DREAMS OF LILACS – Lynn Kurland
England and France – 1232
Isabelle de Piaget is contemplating doing something her parents would forbid. But she must respond to the cryptic message she received threatening her grandmother, who resides in an abbey in France. She must do this alone, and getting away from Artane, her family's castle, is not going to be easy. Confiding in her twin brother, Miles, Isabelle convinces him that she will wait for him before she departs, as he has business to do elsewhere. But Isabelle doesn't wait and convinces another brother, Montgomery, to go south with her. After disabling that brother, Isabelle dons men's clothing and buys her fare to France.
In France, Gervase de Seger is struggling to recover from a horrific accident which left him with a broken leg that hasn't healed properly and burns to his hand. Determined to get out of the castle, he rides away, barely able to stay upright in the saddle for the pain in his leg. When he rescues a young boy being robbed and assaulted by ruffians, Gervase reluctantly brings the boy home. Only it's not a boy, but a beautiful young woman who cut her hair, and now can't remember who she is or why she's in France. Grumpily, Gervase listens to his half-brothers and finds work for the urchin in his kitchens. But soon he finds that the nameless girl is an asset to his male dominated family. For Gervase has six younger half-brothers, the youngest ones in dire need of a mother, and attention. His step mother tripped off to court after his father died, leaving her six sons to fend for themselves.
Isabelle, the urchin, slowly regains her memory, but keeps that to herself. She still must get to the abbey to her grandmother, but the de Seger clan seems to like her, although Gervase constantly growls and scowls at everyone. Isabelle has heard stories about the lord of Monsaert, for Gervase has a reputation of being a rogue and a womanizer. That is not the man she sees, and she slowly starts to melt his gruff exterior. Isabelle also is made aware that his injuries were caused by someone who wants him dead…and still does.
Who sent Isabelle the message? And who wants Gervase dead? Isabelle and Gervase must find out before life can go on, or another “accident” occurs that finishes Gervase.
One spunky young woman, and one knight who is ailing in both body and soul, Isabelle and Gervase are a pair who realize that they must work together to solve their problems. There is plenty of humor as well as quite a few touching scenes where Gervase wonders if he can ever have the life he craves with Isabelle. Will her family kill him before he can convince them that he cares? Or will someone else kill him first?
A mystery, and a delightful love story, DREAMS OF LILACS is a sweet continuation of the de Piaget family tale.