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4.8 out of 5 stars46
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 14 February 2006
Elizabeth Chadwick is a wonderful writer of historical novels, managing to draw you back through time by her magic blending of words and accurate knowledge of her time periods.
She doesn't disappoint in 'The Love Knot'. Set in a turbulent period of English history, namely the Anarchy or first English Civil War of the 1100s, the two main characters give us a viewpoint of those people who were not quite of the nobility as well as offering a fascinating insight into medieval midwifery and superstitions through the eyes of Catrin, the heroine. Oliver is a different kind of hero, too, not immediately obvious. But his loyalty to his patron Robert of Gloucester and his steadfast nature as well as his need to love gets under your skin.
A brilliant book. Curl up in an armchair with a hot cup of tea and prepare to be taken back in time....
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on 24 August 2003
This story centers around Oliver Pascal, who returns home from a pilgrimage in the Holy Land, only to find that he has lost his lands to Flemish mercenaries, in the pay of King Stephen of England. He becomes a hearth knight for Rober of Gloucester, illegitimate brother to Empress Mathilda, hoping someday to regain his lands. He is a widower who lost his wife in childbirth.
He rescues Catrin from a razed village and brings her and young Richard, illegitimate royal son and half-brother to Robert of Gloucester, to Bristol. He and Catrin eventually fall in love, lose each other and come back together in time. But not before they undergo many adventures during the turbulent times of Prince Henry II and King Stephen.
This was a wonderful story, and I couldn't wait to read it at every opportunity. It portrays not only what life was like for the nobles but also for the common people in great, descriptive detail. A fantastic read! I found this book in a used book store and I'm very glad I bought it. Even though this title is out-of-print, it is worth finding! If you like/love medieval stories, this book is for you!
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on 16 November 2000
In true Chadwick form, "The Love Knot" transcends the genre with an epic tale of love and lust, loyalty and betrayal, and age-old traditions mix with 12th century law. Each page is full of rich and vivid color for the period. The historical accuracy of every aspect of the story was brought to vivid life and laid out simply to understand the politics of the time. Characters are well thought out and vibrant. Settings and costumes were not lacking in their rich detail. And old world traditions such as the meaning of a "love knot" bring more understanding of some of our modern day traditions. By the time I finished this book I was left enriched by the experience. "The Love Knot" is deservedly one of the best books that I've read so far this year and I will rush out to buy the others in Ms. Chadwick's collection.
~ Kemberlee Lugo, CompuServe Romance Reviews, Charter Member of RIO (Reviewers' International Organization), Copyrighted 2000
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on 23 November 2000
Summer of the year 1140, Oliver and Catrin are drawn together through the horrors of civil war; their love grows but is then threatened. Oliver is taken prisoner and Catrin returns to the husband she mistakenly thought had died in battle. Torn between love and loyalty this is a story that will have you turning the pages quickly wanting to find out what happen If you love medieval historical romance this is definitely the book for you.
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Much of Elizabeth Chadwick's research is carried out as a member of Regia Anglorum, this is an early medieval re-enactment society. Her writing in recent books has become much more accomplished. She now writes about the period with the convictions of her obvious knowledge of the subject and has also made a subtle change from writing what were in effect historical love stories (nothing wrong with that) to historical novels with a love interest.

The book is set in 1140 and England has not settled down to life under the Normans. It is over 70 years since the bastard Duke William set foot on English soil, but hatred is still simmering in English hearts and this hatred breeds unrest and civil war. Oliver Pascal chances on a village raided by mercenaries and rescues the survivors. One of them, an orphaned boy is the illegitimate son of the old king and his mother's maid, a young widow call Catrin.

Oliver escorts them to Bristol Castle and they are accepted into the household of Robert of Gloucester. Catrin finds herself falling for Oliver, but she is bored with the frivolity of court life and when Etheldreda the old midwife offers to teach her the secrets of her ancient art, Catrin jumps at the chance. But the midwife's life is fraught with danger, not least in the appearance of two men who threaten the couples lives . . .

The author's style is slowly changing, to my way of thinking for the better, but what does remain constant is her knowledge of the period about which she writes and her ability to draw the reader into the story, until they could almost be there. This is a rare talent indeed.
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on 15 February 2004
A gripping novel where you just can't help but feel the love and anxiety between the two main characters, Oliver and Catrin, at the turn of each page. After falling in love with Jamie Fraser in Diana Gabldon's 5 novels, I didn't think I'd find another author who could captivate me so much - but I have. Elizabeth Chadwick has captured the essence of history within a carefully-woven tale. A must for all you true romantics out there.
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on 6 November 1999
Elizabeth Chadwick's fiction will be appreciated by anyone who loves Barbara Erskine. The Chadwick novels are characterised by colourful and fast-paced action, memorable characters and totally authentic history. Completely unputdownable. Everyone I give them to becomes a fan.
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on 24 August 2000
This book is yet another wonderful tale from the pen of Elizabeth Chadwick. Readers of historical fiction who love the Middle Ages should not miss this compelling and well-written novel set against the turmoil of the Civil War between Stephen and Maud. The characters are convincingly drawn while the background oozes medieval details. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and added it to my EC collection on my keeper shelf.
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on 21 April 2009
This is a truly great read. You are transported back in time and really feel you are living along with the characters. The author's adding of small details such as costume of the time conjure up pictures in the mind and you feel as if you are watching a film. The author's main characters always appeal; you really care about them and their futures. Catrin is a believable character in that she unknowingly made a mistake in marrying the wrong man first time around....when she meets Oliver you know without a doubt they are destined for each other. The reappearance of the supposed dead husband is an irritating essential to the plot-we already dislike him and thus the scene is set for a thriller which will not end until his final demise. Another central character to the story Oliver's adversary de Mohun, (who once saved his life during the Crusades) turns out to be truly wicked and has to be reckoned with, but the author cleverly deals with this by not allowing our hero to actually kill him, rather the death is brought upon de Mohun by himself. Add to all this the author's careful research of midwifery and healing in the Middle Ages and you learn a lot as you go along, some of it surprising.
If you like a colourful romance where true love triumphs over adversity but with some 'meat' to it, adventurous, determined women and a real knight in shining armour then get this novel, settle down and enjoy!
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on 18 May 2007
This has to be one of my favourite Elizabeth Chadwick books so far. The main characters of Catrin and Oliver are written with wonderful feeling and detail and you find yourself engrossed in their stories from the very first page. This book is so riveting I read it in a couple of days and kept taking every opportunity to read it, including reading into the early hours!

If you are new to Elizabeth Chadwick start here you won't be disappointed.
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