The Turncoat Renegades Revolution
I am going to start this review off by saying this isn't a Romance, even though it is being reviewed on several Romance sites. I am usually a reader of historical romance, because straight historical fiction tends to bore me to tears. Nothing about this book even approximates boring. It held me riveted... I mean, "take a long lunch break" kind of riveted, because I couldn't bear to put it down and return to my desk.
Thorland masterfully crafts Kate Grey as a Quaker woman turned Rebel spy, who remains true to herself even as she changes into someone she doesn't recognize. The Revolutionay War was heart-wrenching and harrowing, and Thorland shows it in all its unsentimental detail. She doesn't need to embellish it - her scenes suggesting rape or worse don't need details to shock, even as we understand and abhor that such things happen in war. There is a hero and an anti-hero whom both tug at Kate's heart, and enough historical detail to keep the time period front and center without losing a reader with a short attention span.
My favorite part of this book, however, was the writing. The prose is breathtaking without being florid. Thorland writes like Ken Follett, at his best. High praise, as Follet is one of my all-time favorite authors.
My only criticism of the book is the ending, and I actually have to give kudos to Ms. Thorland for not giving into what was surely an urge to gift the protagonists with a story-book ending. I wanted a happily ever after (must be the romance reader in me). I didn't get it. Nor did I get clear closure on why the anti-hero made the choices he did in the end, against what seemed to be clear motivating factors on his part. However, I am adult enough to acknowledge that doesn't make the ending wrong.
Wonderful job, and I can't wait to see what Ms. Thorland produces next!