by Robin Hardy

November 2003
ISBN: 0-9745-8290-5
Reviewer Graphic Button Westford Press
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Under a mandate from her father, Nicole of Prie Mer heads to the court at Westford. She is to find a rich or noble husband or she canít return home. Nicole is eager for the new experiences that being the friend of the Chataine Renee will bring her. Maybe she really will be lucky enough to find a man that she could love and that her father would accept.

The intrigues of the court amaze and puzzle Nicole. As she wades through the darkening waters of politics, Nicole must come to terms with her faith and her love. She finds herself falling in love with a man who is haunted by the actions of others. Yet he is a man who will love her and stay faithful to her no matter the circumstances.

Nicoleís love and trust is tested at every turn in her journey through this terrible time. She must put her trust in people that she has known only for a short time. Nicole must find the strength in herself to accept the love that she has been given. There is a courageous heart buried under her beauty and she must decide when to make her stand for the man she loves and the life she believes in.

A palace filled with intrigue and dark secrets makes the perfect backdrop for this coming of age story. Nicole starts out as just a beautiful young girl hoping to find a husband that will please her father. She becomes through her trails a strong and confident woman who knows that faith and love will see her through whatever else is to come. The reader will cheer with each victory. There will be tugs at the heartstrings each time the man she loves comes to rescue her or to tell her he loves her. The secondary characters have been fleshed out so that the reader comes to care for them as well, especially the young Chatain Henry.

Nicole of Prie Mer is a wonderful book that will teach us all about faith. Nicole never loses sight of the fact that she will always be rescued by the one she believes in. I look forward to the second book in the series that will be out in October of this year.

Reviewed in May 2004 by Jenni.

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