Book Review: The Du Lac Devil by Mary Anne Yarde

DuLacDevilAction-packed, tightly plotted historical fantasy/ romance

About the Book

Publisher’s description (courtesy of Goodreads): War is coming to Saxon Briton. As one kingdom after another falls to the savage might of the High King, Cerdic of Wessex, only one family dares to stand up to him — The Du Lacs. Budic and Alden Du Lac are barely speaking to each other, and Merton is a mercenary, fighting for the highest bidder. If Wessex hears of the brothers’ discord, then all is lost. Fate brings Merton du Lac back to the ancestral lands of his forefathers, and he finds his country on the brink of civil war. But there is worse to come, for his father’s old enemy has infiltrated the court of Benwick. Now, more than ever, the Du Lac must come together to save the kingdom and themselves. Can old rivalries and resentments be overcome in time to stop a war?

Book Facts

  • Format: ebook
  • No. of pages: 393
  • Publication date: 6th December 2016
  • Genre: Historical Fantasy, Historical Romance

My Review (3.5 out of 5)

This is the second book in Mary Anne Yarde’s The Du Lac Chronicles series.  I haven’t read the first book and I did find it difficult at first to work out who everyone was, who was related to whom and how and what the different political factions were. So I would probably recommend readers to start with the first book in the series to get more of the back story on the characters.

Having said that, I enjoyed the book and thought the author did a great job of blending her imaginary world with the limited historical fact and the more extensive fable surrounding King Arthur, Lancelot, etc.   There was no attempt at period language which I think is probably wise as this is often unsuccessful although there were a couple of occasions when some very modern sounding phrases jarred such as ‘Come on, sunshine, time to wake up’ and ‘This could all go pear-shaped at any minute’.

The book focuses on Merton, the youngest of the sons of Lancelot du Lac, who has built up a fearsome reputation as a mercenary.   His rumoured ‘devilish’ actions are actually the key to his success as a mercenary but of course there is usually more than one side to a person’s character.   The plot is fast-paced and full of twists and turns. There are secret alliances, plots and counter-plots, intrigues and acts of violence driven by ambition, revenge, love and betrayal.   At times, it became a little taxing to keep up with all the changes of alliances and revelations. Into the heady mix is woven romance as Merton finds himself the object of more than one woman’s affection.  Can the Du Lac Devil be tamed?

The author has created a thoroughly entertaining story, a blend of historical fiction, fantasy and romance, with plenty of loose ends that could be picked up in future books.

I received a review copy courtesy of Xpresso Book Tours and the author in return for an honest review.

To buy a copy of The Du Lac Devil from, click here (link is provided for convenience, not as part of any affiliate programme)

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In three words: Fast-paced, entertaining, romance

Try something similar…Sword at Sunset by Rosemary Sutcliff

MaryAnneYardeAbout the Author

Mary Anne Yarde is an award winning author of the International Bestselling series — The Du Lac Chronicle. Born in Bath, England, Yarde grew up in the southwest of England, surrounded and influenced by centuries of history and mythology. Glastonbury – the fabled Isle of Avalon – was a mere fifteen-minute drive from her home, and tales of King Arthur and his knights were part of her childhood. At nineteen, Yarde married her childhood sweetheart and began a Bachelor of Arts in history at Cardiff University, only to have her studies interrupted by the arrival of her first child. She would later return to higher education, studying equine science at Warwickshire College. Horses and history remain two of her major passions. Yarde keeps busy raising four children and helping run a successful family business. She has many skills but has never mastered cooking–so if you ever drop by, she (and her family) would appreciate some tasty treats or a meal out!

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