Young Adult Romance
"She would be oblivious to them all. A handsome man was paying attention to her, inviting her to dance, and she meant to enjoy it."
Rose is unsure about her new role as the healer's apprentice since she is actually fairly queasy at the sight of blood and such. But what else is there for a woodcutter's daughter besides marriage to the unpleasant men her mother continuously picks out. But working in the castle has more hazards than her apprenticeship - she is now exposed to the duke's two young and attractive sons. Hamlin is betrothed, intent on finding the conjurer who has threatened his future bride and forced her into hiding. And Lord Rupert has a less than stellar reputation. But how nice it would feel to be loved!
My Opinion: I thought that this was a fun reinterpretation of Sleeping Beauty with some good twists and turns that are not part of the fairy tale. Rose is a utterly believable character with understandable reactions and good character building. Hamlin is a strong character who is endearing. They make for a sweet romance that is strained by their circumstances. There is a little too much of of the Christian aspect that reminds me of priestcraft for me, but it is only in one part. Otherwise that aspect is merely individual relationships with God. The side characters are really good, especially Hildy and Gunther. All together I found this to be a sweet story with great characters and a great plot. Really worth the read.