Cover Image: The Heart of the Rebellion

The Heart of the Rebellion

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Member Reviews

I loved learning about the Welsh rebellion and Rhys ap Tudor while reading this medieval historical fiction. It is not a time period I know much about, but I was reminded of the story of Robin Hood on many occasions while reading this story. It was the breathtaking cover that first drew me to this book. It well represents the feelings in the story. I was sucked into the story and could fully picture in my mind's eye all that the was going on. I loved the slow and gentle romance that moved the story along. Now, more than ever I would like to go explore some of those ancient castles. I am thankful for the author notes at the end that helps me sort out the fact from the fiction.
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First off, I love the cover.  It is beautifully done and draws me into the book.  This fascinating story, based on actual events from the beginning of the 15th Century was well written and suspenseful. The characters were interesting and diverse. The Welsh names  and words were a little bit difficult for me but the story made up for it.  I love the way that by following her own heart Catrin is able to find herself and take a stand. 3.5 stars
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This book was a decent read for being stuck at home with nothing to do. The plot moves smoothly and the style of writing is nicely done. There is enough action to keep a reader interested and there are hardly, if any, spots in the story line that drag on. Catrin is a spirited young lady who does not know her own level of courage or strength. She is an easy character to bond with and I adore her horse, Seren. Having once had a horse of my own that I had a close bond to, I truly appreciated how gentle and loving she was towards her horse. Seren is a spirited, beautiful stallion and would be considered too much for a noblewoman to ride. However, Catrin should never be underestimated in anything she puts her mind to.
Rhys and his brother have recently returned home from war and notice the changes to their small town. Their youngest brother is now happily married and seems to be the most levelheaded and observant of the three brothers. They are willing to pick up their weapons and return to war once more to help their beloved Wales to thrive despite the harsh English king. The romance is a slow burner and more believable than other stories I have read lately, and the ending wrapped up nicely.
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This novel was completely atmospheric and I loved the romance between the main two characters. I definitely recommend this series to any and everyone!
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This book transported me to Wales during the Midieval time period. I loved the descriptions of Wales and the developing story between Catrin and Rhys. It is a book that I would like to see a sequel to for Gwilym's story.
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I love love love Sian Ann Bessey's The Heart of the Rebellion. I highly recommend it and will give it a well deserved five plus stars.
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My favorite historical fictions are ones that prompt me to learn more outside of the book, and this one definitely did that! I found myself googling all sorts of welsh history the more I was pulled into the fascinating plot. The characters, even the minor ones, were well developed and I found myself interested in every little thing going on. The author balanced the medieval history with romance and rebellion to make for a well rounded, fascinating read.
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I really enjoyed this book!  It has the perfect mix of history, adventure, and romance.  I really enjoyed Catrin and Rhys growing relationship and felt for her during a particular part that I won't spoil here.  I highly recommend this book.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an E-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.
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What a fun and authentic book!!
I loved the Welsh setting, the historical intrigue and just the characters growing in courage.
In a sense, I feel like I haven't read anything like it. Sure enough, there are common elements -- untitled warrior in love with he titled lady,  unwanted marriage, and honor and justice at play. But Siann Ann Bessey knew how to make this story her own and that is why I couldn't put it down.
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I was anxious to read "The Heart of the Rebellion" after seeing a post about it on social media some months back and the author most certainly delivered all that I thought they would. There are the usual elements of romance that draws readers in, the misunderstood female protagonist, the deeply driven male protagonist, and the underlying currents of war and rebellion to stir it all up.
While it was a bit slow to start the novel certainly has potential and covers one of the most talked about periods of time, boldly working the trappings of a YA romance into a classic historical setting. I was very excited to have the opportunity to review this novel, it was a most pleasurable read.
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The author has used great historical research to bring the reader an intriguing story that will keep you turning pages in this book.  The characters are wonderful and the ending is perfect..  I will be looking for another story from this author.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher.  All opinions are my own.
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The Heart of the Rebellion takes place in Wales after the death of King Richard. King Henry is now on the throne and he is against anything that helps the Welsh people. After serving King Richard for three years, the Tudor brothers are returning home to find the island of Anglesey and the people there changed. The people are fearful and tired of being taxed by a king who doesn't care for them. The Tudor brothers and their cousin, the Black Prince of Wales, fight to free their country from English rule and along the way find an unlikely accomplice in the daughter of the local constable.
Catrin is shocked to learn that her father has agreed to a marriage proposal from the Duke of Bedford, an older gentleman who is ruthless and eager for an heir. Catrin has resigned herself to her fate and strives to find solace in her daily rides on her horse Seren. After meeting Rhys ap Tudor, she realizes that she has distanced herself from the people of Anglesey and not lived up to what her mother would wish for her. She starts interacting with the locals more and defending Wales to the Duke.
Sian Ann Bessey has done it again with another riveting historical fiction novel that will enthrall readers and make them want to learn more. The Heart of the Rebellion is based loosely on fact, Sian Ann Bessey does a brilliant job of painting a vivid picture for the reader. I thoroughly enjoyed this title and highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in history, Wales, horses or romance.
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The beautiful cover drew my eye, and when I read the description of the story, I knew I wanted to read this story. When I realized it was set in a part of Wales I have visited, it intrigued me even more. I love historical fiction, because I enjoy learning about other times and places. The Heart of the Rebellion, set in Wales in 1400, is a fictional account based on actual historical happenings—the rebellion of the Welsh people against Henry IV of England. The setting is richly painted and the characters are realistic, colorful, and engaging, although the Welsh names are unpronounceable! Rhys and Catrin, the main characters are easy to love and cheer for, while the Duke of Bedford is a true villain. I enjoyed seeing Catrin show her courage and independence, and Rhys was sigh-worthy—so valiant and intrepid, but with a tender heart. 

I recommend this book to those who enjoy historical fiction. I’m looking forward to reading more from this author.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Covenant Communications through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.
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I love reading historical fiction and learning about times and places that have somehow been forgotten or have been lost with the passing of time. The Heart of the Rebellion, by Sian Ann Bessey, was as pleasant to read as it was educational. I had limited knowledge of the background of Wales prior to reading this book and was eager to learn more about it after I finished this story. It was indeed interesting to see a small glimpse of what life was like at that time for the Welsh people and adding in some romance and character stories made the book flow and was enjoyable to read. There's talk of battles and warriors, but it did not overpower the journey that the characters went on throughout the book. You will find yourself rooting for the couple to get together, and for the Welsh to find the freedom that they so desperately want and deserve. I really liked how Catrin found herself and followed her heart and convictions. Life certainly isn't ever easy and the path we walk daily, as shown in this story, can be filled with trials, doubts and hardships. But overcoming those hardships to find freedom, love and peace makes those little trials worth it in the end. I felt that the book was well written and accurate for the time period. The side characters were also well written and added a lightness, humor and warmth to the story. I would highly recommend this book.

I receive an ARC of this book. My opinions are my own.
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I enjoyed this story. This was a great, historical fiction read. It was an interesting story with interesting characters. It's a book that you'll have a hard time putting down. #Netgalley #theheartoftherebellion
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I am a lover of medieval history and pretty much anything to go with the British Isles, I recently finished Wayne Grant's Roland Inness series and was looking for something similar.  I've also read a few of Helen Hollick's book and felt this would fit the bill. I was not wrong! I really enjoyed this book. Bessey does a great job of setting the scene and her characters are well developed. I love that Lady Catrin Buckley is not the damsel in destress in the tower but has real gumption. She is willing to sacrifice for what she thinks is right. 

My only issue with this book is the end. I tried to see if this was going to be the beginning of a series but was unable to find anything. The end of the book left a lot of questions. There were too many loose ends. I hope Bessey continues the story.
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This was an amazingly beautiful historical romance about the Welsh rebellion many, many years ago.  

Lady Catrin Buckley had an English nobleman for a father and a Welsh born mother.  She lived in Wales with her father.  Her parents had had a love match which is what she wanted for herself but when her father told her he had promised her hand in marriage to a man who was much, much older than she, she had a hard time reconciling what she had always wanted with what was to become her future.  When she met the English lord, she was immediately turned off because of his behavior towards the Welsh citizens and her Welsh heritage.  

She met Rhys Tudor, the oldest living son of a noble Welsh family, she was immediately attracted to him.  But, it wasn't until she saw his kindness to the common person, that she was reminded of her mother's kindness towards  others and began to see her place in the upcoming Welsh rebellion.  

I absolutely loved this story and the history that was told through the interactions between the characters and their honor and love of their country.  I was completely drawn in to the story and felt like I was right there along with them as they fought for their independence and love.  This story would be considered a clean romance because there was no foul language or sexual scenes.  It was just a beautiful story about a proud people who wanted to love and be accepted as who they are. 

I was given an arc copy of this book and I willingly and honestly offer my review.
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I  did like this book, but didn't love it. Wales in an unusual setting, Medieval Wales even more so. The events this book touches upon in the early 1400s, aren't very well known. Thanks to Shakespeare and History books I know a little about Owain Glyndwyr's rebellion and rather more about the reign of Henry IV. Yes, self-confessed nerd. 

So why the lower rating? I gave it a 3 stars for several reasons. First of all, I think I expected this novel to be more historical. It was definitely a Romance first, Historical second. There were a couple of really annoying romance cliches, such as the unwanted betrothal to the horrible, old and ugly man. Honestly, I'm really losing patience with cliches like this: its nothing personal with this author or book, just a general thing. 

Second: some of the characterization wasn't great. The villain is- beyond cartoonish. He's literally described as having pointed teeth at one point. In another scene he cackles evilly, and another still he and the King loudly discuss their nefarious plans in a room where anyone could eavesdrop. Its so predictable. He and the other antagonist have to do lots of bad things to demonstrate their badness.  Otherwise, they'd only be bad because we're told they are. 

The Welsh characters are all thoroughly good and wonderful. Almost too good to be true. Also, some of Katrin's actions- especially towards her father- really tarnish her good motives behind them. She doesn't seem to consider how he would feel at all when she effectively disappears. 
Someone else has to tell him she's safe, which maker her appear somewhat selfish and reckless. 

Some of the few fight scenes were good, but some details left me rolling my eyes. Killing a person wearing armour with a single trust. Really? So their swords just go straight through steel plate armour like a knife through butter. Cliche alert! 

As stated, this story does have its strong points. The descriptions of the landscape around Anglessey were brilliantly evocative, and some of the details about Welsh culture were incorporated well into the story. There was a lot of the stuff about food and horses, which should appeal to horsey people. I do also appreciate the fact that the author did not mention any plants or animals that would not have been found in Britain at this time, which is a common mistake in Historical novels by American authors. 

My only other minor niggle is that although the short list of Welsh terms at the front with their meanings is useful- I think the author also ought to have provided a note on how to pronounce a couple of the names.  Some people for instance won't realize that Maredudd is actually pronounced  'Meredith'. Its the original Welsh version of that name, but you wouldn't know that unless you realized the 'DD' in Welsh is pronounced as as 'th'. 

I do think though that the central details and historical backdrop of the Welsh rebellion in the early 15th century could have been handled better. This could very easily have been just a generic historical romance set in Wales with the names changed. 

Recommended to fans of Historical Romance, especially those who prefer more on the romance side. 

Grateful thanks to Covenant Communications for accepting my request to read this title through Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions expressed are my own.
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Thank you Netgalley and Sian Bessey for gifting me this book in exchange for an honest review.

If you're a fan of historical fiction and medieval England this book is for you.
I loved the read as it's in one of my favorite historical periods. and we have the mischievous Tudors, a family that always intrigued me about it's past.
It was really enjoyable to the point you forget it's fiction and that you're not actually there, watching the events happening.
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This was a great, historical fiction read. It is a lovely story with well developed characters and a rich in history plot. You won't want to put this one down.
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