Friday, 13 January 2012

When Women Were Warriors Books 1, 2 and 3 by Catherine M Wilson

Book one of this wonderful trilogy begins the story of a would be warrior, sixteen year old Tamras, as she leaves behind her childhood and her mother Tamnet’s house, to enter the house of her mother’s best friend, the Lady Merin.

On her arrival, Tamras is disappointed to find that she has been assigned to be the companion of an outsider, Maara. Not to learn to be a warrior right away as she had thought. When Maara is seriously injured, Tamras nurses her back to health again when others had given her up for dead. A bond between them begins to form.

When the time comes for Tamras to become an apprentice warrior, she chooses to remain with Maara, even though the lead warrior, Vintel had specifically asked for Tamras as her apprentice. This does not please Vintel.

The other women of the house are wary of Maara and don’t trust her. The Lady Merin herself has her doubts as to Maara’s loyalty and asks for Tamras to spy on her.

Will Maara prove trustworthy? Will Tamras agree to spy for Lady Merin?

This book was a total surprise to me. I had the book for a long while before I read it. Then only at the recommendation of a friend. I’m only sorry it took me so long to get around to reading it. The story is written in such a way, that I’d finished it before I realized it was coming to an end and immediately wanted to read more.

The story is told entirely from Tamras’s point of view. I loved her way of telling tales from the old days, beginning with, ‘In ancient days when only women were warriors......’ This made parts of the book read like a lovely fairy story. Really delightful. A story not entirely of bloodshed and battles as I had expected. But of a young girl becoming a woman in ancient times. All the trials and tribulations of growing up and experiencing physical love for the first time.

An extremely well written excellent beginning to the trilogy. I love the characters and the way they interact with one another. The scenic settings make it easy to lose ones self in and to imagine being a part of the story as only a talented writer can do.

When Women Were Warriors Book 11 A Journey Of The Heart

This second book in the trilogy follows Tamras as she begins another part of her journey into adulthood. Tamras is apprenticed to Maara and learning to be a warrior. Her best friend Sparrow is now apprenticed to Vintel.

Tamras and Sparrow are lovers, but Tamras has reservations and is wary, as Vintel is hers and Maara’s enemy.

When Tamnet, Tamras’s mother comes to visit her, Tamras learns that Lady Merin intends to adopt her and make Tamras her heir. When Vintel finds out about this, both Tamras’s and Maara’s lives are in mortal danger.

When Lady Merin falls ill and Tamras nurses her back to health, Vintel made sure vile rumours were spread around regarding Lady Merin’s alleged relationship with Tamras.

Vintel lures Maara’s away from the house and then imprisons Tamras. But Tamras has friends and they help her to escape. Tamras catches up with Maara and together they manage to over power the warriors keeping Maara captive and they go on the run.

Maara and Tamras travel far from Lady Merin’s house and hide in a forest. They received help from the people of the forest and lived amongst them while deciding what they should do next and when to do it.

As time passed, Tamras realized she had fallen in love with Maara. But did Maara feel the same? Will Tamras and Maara be found by Vintel? Will they survive?

This second book followed right on from where the first one left off. It is a continuation as to be expected in the journey Tamras’s life is taking into adulthood. The story is every bit as captivating and intriguing as the first in the series. It left me full of excitement and anticipation for the next instalment.

When Women Were Warriors Book 111 A Hero’s Tale

The last book in the trilogy begins where the second book left off with Tamras and Maara still in exile from Lady Merin’s house.

At the end of the winter, Tamras and Maara decide to begin the journey back to Lady Merin’s house. They know that they must return to put right all the wrongs that Vintel has caused.

Unfortunately on their journey, Tamras and Maara are taken prisoner by people from the north. Maara manages to negotiate for Tamras to be released, therefore putting her own life in the hands of an old enemy, Elen.

Tamras decides to follow Maara’s trail which leads towards Elen’s house, where she is certain Maara is going to be returned to.

This decision is the turning point for everyone. The house of Lady Merin, The Northerners, The house of Elen and all people along the way. This decision leads to Tamras proving her worth as a leader. But how does Tamras find Maara? Will their love survive? Battles are fought and won, but who is the victor? Will Tamras ever return to take up her rightful place as the adopted daughter of Lady Merin?

This is an enchanting, captivating, excellently written trilogy of books that I simply could not put down until I’d finished them all. I tried to read them slowly to savor them, but alas, my Kindle got red hot from turning the pages so quickly. But I am going to read them again, slowly this time.

The whole trilogy is told from Tamras’s point of view and is based on her life and her family, friends and enemies and her adventures along the way. We see her grow from an uncertain sixteen year old companion to the outsider Maara, to her apprenticeship with Maara and her eventual leadership status.

These books are a true delight to read. Page after page was feverishly turned in my quest to take the journey through life with Tamras.

There is something for everyone in these books. Excitement, adventure, love, betrayal, battles, survival, compassion just to name but some of the things you will find along the way.

This trilogy would be brilliant made into a film or TV series. The story and scenery would be a delight on screen.

If you are looking for something to really get your teeth into for the winter, look no further. I wholeheartedly and unreservedly recommend this series.

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