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Blog Tour and Book Review: Along Came A Soldier by Brenda Davies

Along Came A Soldier

When murder stalks St. Merryn, no secrets are safe…

A forbidden romance…

Set in 1820 Cornwall, Charity Perrow lives a sheltered life in the village of St. Merryn. When she meets and falls for Jethro Ennor, they soon learn their families are bitter enemies, and Charity finds herself torn between remaining loyal to her family and giving into her growing desire for a man they hate.

A village with hidden secrets…

A battle-scarred redcoat is lurking In Greenoak Woods. Struggling to keep his grip on sanity, he’s come home to settle the score with those responsible for the heavy burden he’s been carrying all these years.

An innocent man accused…

When a villager is murdered, the suspicion falls on Jethro. Now Charity must risk everything, including being disowned by her family, to prove his innocence and save him from the gallows.

But as Charity hunts for the truth, she begins to uncover secrets over a decade old—secrets that will change everything.

My Review:

I’m a little bit lost as to what genre, exactly, this book is supposed to fit in. While there’s a central thread of a romance between Charity and Jethro, the book is way too gory to appeal to readers of historical romance. The absolutely horrific, and far too graphically described, death of a child frankly puts it squarely into horror, for me. In fact, considering the number of murders committed by a single perpetrator, I reckon it’s actually historical serial killer fiction, but with regular folks figuring out the mystery rather than agents or the police.

Set in Cornwall a few years after the Battle of Waterloo, most of the characters we meet are residents of two villages, St. Merryn and Penrose. Young farrier Jethro and maid Charity are caught up in a violent web of lies when returning soldier Harry begins a violent campaign against those who wronged him before he went away to war.

There are quite a few deaths in this book, and every one of them is nothing less than horrible. There’s also plenty of violence - Jethro’s father is a brute - a sexual predator who targets Charity, and a lot of gore. I was put in mind of the Thomas Hobbes quote about the life of man being ‘nasty, brutish and short’. If you’ve got a strong stomach (Gangrene! Maggots! Bleurgh!) then you might enjoy this as the rare historical fiction which features entirely the lives of the ‘common man’ rather than the aristocracy, but for me, it was just way too gory. Three stars.

Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this title via NetGalley and Rachel’s Random Resources.

Author Bio:

Brenda Davies can trace her Cornish heritage back to the 17th century. She loves to indulge her passion of history and all things Cornish by delving into the past and bringing it alive for the reader to experience, which inspired her to write her debut novel Along Came a Soldier. She enjoys whiskey, chocolate, going to the theatre, and losing herself in a good book. She resides in Bristol, England, where she is currently working on her next novel.

Social Media Links:

Twitter - @authorbrenda1

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