Friday, November 2, 2012

The Wicked and the Just, J. Anderson Coats

Tonight at supper, over capon and relish, my father ruined my life.
He smiled big, scrubbed his lips with the end of his cloak, and said, "We're moving house." 
"Thank the Blessed Virgin!" I sat up straighter and smoothed my kirtle. "I'm weary to thimbles of Coventry. Will we be back at Edgeley Hall in time for the Maypole?" 
"No, sweeting. We're not going back to Edgeley. We're moving to Caernarvon."
"What in God's name is that?"
"It's a town in Wales."
I'm in my chamber now. I will never speak to him again. Unless he buys me a new pelisson for the journey.

Sorry, for the long excerpt, but I thought that it fit the best. This book is set in the late 13th century, mainly in Wales. Cecily is forced to move to Wales, to the town of Caernarvon, rather than going back to Edgeley Hall. Wales has been occupied, and the Welsh people are discontented and starving. Gwenhwyfar knows all about it. She's one of them, and is forced to work in the house that might have been hers. She thinks of Cecily as "the brat."

I got a review copy from Harcourt, and I enjoyed this one, though I doubt it was that historically accurate (in the 13th century, they spoke Middle English.) But can you really enjoy a book if you dislike the main character? Cecily is stuck-up and nasty to the Welsh people, and for about the first 100 pages, I really hated her. She does start to realize the oppression in the town, and she's not all bad, but really, she mercilessly punishes a boy (who turns out to be Gwinny's brother) just because he looked at her. Come on. Cecily does get better, it's just a slow process. You have to stick with her.

Still, this one was really suspenseful, and I wanted more of Gwinny. She's a really great character, though I kept wishing that she would tell Cecily that the boy was her brother. That might have helped. Maybe. I enjoyed the historical setting despite its probable inaccuracies, and look forward to reading more from J. Anderson Coats.

Read The Wicked and the Just:
  • if you like historical fiction
  • if you like books set in medieval times
  • if you like books set in Wales
336 pages.
Very Good! I would recommend this book!

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