MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
11/50 – 2022 Goodreads Challenge
Book 4 of #FebruarySheWrote
The Mists of Avalon meets the world of Philippa Gregory in the thrilling first novel of a debut trilogy that reveals the untold story of Languoreth-a forgotten queen of sixth-century Scotland-twin sister of the man who inspired the legend of Merlin. I write because I have seen the darkness that will come. Already there are those who seek to tell a new history…
In a land of mountains and mist, tradition and superstition, Languoreth and her brother Lailoken are raised in the Old Way of their ancestors.
But in Scotland, a new religion is rising, one that brings disruption, bloodshed, and riot. And even as her family faces the burgeoning forces of Christianity, the Anglo-Saxons, bent on colonization, are encroaching from the east. When conflict brings the hero Emrys Pendragon to her father’s door, Languoreth finds love with one of his warriors. Her deep connection to Maelgwn is forged by enchantment, but she is promised in marriage to Rhydderch, son of a Christian king. As Languoreth is catapulted into a world of violence and political intrigue, she must learn to adapt. Together with her brother-a warrior and druid known to history as Myrddin-Languoreth must assume her duty to fight for the preservation of the Old Way and the survival of her kingdom, or risk the loss of them both forever.
Based on new scholarship, this tale of bravery and conflicted love brings a lost queen back to life-rescuing her from obscurity, and reaffirming her place at the center of one of the most enduring legends of all time.
📖/🎧 Kindle Whispersync
I really enjoyed this fictional tale about a real life queen that was forgotten by time. Languoreth was a queen in 6th century Scotland that was written out of history for her “adulterous ways.” The author did a lot of research to bring her story to life as a child all the way through motherhood, introducing us to many characters including her twin brother, Lailoken, who is most likely the inspiration for Merlin of Arthurian legend. The details that the author describes of the area brings Scotland to life in vivid detail. The narrator also helps out with this by doing an outstanding job with the voices and accents. I love Irish and Scottish accents, so the moment I heard her voice I was already transported to ancient Scotland.
There is a place within pain that exists beyond tears.
It is a bottomless black pit that sends men marching with their spears drawn into mill-grinders. It is a beast with a thousand heads that rips at your entrails.
The story is more than just about Languoreth though, while this is her story, it is also a story of religion. The old Pagan ways vs the new Christian ways. I thought the author did a great job of telling us the impact that religion had at that time and how it changed the landscape of Scotland’s future. STAY TUNED after the book is over, to listen to the author’s notes. This was a very impressive debut novel that I am more than likely going to be purchasing a physical copy of to have on my shelf.