YA Historical Fiction / Fantasy (359 pgs.)
When Addy is swept back in time, she couldn't be happier to leave her miserable life behind. Now she's mistaken for Lady Mathilda, the pampered ward of the king. If Addy can play her part, she'll have glorious gowns, jewels, and something she's always longed for--the respect and admiration of others. But then she meets Will, the falconer's son with sky blue eyes, who unsettles all her plans.
From shipwrecks to castle dungeons, from betrothals to hidden conspiracies, Addy finds herself in a world where she's not the only one with a dangerous secret. When she discovers the truth, Addy must take matters into her own hands. The stakes? Her chance at true love, and the life she's meant to live.
I picked this book up at my local bookstore because it sounded fairly interesting. I've always enjoyed books that include time travel, because I love to see how characters get along in such a completely different world than the ones they were living in.
The only problem I have with time traveling books is that usually for the characters, some out-of-the-blue plot twist happens and they magically fit right into someone's vacated place. It just never seems real enough. Unfortunately, this book was no exception.
When Addy is transported back in time, she sees a falcon, which leads her to a beach on which the remnants of a shipwreck are washed up. Turns out, that ship was carrying the real Lady Mathilda to the castle of Sir Hugh. So when riders show up to survey the damage, they see Addy and assume she is Lady Mathilda, the only survivor of the wreck. I just found this really unbelievable. I have yet to discover a good time traveling story in which the character really has to think and figure out a way to "jump in on the action," as it were.
Actually, the whole story continued in that fashion. The plot was just too unbelievable. It was all really too good to be true. Everything ends up happening right for Addy, even when it doesn't seem like it's going to, it does.
The characters really weren't anything special, just stock characters refashioned in a new way. Will's love for Addy seemed to be a bit unbelievable (again) to me, just because he falls so in love with Addy from the start and it's never made clear what his feelings are based off of.
Historical accuracy wasn't anything to spectacular either. It was just the basics. Nothing to be in awe over. Although I will give credit to Emily Whitman for doing some good research on hawking. That element of the book was well researched.
The prose was simple and pretty unornamented. Seriously, I finished this book in two days.
If I could sum up this book in one word, it would be charming. It was a charming story. The plot was okay, the characters were okay, and the historical accuracy was okay. Nothing really special stood out to me here. Definitely just a run-of-the-mill YA Historical Fiction novel. A good read if you've got a couple of lazy days.
Book #5 in Historical Fiction Reading Challenge