…With a sweeping
elegance, I soon found myself utterly enchanted with The Briton and the Dane by
Mary Ann Bernal. Gwyneth was a character that I immediately loved. She is
young, feisty, and something of a free spirit. She cannot be tamed. Her
wilfulness, often bordering on defiance made her a fascinating protagonist and
one I enjoyed reading about, although I did feel sorry for the monks, whose
patience Gwyneth put to the test on more than one occasion! Gwyneth’s story was
also a lovely reminder of the joyful experience of first love.
The Briton and the Dane has a large cast of characters. There is not one but three romance stories within the cover of this book. Gwyneth’s brothers, the lovable David and the serious Stephen all have rather complicated love interests — David in particular! I thoroughly enjoyed learning about these supporting characters, and they helped to give the story depth. I especially enjoyed Stephen and Elizabeth’s story.
Bernal has a very engaging narrative and style, which held my attention throughout the course of this book. The political intrigue and the threat of war between King Guthrum and King Alfred (later to be known as The Great) gave this novel a sense of urgency. Peace was fragile, and war was on the horizon, add to that the complicated romance plot of our young intrepid protagonists, made The Briton and the Dane unputdownable.
I have read three books in The Briton and the Dane saga, and I have enjoyed them all. Bernal is a natural storyteller and writes fabulous escapism fiction. — Mary Anne Yarde The Coffee Pot Book Club Book Award