The Iron Warrior Returns
The Iron Warrior Returns is one of a number of medievals I’ve seen slowly making a comeback at Harlequin Historicals (new full-length mass market medievals remain elusive). Unfortunately, it isn’t a good example of the genre.
Lord Robert of Penrith, his illegitimate half-brother Piers, and the miller’s children, Morwenna and Brian, were captured during an attack on Penrith. Nobody knows why the miller’s children were taken. They escaped; nobody came after them (I’m not sure why not). Despite being eighteen, Robert has never been trained in military skills, so he, Piers, and Brian train themselves in a ruin where they live with Morwenna for two years. No, I don’t know what they live on. Anyway, the lord of Penrith declares that his daughter will marry her choice of the men who come to a tournament for her hand, so off Robert goes. Morwenna follows, schmoozing with the nobles by disguising herself in a dress that has been buried for two years. No, I don’t know how that fabric is still intact.
Look, the whole thing is just not interesting. Morwenna is inexplicably besotted with Robert, who is the human equivalent of a bowl of oatmeal, except less satisfying. His greatest achievement is saving the life of King John, which is a wild choice by the author (couldn’t you set your medieval during the reign of someone who, uh, wasn’t the most unpopular monarch in the history of his country, noted for taking wives and children hostage and abusing them?) I didn’t care if either of them ended up happy.
Even before the ending, which involves
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I'm a history geek and educator, and I've lived in five different countries in North America, Asia, and Europe. In addition to the usual subgenres, I'm partial to YA, Sci-fi/Fantasy, and graphic novels. I love to cook.