Castle Contended Dive-in Review

Hello readers, today is release day for a new book. The book is A Castle Contended. This is the second book in the Castle in the Wilde series. Click here to read my review of the first book, A Castle Awakened. And then come back so you can scroll down and read my review of the second book.

A Castle Contended by Sharon Rose

Novel 2 in the Castle in the Wilde series

She loves her kingdom…and the foreign usurper they hate. How can she choose between them?

Beth finally understands. The despised foreigners are not what she believed. Nor is her noble role just a burdensome restraint. It also carries authority—and the obligation to use it wisely. Which might be more of a restraint than the proposed marriage she is evading. Now all she needs to do is convince an entire kingdom to respect the people they hate.

Before she can even try, unraveling deceptions rock her land. A duchess mysteriously dies. Atrocities in Tower Woods come to light. The governing assembly is being manipulated. The cry of Beth’s heart is the last thing anyone cares about. As for loving a despicable foreigner—intolerable!

Tristan would do anything to help Beth, but his foreign hands are tied. The only thing he can do, must do, is kill the enormous vixicats that terrorize the Wilde—beasts that have proven invincible for over a century. If he conquers them, he invites a siege to his castle. What is worse? Starving or becoming a vixicat’s meal?

How can Beth forge her newfound scrap of authority into a tool that is both subtle and powerful enough to return justice to her land? Especially when succeeding could turn the foreigner she loves into an enemy.

My Dive-in Review

A Castle Contended is the second book in the Castle in the Wilde series. It does feel very much like a part two, and I do recommend starting with book one, A Castle Awakened. There is a lot of character development in that first book that you need, to fully appreciate the character arcs that are completed in this novel.

My lest favorite character from the first book, Beth, became my favorite in this one. In the first book princess Ellabeth was very immature and acted like an entitled brat, but in this book we see how the attitudes of those around her very much fueled her ideas and actions. It took someone finally seeing her for the adult she was, for her to truly grow up.

This novel is Beth’s story but don’t worry the, dashing Lord Petram is still a central character, as he continues to hunt the dangerous vixicats that roam the Wilde. Much of his arc is just him waiting around for Lavaycia to sort out their inner kingdom politics, but he still finds plently to do to fill the time.

So we reach the central conflict of A Castle Contended. Politics and to a lesser extent genealogy.
For some reason this book struck me as more of a commentary on the practice of European royalty to marry within their own families. (Bringing up, both deformities from birth defects and with hereditary mental illness within the nobility.)

I didn’t find this change of focus as interesting. I really enjoyed the world building and exploration of A Castle Awakened. If the first book was a romantic adventure then this sequel was a political courtroom drama.

It featured a lot of debate and rhetoric, but very little action. (Unless you count the great Vixicat hunt, that scene had a ton of action.) Though, I did really like the part where the Duke of Maerton got put in his place. It was a good way to show that bullies don’t always get what they want.

Though it could be argued that the amount of justice served to people who actually deserve it, is the least realistic thing about this story.

On that note, the ending was almost too perfectly tied up for what I know to be a planned trilogy. I am very interested in what the author has in store for these characters next.

A Castle Contended is the second novel in the Castle in the Wilde trilogy. If you enjoy a story where wit and hope confront lies and hate, come and explore this fantastical world with medieval undertones and conflicted cultures.

The Castle in the Wilde books are available from Amazon and Kindle Unlimited. The print versions can also be ordered from local bookstores and libraries.

A Castle Contended – novel 2 releases June 24, 2021.

Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08R11LYLG

Other Amazon markets: https://books2read.com/u/bOXwQ9

For a printed book from your local bookstore or library, request ISBN 978-1-948160-23-0

A Castle Awakened – novel 1

The ebook version of A Castle Awakened is currently on sale for $2.99, so it’s a great time to grab it and start the series from the beginning.

Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08GL7QXB2

Other Amazon markets: https://books2read.com/u/3LY9qJ

For a printed book from your local bookstore or library, request ISBN 978-1-948160-21-6.

Author bio:

I started writing when I was seven years old. Okay, My Life as a Flying Squirrel may have had a couple spelling errors, but my classmates loved it.

Plenty of life has happened since that first story, and I’ve come to realize the things that fascinate me. People. Communication. Culture. Personality. Viewpoints. Beliefs. Anything that makes each of us beautifully unique. Small wonder that my art spills out in story form.

It was only a matter of time before I just had to share my stories. I publish fantasy and science fiction because they allow vast spaces to explore. My stories weave cultures and characters, who are more than they seem to be, into adventures with mystery, romance, and hope.

When I’m not writing or reading, I may be traveling, enjoying gardens, or searching for unique coffee shops with my husband. We live in Minnesota, USA, famed for its mosquitoes—uh, I mean 10,000 lakes and vibrant seasons.

Follow Sharon Rose Online:

SharonRoseAuthor.com

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