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Dark Champion Mass Market Paperback – 31 Jan 2003

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Signet; Reissue edition (31 Jan 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451207661
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451207661
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 2.7 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 913,402 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jo Beverley writes bestselling historical romance novels. Publishers Weekly declared her "Arguably today's most skillful writer of intelligent historical romance..." Her work has been described as "Sublime!" by Booklist, and Romantic Times declared her to be "one of the great names of the genre."

She was born and raised in England and has a degree in history and American Studies from Keele University. She emigrated to Canada in 1976. In 2008 she returned to England and now lives in Devon. Her novels are set in the medieval, Georgian, and Regency periods and have won five RITAs, romance's top award, as well as many other accolades. She is one of twelve members of the Romance Writers of America's Hall of Fame.

She also writes some fantasy and science fiction in novellas and won the Sapphire Award for best SF romance for The Trouble With Heroes.... Her story, The Marrying Maid, was an honorable mention for Best SF of 2010.

For more about her work, please visit http://www.jobev.com

Product Description


When a brutal lord invades and takes possession of her castle, the orphan Imogen of Carrisford turns to FitzRoger of Cleeve, a ruthless champion in battle.

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Imogen of Carrisford stood in the dark cold, shivering at the muted sounds of horror. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
If you like fast paced adventure with romance in historical settings, this is the book for you. It is very difficult to put the book down. It can be a bit gritty and medieval life is shown at its best and worst, but the story is told so well that you can enjoy it and read it again. Wonderful hero!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By R. J. Mills on 3 Sep 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This was both exciting and romantic. It took you back to a different age and how they lived. It kept up the excitement throughout I was anxious to see how it resolved but sorry I had finished .I recommend a really good read. Which the reader can imagine time to live at those times.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 22 reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
A Fun Exciting Story 22 Jun 2000
By "-renee-" - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Jo Beverly's Dark Champion is a delightful book. I enjoyed reading it and couldn't wait to reach the end. The story is creative and the characters are exciting and unpredictable.
Immogen of Carrisford desperately needs to save her home. After the unexpected death of her father, her castle is seized by a ruthless warlord. To save herself and her people she must find a champion.
Tyron FitzRoger of Cleve steps in to save Immogen and her castle. He has his own agenda mainly to marry Immogen. Immogen considers him to be a strong arm who is being paid to save her castle.
The relationship between the two moves back and forth with Immogen making desperate attempts to maintain her freedom while Tyron skillfully manuevers her into a marriage agreement. The two face certain peril throughout the story as they try to ellude attempts to drive them apart.
Dark Champion is an excellent historical romance. It has all of the drama you would expect during the reign of King Henry of England.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This one was very well done. 15 July 2005
By a-wish-upon-a-star - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I don't usually like to read medievals - if they are realistically portrayed they are too dark, and if they are not realistically portrayed - well, I don't like unrealistic books. But I love Jo Beverley, so I tried this one out.

As far as being realistically portrayed - that's a big yes! As far as being a dark novel - that's a yes, too. There are some descriptions that are so graphic... well, I don't usually go for that, but like I said, I love Jo Beverley, and this was only a small part of the book... It was worth it. This is a very realistic novel in every way, and Ms. Beverly does not shy away from describing every aspect of medieval life, whether that is something that will offend modern sensibilities or not.

In fact, Jo Beverley doesn't shy away from exploring any issue at all, as you can tell from reading some of her other novels. One of the issues touched on in this book is the role that religion played in midieval life, and the mindset of the people who lived in those times. A large part of the plot hinges on the priest and the way his mindset affected the characters in the story, and that was absolutely realistically portrayed, and not only that but I have read many books set in the same era that bypassed this aspect of their lives totally. It's hard to understand how you can write any kind of medieval book, consider yourself an historical writer, and completely ignore the religious aspect, but many other writers do do that. Not Jo Beverley.

What I like about Jo Beverley is what I perceive to be her emotional honesty - this is someone who is very comfortable in her skin, and she is therefore able to examine all the human emotions - whether good, or bad - but never with a bias, she is always fair. She doesn't say - this emotion is good, this one is bad - rather, she brings up her characters feelings, their thoughts, and she presents them to the reader - you make your own judgments. I really like that in a writer.

I have one minor complaint to make about this book, however. Jo Beverley writes with a certain respect for her audience - she's not one of those writers to rehash what she wrote three pages ago in case the reader missed it - she assumes the reader is intelligent and did not miss it. She also does not spend a lot of time explaining why her characters do or do not do something - she assumes that you will pick that up on your own, as you read the story. That's good, but also it has its drawbacks. In this book, for instance, the whole last episode of the story - where the h/h are separated for a while - I have to admit I was somewhat confused about the whole story - as to why they both acted the way they did. Make no mistake, where Jo Beverley is concerned, there is always a *good* reason for each of her characters actions - it's just that she didn't explain it, and I spent three days racking my brains trying to figure it out.

On the other hand, this aspect of Jo Beverley's writing (that she doesn't explain everything, but shows you how the characters react and lets you make the assumptions on your own) is what I like best about her books. But in this case, maybe because this story was set a thousand years ago, and I don't generally read books set in that time period, I was somewhat more at sea than I would otherwise be. I would have liked, in this case, for her to explain how the mideival mindset towards *honor* works, and how it differs from the modern mindset of how we perceive things today - and how the hero's feelings of "honor above all else" affected this story's outcome.

I finished this book with a renewed respect for this author - a respect for someone who has such a rare and complete understanding of the both the intellect and the emotions - kudos to Ms. Beverley!
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Accurately Reflects Midieval Attitudes 12 Aug 2006
By lovesbooks - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"Dark Champion" is set in the middle ages and begins with Imogen's witnessing the rape of her servant and the taking of her castle. Imogen disguises herself as a pregnant peasant and walks to FitzRoger's castle to beg for help. Unlike most romantic heroes, FitzRoger is a hard man, not instantly smitten with the heroine; instead, he does not trust her. Imogen witnesses him whip a man for drunkenness. Later, we found out that he had also raped and killed a child; my bet is that Ms Beverley thought if the offense were just drunkenness, the reader would dislike FitzRoger too much. Imogen does not trust him, nor like him, but she needs him. Of course, he does take her castle back and they marry for political advantage. She is only 16, overwhelmed, fearful, and often behaves badly toward him. He, in turn, admits that he married her for her wealth and that he would have married anyone, of any description, with such, and he frequently warns her to behave or he may beat her. Are their behaviors historically accurate? Probably. Were they attractive? No. The book did keep my interest, however. Gradually, they change toward one another, but FitzRoger at the end is forced to lash Imogen once to save her from a much worse punishment from the king. She, in turn, is relieved that he has been so merciful. Although believable in the context and historically, it did not make me like him. So, if you want a book that reflects midieval attitudes more accurately than those in most romances, you will like "Dark Champion." If you like your history with a more romantic hue, this book probably won't appeal to you.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Dark Champion 4 April 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I read this book because I fell in love with Jo Beverley's works after I first read Lord of My Heart. This books definitely holds up to Beverley's excellent style of writing.
I was very impressed throughout the book. Any Jo Beverley fan will be pleased, as well. There were a few sections where I was frustrated with both the heroine and the hero (for being dense, and not confiding in each other). But then again, misunderstanding is so essential to Jo Beverley's plots. No one would want to read a book that finished before it even really began.
A superb book. Well worth the reading time. Excellent for romance lovers; excellent for historical fiction; excellent for medieval fiction.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Oh my.... so confused! 14 May 2003
By Jojo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Ok, I had totally forgotten that I had previously said that I was going to be more careful about reading JB's medieval romances! Opps! I did it again! This one is really hard for me to give a review on. On one hand, this is not at all my usual type of read (in fact, I usually RUN from this type!); On the other hand, I have to admit that JB has just done an excellent job on this story! I started out only having a grudging respect (& no liking) for the heroine.... by the end of the book, I couldn't have admired her more. The hero was to die for thoughout the entire story.
However, as I have found in the past, JB gives a terribly historically correct accounting of the lives the people led in the Middle Ages.... YUCK! However...... after just a few chapters, I knew that I didn't like this type of writing.... AND I knew that I was going to HAVE TO finish the story! (yes, I'm often confused! lol) So, as far as a recommend: For those of you that can't handle brutality - DON't read it; However, if you like a historically correct medieval romance, & those realities don't bother you, then this would most probably be an excellent read..... Your decision. Happy Reading!
(p.s. - now I just can't figure out if I want to to try another one! lol decisions, decisions, decisions!)
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