Book Reviews · Historical Fiction

The Steel Beneath the Silk + Giveaway!

The Steel Beneath the Silk
by Patricia Bracewell

Publication Date: March 2, 2021
Bellastoria Press

Series: The Emma of Normandy Series, Book 3
Genre: Medieval/Historical Fiction

A breathtaking conclusion to Bracewell’s Emma of Normandy Trilogy, brimming with treachery, heartache, tenderness and passion as the English queen confronts ambitious and traitorous councilors, invading armies and the Danish king’s power-hungry concubine.

In the year 1012 England’s Norman-born Queen Emma has been ten years wed to an aging, ruthless, haunted King Æthelred. The marriage is a bitterly unhappy one, between a queen who seeks to create her own sphere of influence within the court and a suspicious king who eyes her efforts with hostility and resentment. But royal discord shifts to grudging alliance when Cnut of Denmark, with the secret collusion of his English concubine Elgiva, invades England at the head of a massive viking army. Amid the chaos of war, Emma must outwit a fierce enemy whose goal is conquest and outmaneuver the cunning Elgiva, who threatens all those whom Emma loves.

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Okay. Okay, okay, OKAY. Let me try to gather my thoughts. I just finished this book like, minutes ago. And I need to gather my thoughts so that I can properly convey my review to you. Because currently, I am trying to figure out if I want to cry, buy all of Patricia Bracewell’s books, run around the house excitedly whilst waving The Steel Beneath the Silk around like a madwoman, or perhaps all of the above.

I choose all of the above.

Crying would most definitely be an appropriate response, because with the last page of The Steel Beneath the Silk, I have now completed this series and am supposed to wave goodbye to Emma of Normandy. Which is so. very. hard. to do because she has fascinated me for many years. I mean, c’mon! She was a Viking queen of England; queen consort twice, mother of the king twice and step-mother to yet another king, if memory serves me correctly. She went through so many trials, so many scares. And yet survived them all. We know precious little about her, but enough to gather that she knew how to play the real “game of thrones,” strategically keep herself alive and most of the time, plant herself in the forefront of court politics. So a) reading this book series about her was the biggest treat ever and b) it was hard to turn that last page!

As to buying all of the author’s books, I find that totally feasible and I will be getting on that task immediately. Also so should you. Also also, your sister needs a new book. And her bestie. And probably her bestie’s mother. Just sayin’.

As for running around and waving this novel around; Friends, this book is simply amazing. The author picks you up and drops you smack-dab in the middle of the time period. There’s no gentle easing into it. You are there, from the very first page. Her passion for the era and her dedication to research is evident as the storyline progresses. I was able to see through the characters’ eyes with ease, hearing the sounds and witnessing the events. The plot moved along at a steady pace, and Emma herself was fleshed out so marvelously.

Bottom Line: No longer an obscure character from some long-ago forgotten history book, Emma now walks and breathes and lives and loves and fights. And I for one, fell headlong into her story.

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About the Author

Patricia Bracewell grew up in Los Angeles where her love of stories led to college degrees in Literature, a career as a high school English teacher, and a yearning to write. Her first novel, Shadow on the Crown, about the 11th-century queen of England, Emma of Normandy, was published in 2013. Its sequel, The Price of Blood, appeared in 2015. The final book of her Emma of Normandy Trilogy, The Steel Beneath the Silk will be published March 2, 2021.

Patricia lives with her husband in Oakland, California.

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Blog Tour Schedule

Sunday, March 1
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Monday, March 2
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, March 3
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

Wednesday, March 4
Review at Into the Hall of Books

Friday, March 6
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Monday, March 9
Review at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, March 10
Interview at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, March 11
Feature at Reading is My Remedy

Friday, March 13
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books

Sunday, March 15
Feature at Coffee and Ink

Monday, March 16
Review at Madwoman in the Attic

Wednesday, March 18
Feature at The Whispering Bookworm

Thursday, March 19
Review at Rajiv’s Reviews

Sunday, March 22
Review at Novels Alive

Monday, March 23
Interview at Books & Benches

Tuesday, March 24
Guest Post at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

Thursday, March 26
Feature at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Monday, March 30
Review at Jorie Loves a Story
Review at The Enchanted Shelf

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away two paperback copies of The Steel Beneath the Silk!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on March 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Steel Beneath the Silk

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