Monday, May 15, 2017

Review/Giveaway: Under the Approaching Dark by Anna Belfrage

 Adam de Guirande has cause to believe the turbulent times are behind him: Hugh Despenser is dead and Edward II is forced to abdicate in favour of his young son. 

It is time to look forward, to a bright new world in which the young king, guided by his council, heals his kingdom and restores its greatness. But the turmoil is far from over.

After years of strife, England in the early months of 1327 is a country in need of stability, and many turn with hope towards the new young king, Edward III. But Edward is too young to rule, so instead it is his mother, Queen Isabella, and her lover, Roger Mortimer, who do the actual governing, much to the dislike of barons such as Henry of Lancaster.

In the north, the Scots take advantage of the weakened state of the realm and raid with impunity. Closer to court, it is Mortimer’s increasing powers that cause concerns – both among his enemies, but also for men like Adam, who loves Mortimer dearly, but loves the young king just as much.

When it is announced that Edward II has died in September of 1327, what has so far been a grumble grows into voluble protests against Mortimer. Yet again, the spectre of rebellion haunts the land, and things are further complicated by the reappearance of one of Adam’s personal enemies. Soon enough, he and his beloved wife Kit are fighting for their survival – even more so when Adam is given a task that puts them both in the gravest of dangers.

"The writing is impeccable. The story has everything. Under the Approaching Dark is just perfect in every sense" - Sharon Bennett Connolly, History The Interesting Bits

Publication Date: April 28, 2017 
Matador eBook & 
Paperback; 424 Pages 
Genre: Historical Fiction
I don't think it's a secret that I have been a fan of this author since reading her Graham Saga and I am equally enamoured with The King's Greatest Enemy Series.. Under the Approaching Dark is book three in this series and though you can read as a standalone I highly recommend going back to the beginning with In The Shadow of the Storm as well as Days of Sun and Glory - trust me you won't be disappointed.

The year is 1327, it's a time that I am unfamiliar with making my reading all the more enjoyable as I have no idea what will take place. So I get my dose of entertainment at the same time as being educated . The synopsis above does a great job with the storyline and as usual I will not add to it. Suffice to say my only disappointment with this series is that Adam and Kit are fictional characters. I would've loved for them to be real. They are put in the middle of real historical events with real historical figures bringing history to life. 

It is evident the author has done her research not just with this book but with the series. With her attention to detail and her superb descriptive writing I didn't just read the story but I felt it as well. England is in turmoil, a young King is on the throne (before his time) as his father sits in prison and to add more drama the Queen has taken a lover and not just any man but her husband's greatest enemy.  It isn't just the country but those around the court who wait and see what takes place next. 

Under the Approaching Dark is not just a political story, it is full of tension, uncertainty, bloodshed, and no Anna Belfrage is complete without romance.  Her writing style always draws me in, not just with a story I find entertaining but a pose that makes me appreciate her talent as a writer.

Definitely a series and author I highly recommend.

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Anna was raised abroad, on a pungent mix of Latin American culture, English history and Swedish traditions. As a result she's multilingual and most of her reading is historical- both non-fiction and fiction. Possessed of a lively imagination, she has drawers full of potential stories, all of them set in the past. She was always going to be a writer - or a historian, preferably both. Ideally, Anna aspired to becoming a pioneer time traveler, but science has as yet not advanced to the point of making that possible. Instead she ended up with a degree in Business and Finance, with very little time to spare for her most favourite pursuit. Still, one does as one must, and in between juggling a challenging career Anna raised her four children on a potent combination of invented stories, historical debates and masses of good food and homemade cakes. They seem to thrive… For years she combined a challenging career with four children and the odd snatched moment of writing. Nowadays Anna spends most of her spare time at her writing desk. The children are half grown, the house is at times eerily silent and she slips away into her imaginary world, with her imaginary characters. Every now and then the one and only man in her life pops his head in to ensure she's still there.

Other than on her website,, Anna can mostly be found on her blog, – unless, of course, she is submerged in writing her next novel.

You can also connect with Anna on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

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To win a copy of Under the Approaching Dark by Anna Belfrage, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on May 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open internationally.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

  Under the Appraoching Dark

1 comment:

  1. Oh, what a beautiful review! Thank you for taking the time to read, thank you for making me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!