by T. J. Bennett
Mass Market Paperback: 458 pages
Publisher: Medallion Press
The Legacy, a historical romance, is a marriage of convenience story, but it is unlike the contemporary incarnation of this romance standard. T. J. Bennett has crafted a story that is reminiscent of the depth historical romances once had years ago. In recent years, that depth of character and story in many cases has taken a back seat to increased sexuality and eroticism. The extra spice, though pleasurable in and of itself, has come at the expense of big, bold stories.
Like many fans of the historical romance genre, I want it all - the sensuality AND the big story peopled with memorable characters who are multi-dimensional, conflict-ridden, and driven to sometimes desperate action.
In The Legacy you'll get that. In fact, the uniqueness of this story is evident from the first page when you see below the chapter heading: "Anno Domini 1525, Wittenberg, Electoral Saxony."
Yes, it's set in feudal Germany just after Martin Luther had begun publishing his reformation writings.
Baronesse Sabina von Ziegler, a former nun, is a ruined woman forced by her vengeful stepfather into an arranged marriage with a commoner, widower Wolfgang Behaim.
Each has been betrayed by Sabina's stepfather. Each has secret plans to bring to fruition. Neither plan to consummate the marriage. Yet, fate and desire have a way of interfering with the best laid plans, as we all know.
Set against the violent backdrop of a peasants' revolt and religious upheaval, T. J. Bennett has crafted an uncommon historical romance, and it is uncommonly good.