Book Review (and a Giveaway!): A Loyal Heart by Jody Hedlund

Posted March 29, 2018 by meezcarrie in Christian, giveaway, romance, YA / 23 Comments


about the book

SERIES: An Uncertain Choice #4
GENRE: Young Adult/Medieval Romance
PUBLISHER: Northern Lights
RELEASE DATE: March 6, 2018
PAGES: 310

He’s taken her as his prisoner. But she’s holding his heart captive. In gaining their freedom, will they lose what matters most?

When Lady Olivia’s castle is besieged, she and her sister are taken captive and held for ransom by her father’s enemy, Lord Pitt. Loyalty to family means everything to Olivia. She’ll save her sister at any cost and do whatever her father asks—even if that means obeying his order to steal a sacred relic from her captor.

As Lord Pitt’s commander, Sir Aldric is in charge of the beautiful but feisty new prisoner. He has his hands full attempting to keep Lady Olivia out of trouble. When Lord Pitt throws her in the dungeon and threatens to hang her for stealing, Aldric conceives a plot to save Olivia’s life—betrothal to him.

Can Olivia give up the prestigious match her father has arranged with a wealthy marquess in order to marry a lowly knight like Aldric? And can Aldric move beyond his past mistakes to embrace love again? When loyalties are tested, they’re thrust into danger that could cost them their love and their lives.

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Other Books In This Series

   

“…his presence was weaving into the tapestry of my life, and…I had no wish to untangle the woven strands …”

After reading the book previous to this one in the series – For Love and Honor – I was drawn to Aldric (Sir Bennet’s brother) and was hoping that someday Jody Hedlund would give us his story. I believe the words I used were “I am not above begging!” Fortunately, it didn’t have to come to that as Hedlund has graciously written Aldric’s story in A Loyal Heart. And what a fabulous story it is!

Olivia and Aldric are fabulously drawn characters, and the alternating first person POV between them allows us to know them more personally over the course of the story. Aldric has made many mistakes (while you don’t have to read For Love and Honor before this one, it really does help to establish his character) but he is trying to learn from them and not be defined by them. Despite his past flaws, he is now a man of integrity (always has been, when it counts) and the care he takes with Olivia and Isabelle warms the heart. For her own part, Olivia is a strong heroine with a fierce spirit (in the best way) and loyal to a fault. She feels deeply for those she cares about, and while her loyalty is sometimes misplaced it’s her strength of heart which best serves her.

The romance in A Loyal Heart is sweet and innocent, but not without its share of sizzle! The passion, however, is tempered with respect – for God and for each other – and their electric chemistry is made all the better for it. So are their swoonilicious kisses and a bath scene that retains its honorability while also causing readers to break out their swooning fans.

Bottom Line: A Loyal Heart continues Hedlund’s top-notch YA series with fierce adventure, tender romance and a meaningful message. Through the riveting story, even from the medieval setting, it tackles issues that YA readers face in today’s world and its message of loyalty, purity and right vs. wrong is organic to the story. All the characters in the ‘An Uncertain Choice’ series are fantastic and vividly-drawn – and Aldric and Olivia are no exceptions. Is it too much to hope for more books in the series? Isabelle and Charlie both need their own stories, after all. And, as we’ve already established, I’m not above begging!

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 5 stars / Fabulous!

KissingBook Level: 4 / Keep those fans & fainting couches handy!

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about the author

Jody Hedlund is the author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award.

Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats. Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she’s learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).

When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.

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Other Books by Jody Hedlund


The Growing Need for Sweet Young Adult Romances
By Jody Hedlund

This past year my youngest daughter turned twelve and entered seventh grade. And she decided that she wanted to read my books.

Of course I was thrilled that she was taking an interest in my writing. But since my adult historical romances are more intense and contain some mature themes, I handed her the young adult series I’ve written.

As she started the first book, I peeked in her room a time or two to ask her how she liked it.

“It’s the best book you’ve ever read, right?” I teased.

“It’s okay,” she replied, teasing me right back.

The true test for how much she liked the series came when she couldn’t put the book down. She hid away in her room and read all day. Then she read the second book the next day and the third book the day after that.

She never did gush over the series. But she didn’t need to. Her serious reading marathon told me all I needed to know! Then when I was writing the fourth book in the series, she asked me if she could read it early before it was published which was another testament to how much she enjoyed the series.

“As long as you promise to say that I’m your favorite author,” I said, teasing her again.

I’m happy to say that she finished A Loyal Heart just as quickly as the others. Although I’m not sure that I’m her favorite author, I’m satisfied that she loved the series.

Even more, I’m thrilled that I could hand her sweet romances full of chivalrous qualities—like courage, sacrifice, honor, and loyalty. As she’s being entertained, she’s learning lessons about character traits that are important in relationships.

My daughter, like other young teens I’ve talked to, really enjoys medieval settings and stories. In some ways, those kinds of stories connect them to the princess fairy tales they used to love when they were little. Let’s face it, even adult readers still love stories about knights and castles and daring damsels!

In a book market for teens that has grown increasingly dark, jaded, and sexual, I only wish I had more to offer my daughter and other young women. It’s my passion to continue providing wholesome, clean romances for teens, books I know will encourage and uplift as well as entertain.

How about YOU? Is there a teen reader you know who needs an alternative to what’s available in the market? I encourage you to gift them with A Loyal Heart. And make sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win the entire series that you can read, pass along, or even gift to your library.

To celebrate her tour, Jody is giving away a grand prize of An Uncertain Choice, A Daring Sacrifice, For Love & Honor, and A Loyal Heart!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

Click here to view this promotion.

This giveaway is hosted by Celebrate Lit, not RimSP
Follow along with the tour for more chances to win!

What about you? What most interests you about this story?

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23 responses to “Book Review (and a Giveaway!): A Loyal Heart by Jody Hedlund

  1. Kay Garrett

    Thank you for your wonderful review and great information on “A Loyal Heart” by Jody Hedlund as well as being part of the book tour!

    I’m definitely adding this to my TBR list and would love the opportunity to read it.

    What an amazing giveaway! To win not only “A Loyal Heart” but to when FOUR awesome books. All I can say is WOW!

  2. I’ve really enjoyed this series and my 12 yo daughter has too! I’m disappointed that I couldn’t fit this book into my schedule but I’ll definitely be adding it to her collection!

  3. Jeannie Marino

    Not sure why, but when I tried to follow the Facebook page, it said it was temporarily blocked. Weird. Oh well, I did the other entries. Just thought you might want to know about the issue.
    I love the premise of A Loyal Heart. <3

  4. Dianne Casey

    Really like the time period of the book. I enjoyed the description of the book and I’m adding to my TBR list.

  5. Amy

    I’ve read all the books in this series and have enjoyed them immensely even though I’m not ‘technically’ considered young adult except in my own mind. 🙂

  6. Faith Creech

    Your books looks very interesting. Would love to read them. Thanks for the chance at the giveaway.

  7. Melissa

    I liked the premise of this book and I can’t wait to be able to read it. It sounds so enthralling. Thanks 4 sharing it.

  8. Pam K.

    I’m first drawn to these books simply because they are written by Jody Hedlund. I’ve read enough of her other books to know they will be well done. Knights, castles, and other aspects of medieval life are so foreign to us that it’s always interesting to read about that time. If I won the books I’d read them and then pass them on to my community library.

  9. Hi Carrie, Thank you so much for the lovely review of my newest book! I also appreciate you hosting me as part of the Celebrate Lit Blog tour! Blessings to you!

  10. Janet Estridge

    We have a very small collection of young adult books in the church library. I’m all for getting this age group to put their cell phones down and into a good book.

  11. Arletta

    Oh, I agree! The teens and YAs need good, clean reading. There is so much garbage out there and I’m always thrilled when the teens come into our church library, excited to see new, clean fiction waiting for them. Please keep on writing.

  12. Mallori

    Based on the book’s description, what’s not to love?? 😀 I have enjoyed all of Jody’s books that I have so far had the chance to read.

  13. Connie Scruggs

    I love everything Jody Hedlund writes! I have read the novella and first book in the series. I want to read the rest.

  14. Debbie Clatterbuck

    I can’t wait to read your new book. I have read the first three in the series and loved them. I love your books.

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