Set in sixteenth century Wales, this novel is the sequel to Glastonbury Tor, a finalist for the Christy Award for inspirational fiction. (See a synopsis of that book below and check out my review of it here.)
In Honddu Vale, Colin returns home to make amends and ask the forgiveness of his father, whom he tried to kill, blaming him for his mother's death. His arrival home is difficult. His father is heavily into drink, has a woman who has bewitched him, and is in debt to a new and wealthy landowner in the area.
His father adds insult to injury by wanting to pledge Colin in marriage to the wealthy landowner's daughter. But Colin has promised his future to his love back in Glastonbury.
And this woman, Belle, who has made her way into Sir Stephen's home – there is something about her. When Colin's treasure from Glastonbury, the olive wood cup, has gone missing he is sure she has taken it.
Colin tries to rescue his father from her influence and set the household back in order. But he is about dangerous work. He finds his life threatened too many times. Should he leave? But he is supported by his childhood friend, the friend who has eyes for the wealthy man's daughter. Animosity between the locals and the new landowner turns deadly and Colin is right in the middle of it.
Hardy has crafted another great historical novel. We really get a sense of life in sixteenth century Wales and the spiritual tumult in the era of Henry VIII. We see the mixture of legend, vision, and church that made up Christianity at the time. We see Colin struggling with his faith, knowing he should forgive his father for his mother's death, yet being so disgusted with his father's behavior it proves very difficult.
Hardy has included twists, turns, and revelations that keep you reading to the rewarding end. This is a wonderful novel of forgiveness and redemption.
LeAnne Hardy has been a missionary in a number of countries and currently lives in Wisconsin. You can find out more about her here. Check out her website and follow her blog: http://www.leannehardy.net/index.htm
Birch Island Books, 202 pages
In Glastonbury Tor Colin searches to resolve his bitterness against his father by fleeing to Glastonbury Abbey, one of the oldest monasteries in all of Britain. There in the turmoil of King Henry VIII’s dissolution of the medieval monastic system, he finds an old wooden cup. The cup is disregarded by King Henry’s men when they search the abbey for treasure, but it just might be the most coveted object in all of Britain.
I received a complimentary galley of this book from the author for the purpose of this review.