Reviewed by Jen
Ever since I read The Guardian, I have been waiting for poor Duncan's story. The man has been utterly miserable since he was separated from his true love seven years ago. She is married to another --far from his reach-- and no other woman will do. I am happy to say that our wounded warrior is finally being reunited with his lost love and not a moment too soon.
Contrary to what Duncan has long believed, Moira is not living a happy life. She has no idea that her father forced Duncan to leave her all those years ago. She thought her beloved abandoned her. And then she realized she was pregnant --and she had to marry the man her father forced on her. That man, Sean, was an abusive beast. Thankfully, he never realized that her child was not his, but he made Moira's life miserable all the same. And he sent little Ragnall to foster with Moira's clan's enemy.
When a seer alerts Duncan that Moira is in danger, he quickly journeys to her husband's keep. One look at Duncan and Sean realizes Moira's deception. He beats her nearly to death, but she manages to best him and Duncan spirits her away to safety. The rest of the story follows the resurgence of their relationship and the efforts to rescue Ragnall.
Neither Duncan nor Moira has ever stopped loving the, but each feels like they were abandoned. Moira thinks Duncan left her and Duncan thinks he was easily replaced when she married two weeks after he was sent away. They're both right and they're both wrong. And even though they are reunited fairly quickly, the angst and hurt feelings persist throughout the book. There are a lot of misunderstandings and bad information between these two, which was frustrating at times, because they are so obviously in love and they have been through so much.
I had to remind myself more than once how much Moira has endured, because otherwise her behavior with Duncan would have alienated me. He is such a good guy, it's impossible to not be in his corner. She castigates him for not giving her enough credit, but when I see her trying to punish him for the past --or lashing out at him-- it's hard to sympathize.
Overall, I liked it. I don't know that I ended up loving it quite as much as I thought I would, but I am still glad I read it. Now, onto Connor's story. He has to end up with Ilysa, right?
*ARC provided by Forever
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The Warriorby Margaret MalloryRelease Date: October 30, 2012Publisher: Forever (GCP)