Knight of Desire

Knight of Desire - Margaret Mallory Huzzah for enjoying a free book!Mallory's debut medieval pairs the wily Lady Catherine with the honorable, but stubborn and insecure, William FitzAlan in a hasty marriage. Catherine's husband had betrayed the Crown, but Catherine had been sending the prince messages behind her husband's back. The day the king's forces catch up with and kill her traitorous husband, she's offered a choice: live in the Tower of London, or marry William, who the king gave her lands to. Reasonably, she agrees to marry.The book shines on the virtues of its plot. There's angst, yes. Catherine was abused by her previous husband and is not terribly keen on the whole wife thing. William doesn't trust her or women in general. But the plot keeps twisting and turning, with running away to an abbey, royal visits, kidnapping, intrigues, and bad guys getting what's coming to them. She drops clues and builds foreshadowing subtly. Never did I think I had the next step all figured out, but neither was I ever totally surprised.None of this book is groundbreaking. You know these guys. She's spirited. He's alpha. There's a ton of misunderstanding and groveling. But the plot moves so well, pulling us along a surprising journey, that the stock characters are acceptable. They're not cardboard cutouts, but this is not a character study by any means. I enjoyed Catherine's poise and spirit and William's drive to do the right thing and ability to apologize when he's done quite the wrong thing, but they're very familiar characters to me.Regardless, I look forward to subsequent books of hers. She has a good voice for medieval romance, if maybe a touch too modern.