Sunday, March 26, 2017

Review: The Mark of the King by Jocelyn Green

After being imprisoned and branded for the death of her client, twenty-five-year-old midwife Julianne Chevalier trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling 1720s French colony of Louisiana, where she hopes to be reunited with her brother, serving there as a soldier. To make the journey, though, women must be married, and Julianne is forced to wed a fellow convict.

When they arrive in New Orleans, there is no news of Benjamin, Julianne's brother, and searching for answers proves dangerous. What is behind the mystery, and does military officer Marc-Paul Girard know more than he is letting on?

With her dreams of a new life shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous, rugged land, despite never being able to escape the king's mark on her shoulder that brands her a criminal beyond redemption.

Paperback, 416 pages 
Published January 3rd 2017
by Bethany House Publishers 
*****


The Mark of the King made my 'best of 2017' list. I am giving this book 5 stars, if it was possible to give more I would.  It's been a while since I've read a book that was so spellbinding right from the beginning that I had a hard time putting it down.

There are so many things that I loved about this book starting with the cover.  It just spoke to me and gave off that warm vibe calling my name.

Right from the very first scene when Julianne, an experienced midwife, encounters tragedy at the birth I was hooked.  As the next scene plays out her time in prison the author didn't hold back and made me feel her distress and helplessness in a situation with no hope of a positive outcome.

The French colony is Louisiana in the 1720's is a very harsh, lonely and dangerous place, which Julianne finds out rather quickly.

The author's writing style was fabulous she wrote of the lifestyle in a wild and dangerous land, whether it was from the weather with its scorching heat and over abundance of bugs and dampness to the conflicts between the natives, British and even amongst themselves.  She didn't rush the story but made me feel what was going on nor did she mince words and painted an authentic print of Louisiana.

The Mark of the King is a story of survival, heartache, forgiveness, redemption and love.  Marked as Christian fiction but don't let that scare you off.  Someone once told me that as a Christian I should only be reading Christian fiction.  My response to that was if there were the type of books I love to read in that genre then I would jump at it.  Historical fiction is my favorite and I haven't really found too many books in that genre that satisfies what I love.  History can be brutal, raw and heartbreaking, I love books based on real life events and people, there needs to be depth of character and they need to be authentic and believable.   The Mark of the King is exactly what I want in both HF and CF.  It was realistic, heartfelt and genuine.  I think this book would be a hit for those that don't usually read this genre.

The book concluded with some wonderful author's note, going into detail about her motivation for writing this story.  In the writing I could feel the author's passion for this story and it's evident that she did a lot of research. It's a part of history that I didn't know existed, not only did I learn a lot about the time period with the struggles between French, natives and British but also what life was like for the early settlers.

I have already searched and ordered more books by this author and highly recommend this one.

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"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

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