About the Book: In the early 15th century, during the middle of the Hundred Years’ War, England and France were fighting for sovereignty over France. It was a time of hand-to-hand combat, the invention of the longbow, and real knights in armor.
Simon Beauvallet was born in 1386, the illegitimate son of Geoffrey of Malvallet. After his mother’s death in 1400, he and his half-brother, the legitimate son and heir of his father, became great friends of the Prince, fighting against France.
Known for his silence and nicknamed “the Coldheart,” Simon nonetheless loved children and had a complex and deep personality. After the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, he was sent to besiege Belremy, where he met the lady, Margaret, who eventually surrendered to the English and became his bride.
My Review: I read The Reluctant Widow earlier this year and loved it. I thought it was delightfully humorous. So when the opportunity to review another Georgette Heyer book came along, I eagerly accepted. (because let's face it..the only books getting read in my life right now are review books)
I decided to branch out a little and try the historical fiction. And I'm so so glad I did, because I don't think I could have possibly loved this book more. Right away, I liked Simon the Coldheart, the man whose will was so strong every thing he set out to do he accomplished. In this way, there is not much mystery to Simon he is simply very driven, although he is fair. He seems to earn the respect and allegiance of those around him, yet he never falls for any woman even past the old age of 30. :)
However, when he comes against a woman with an equally strong will, who is also very clever, he finds that perhaps he can fall in love after all and winning her heart becomes the most important conquest of all.
I really enjoyed every page of this read. It was full of adventure and action, great humor, and the perfect sort of romance. I also enjoyed the deep friendship between Alan, Geoffrey, and Simon. I didn't want to put it down and feel that I could dive into another Heyer novel right now.
Now imagine my surprise when I started looking at a few other reviews and learned that Georgette Heyer actually didn't like this book and didn't want it republished initially. Some other reviews seem to suggest other readers feel this is far from her best. I guess that means I have much to look forward to, and it just goes to show there's a reader for every book, because I very much loved this book and pretty much smiled through the entire second half. What more could you want from a book?
If you are participating in the Buy Books for the Holidays campaign, I recommend you look into some of the reprints Sourcebooks has been doing of Heyer books for the regency romance lover in your life. The books are beautiful editions and the content couldn't be more pleasing. Check out Simon the Coldheart on Amazon.