but he actually turned out to be one of the best men in the book.

There were a few bits I found hard to believe such as Aodh having tears of grief.  Simply because he was so vile and disrespectful to Tisa and Darragh.  Also his vain ambitions led him to badly mistreat his first wife and granddaughter.  Just hard to believe this first rate A-hole even had tears in is body.  I'm sure they were as black as his soul!  I won't go into much more detail but I seriously question the naming of Tisa's first born.  Hard to believe that no matter Tisa's thinking,  how could her husband approve of his 1st born son being given a name other than his.

This was not my favorite book of the series, which is ironic because this book is the one I had the most anticipation to read.   The cover was actually my favorite out of all four books.  By no means is this a bad book,  I simply liked books 2 and 3 more.  There were just so many different stories and points of view going on that from chapter 1 to the next it was jumping back and forth and just a little hard to follow in the beginning.  Along with a few typos, but not enough to distract from reading.  Lovers of this series will certainly love this book.

I recommend to anyone who is into medieval romance novels,  Irish medieval history, which I thoroughly enjoy,  men with a twitch in the wrist, or just heartfelt struggles and wondering if your hero and heroine are ever going to find their way through to a happily-ever-after, then this book is for you.

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