“Conquering William” is my first book by Sarah Hegger, and is the third in the Sir Arthur’s Legacy series of medieval romances. I love historical romance, particularly medieval, but usually they don’t really transport me to that time period. Sure, they mention riding horses and having servants “draw baths”, but other than a few basic setting mentions, the stories are like any historical. Thankfully, this one is different.
Alice has just married her 4th husband and has low expectations for this match since the others didn’t exactly make marriage an enjoyable state for her. Her plan is to “grin and bear it” until she can conceive a child, then ignore her new husband and carry on. William’s marriage to Alice was arranged for a land deal, but he plans to make the best of it. Alice’s advisor/keeper (jailer), Sister Julianna, continues to get in the way of his potential happiness. Additionally, the more he learns about his new home, the more he finds that needs fixing.
I think that the historical setting really informed the characters here. Alice is more the product of her environment and raising than a strong, sassy medieval heroine that we often encounter, but she is probably a more realistic representation of women in that time. It was incredibly rewarding to see William win her over as he emboldens her to take her place in the household. William is a great character; he is the perfect representation of a pretty boy turned responsible. The only thing that took me out of the book was Sweet Bea and the couple of times she took her anger out on Alice. Perhaps I would understand her personality better if I went back and read her book, but it seemed a little rash and over-reacting. This one quibble is not enough to take away from my enjoyment of this book though, and I had trouble putting it down. The story in this one doesn’t let up and continues to reveal surprises up to almost the last page. The secondary characters enrich the story, and as I’ve said, the setting is completely realized and is the perfect backdrop to tell this tale.
The Bottom Line
If you enjoy medieval romance, this is a must! It is a true medieval with great characters and a captivating plot that clips right along. There were many well-thought-out, witty moments, and I will definitely read this author again. 5 stars