Her Vanquished Land by Diane Scott Lewis

Her Vanquished Land by Diane Scott Lewis
Publisher: BWL Publishing Inc.
Genre: Historical
Length: Full length (272 pages)
Heat: Sensual
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Lavender

In 1780, Loyalist Rowena Marsh insists on spying for the British during the American Revolution. As a girl, she must dress as a boy, plus endure devastation and murder as she decodes messages for a mysterious Welshman.

The tide has turned in the rebels’ favor. General George Washington appears to be winning. The loyalists are bombarded by threats and lost battles. Rowena stays determined to aid the British cause and preserve her family as they’re chased from their Pennsylvania home.

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This book starts out with a bang, and from a point of view readers are not often graced with. American loyalists are attacked by patriots during the American Revolution. Rowena, at seventeen, is a strong young woman, and quite the tomboy. Her brothers are fighting in the king’s army.

The story is peppered with period details, immersing us in this world. Rowena wants adventure and to be actively involve with the war effort, which would put her in danger. Seeing things through the eyes of a Loyalist family puts a new perspective on things. This is not a bad family. American readers can even sympathize with them if not agree with them. This is a good sign of good writing, giving us a fascinating view that is rarely seen.

There’s a mystery early on: Is Rowena’s cousin James a spy for the Loyalists, or is he possibly a Patriot?

And what about those just trying to survive this? Danger escalates. An underlying message of women’s importance, their contribution in the war weaves itself around the exciting plot.

It is a well-written story, produced by an author who knows the era. It comes across as very realistic. Rowena is constantly worried that the Royalists will not be victorious and what will become of her and her family if the “Rebels” win the war. We readers, knowing the outcome of the war, can’t help but to worry for this lovable character, whatever side we sympathize with. The author has done a good job of showing that people on both sides were complicated and not all good or bad.

Occasionally Rowena has a thought of understanding for the rebel side, making readers wonder how far this will go in the end. Details of espionage and intrigue keep those pages turning. This is an exciting historical novel well worth the read.

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