Picture the scene: a young woman’s parents inform her they’ve arranged a marriage for her - an alliance with a powerful man.
‘I can’t marry him,’ she tells them. ‘I’m already married to another.’
With all the legalities a couple have to go through before they can marry, such a situation seems incredible. But in the Middle Ages, it could and did happen. There were no marriage licences; you didn’t have to marry in a church or other licensed premises; you didn’t even need witnesses. It was simply necessary for each partner to verbally consent to be the other’s husband/wife and the deed was done.
Of course, if the couple couldn’t produce witnesses to their marriage, it was possible for determined parents to separate them. You can imagine the lengths parents might go to to persuade their child to pretend the marriage hadn’t happened if the marriage they’d originally planned was important to them.
That’s what happened to Isobel and Edmund, the hero and heroine of my latest book, although I’m not going to give away who caved, and how they were persuaded. But imagine how they would feel if, after a five-year separation, they found themselves snowed in together in the same castle. That’s the premise that came to me when I started thinking about Isobel and Edmund’s characters and what their separation would do to them. I realised it would take a major intervention to get them talking again, hence the blizzard. Even so, it’s going to take more than a few words to overcome their anger and bitterness, and Isobel is terrified Edmund will discover the secret she’s hidden from him.
Intrigued? If you want to know what happens next, you’ll have to buy the book!
Snowed in with the man who abandoned her five years earlier, Norman widow Isobel de Brockton is terrified he will discover her secret. If Edmund Granville finds out, she risks losing all she holds dear.
Edmund is determined to earn the king's favor by catching a fugitive. The last thing he needs is to be stuck in a castle with the woman who cruelly cast him off. But after Isobel’s young son is lost in a blizzard, Edmund learns the truth behind their separation.
Now he resolves to reclaim his bride, but the deep wounds of their past haven't mended. Can they finally heal their damaged hearts and seize their second chance at love?
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My writing, research and any other randomness that seems like a good idea at the time.