Red Adam's Lady
Pan, 1976 (1973)
Reviewed by Wesley Williamson
ed Adam's Lady
is a tale of high adventure and romance in twelfth century Yorkshire. Lady Julitta, an unwanted orphan, is carried off to his castle by the new lord of Brentborough, who mistakes her for a peasant. She defends her virtue forcibly, and when Red Adam wakes in the morning with an aching head, he realizes his mistake and offers to marry her. She reluctantly agrees after he promises not to force himself on her, and is only gradually transformed from reluctant partner to willing assistant, comrade in arms, and wife in fact as well as name. Complicating matters are the treasonous plots of Julitta's uncle and neighbours, and an invasion by barbarous, marauding Scots.
ulitta is not the usual innocent heroine; she has grown up in the train of mercenary companies and is sharp witted and sharper tongued. Red Adam too is more than a cardboard hero. This is a romance more than a historical novel but daily life in a twelfth century Yorkshire castle forms a lively and lovingly detailed background. Perhaps not to be classed in the first rank of historical novels,
Red Adam's Lady
will remain one of my all time favourites for its lively narration, non-stop action, and unusual setting in the wild north of England in a turbulent time.
that this book is out of print but is still available from rare book stores.
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