Saturday, March 8, 2014

Book Review: Breaking Ties by Jo Grafford

Breaking Ties
Author: Jo Grafford
Publication: Astraea Press (October 16, 2013)

Description: A cursed island, a chilling conspiracy, and an unforgettable love story. The 115 colonists on Roanoke Island couldn't GPS, skype or twitter their ultimate destination back to their families and friends in 16th Century England. But modern laser technology has finally uncovered a clue - hidden beneath a patch on an ancient map at the British museum - that leads us to their whereabouts. Considered "lost" for centuries, these brave pioneers finally reveal the rest of their story in Book One of the Lost Colony Series.

Rose Payne's world is left in tatters after a disastrous betrothal, making her an easy target for recruiters to the Colonies. Using every cent she has, Rose sails for the New World and a fresh start, vowing to never again fall for a wealthy man.

Returning from a diplomatic tour in London, Chief Manteo is bewitched by the fiery-haired ship's clerk and determined to overcome her distrust. He contrives a daring plan to win her heart - one that forces her, honor bound, to serve as a slave to his tribe - a plan he prays will protect her from a chilling conspiracy involving murder, blood money, and a betrayal of their fledgling colony so terrifying it can only be revealed in Breaking Ties.

My Thoughts: BREAKING TIES was an interesting historical fiction story that included a bit of romance too. Rose Payne, daughter of a tenant farmer and trained clerk, finds herself on a colonizing voyage to the New World as a way to escape a broken heart. She had different expectations about her romance with a Duke's son than he did. When he offered to set her up as his mistress instead of his wife, she decided to flee the country.

Rose finds herself on her way to Chesapeake Bay with a bunch of Puritans. However, plots at home regarding the Letters of Patent authorizing the colony means that someone is out to sabotage the journey. The journey has problems enough for Rose. Besides dealing with heartbreak and seasickness, she is also accused of witchcraft. When she falls overboard and is rescued by Chief Manteo, her failure to drown confirms her witchcraft in many eyes.

Chief Manteo is traveling back to his home after serving as a diplomat for his people. He is looked upon by most as a savage of little intelligence but it doesn't take Rose long to realize that he is a handsome man who speaks and understands more English than he lets on. He begins to court her but she isn't ready to risk her heart again. And then, when she is, she learns that he already has a wife and wants to make her his second wife which breaks her heart again.

Rose is something of a guy magnet. She also attracts the attention of Christopher Cooper who is the younger son of a Baron and one of the ministers on the voyage. She likes him but is concerned about his place in the conspiracy that is raging.

Told in the first person by Rose, the book is filled with plots and the harsh brutality of the times. It is also filled with the colonists efforts to survive despite long odds against them. It was an engaging story for those who like their history gritty. It also provides a possible explanation for the disappearance of the Roanoke colony.

Fans of historical romance will enjoy this story.

Favorite Quote:
"Yes indeed. Are you familiar with the theory of climbing back on a horse after a tumble?"

"Come again?"

Blue eyes twinkled with mischief.

"Nay, Agnes. Pray do not suggest I pay court to any of your lonely colonists."

"Ah, have a little faith in me, my friend. I thought only to place you back on the horse, not to slap his rump into a full gallop."
I received this ebook from the author in exchange for an honest review. You can buy your copy here.

1 comment:

  1. Why aren't there more books about the Roanoke colony? This seems like it could be a hotbed for historical (paranormal) fiction!


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