Blog Tour Review: Secrets of Her Forbidden Knight by Ella Matthews

About the Book:

Title: Secrets of Her Forbidden Knight

Author: Ella Matthews

Page Length: 368

Publication Date: Aug. 23, 2022

Publisher: Harlequin Historical

Synopsis: A dramatic fake betrothal story

She’s rescued a knight

Now she needs the favor returned…

When widowed Lady Johanne happens upon an injured knight, she sees an opportunity to form an alliance and protect her home, Castle Brae, from her enemies. The betrothal she proposes might be merely for appearances, but the very real attraction between her and Sir Alewyn thrills and disturbs her. For it’s clear he’s hiding something… Can she trust him with so much at stake?

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My Review:

I’m delighted to be on the blog tour today for Secrets of Her Forbidden Knight, an intriguing historical romance by Ella Matthews. The story follows Lady Johanne and Sir Alewyn, or Al, as they meet under unusual circumstances. Johanne finds Al beaten and unconscious on her journey back to Castle Brae, and she brings him back to care for him. When he awakes, Al has amnesia, but he soon remembers his reason for being there. Al, one of the King’s Knights, was tasked with investigating whether Johanna is working with the French and against England.

The story has a bit of suspense and intrigue, as there seems to be a constant target on Johanne’s back. Murder attempts, suspicions about her loyalty, forceful neighbors pressuring her, and threats of attack plague Johanne, who is doing her best to lead her people and protect her lands until her beloved young son is old enough to take over.

Johanne is a great protagonist. Loyal, strong, kind, and a great leader, Johanne faces so many difficult and potentially deadly situations, but she is so determined to protect and do right by her people, sometimes at the cost of her own safety and happiness. She is a selfless woman who constantly thinks about the well-being of others. She is also one of the few females in a leadership role, which makes her a target, so Johanne keeps most at arm’s length. However, Johanne also shows a more vulnerable side when she meets Sir Alewyn. With Al, she lets her walls down. Of course, she doesn’t know his true reasons for being at Castle Brae.

Alewyn, tasked with investigating Johanne’s loyalty to the King and the possibility that she might be working with the French, is determined to get to the truth and prove to his older brother that he is a capable and equal member of the King’s Knights. I think both Al and Johanne struggle with feelings of worth, as both seem to think they are not as good in their roles as they are. They are humble, much more so than many of the other leaders they face, and they are well-respected. They complement each other well, and their connection is strong very early on in their relationship.

Johanne and Alewyn have so much chemistry, and it’s wonderful to see both of them experience falling in love for the first time. Of course, with Al hiding his identity and his true reason for being there, Johanne’s neighbor pressuring her to marry, Johanne and Al pretending to be engaged, Al’s initial amnesia, the pair attempting to sneak into the enemies fortress, and more, the couple faces their fair share of problems. However, the way they work together and support each other, the way that Al helps her when she struggles, and the way Johanne shows Al how valued and honorable he is are all so wonderful. I so rooted for their happy ending!

And I have to talk about Johanne’s adorable son Cineas! He’s so sweet and curious, and his eager and optimistic nature is infectious. He’s the bright spot in Johanne’s day and in the story! And I love the relationship he forges with Al. They are such a cute pair!

I would definitely recommend Secrets of Her Forbidden Knight to readers who enjoy a historical romance with intrigue, an adorable and rambunctious child, and a great love story. Special thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources and Harlequin Historical for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.



Favorite Parts:

  • The romance!!
  • Cineas.
  • The intrigue.

About the Author:

Ella Matthews lives and works in beautiful South Wales. She writes medieval romances for Mills & Boon. When not thinking about handsome heroes she can be found walking along the coast with her husband and their two children (probably still thinking about heroes but at least pretending to be interested in everyone else).

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