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The King’s Man (Guardians of the Crown) by [Stuart, Alison]
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The King’s Man (Guardians of the Crown) Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 374 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

"Ms Stuart's novel will suit you if you are looking for adventure, romance and a dose of English Civil War history." Historical Novel Society

The second in a tantalising trilogy from award-winning author Alison Stuart, about warriors, the wounds they carry and the women that help them heal.
London 1654: Kit Lovell is one of the King's men, a disillusioned Royalist who passes his time cheating at cards, living off his wealthy and attractive mistress and plotting the death of Oliver Cromwell.
Penniless and friendless, Thamsine Granville has lost everything.  Terrified, in pain and alone, she hurls a piece of brick at the coach of Oliver Cromwell and earns herself an immediate death sentence. Only the quick thinking of a stranger saves her.
Far from the bored, benevolent rescuer that he seems, Kit plunges Thamsine into his world of espionage and betrayal - a world that has no room for falling in love.
Torn between Thamsine and loyalty to his master and King, Kit's carefully constructed web of lies begins to unravel. He must make one last desperate gamble - the cost of which might be his life.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1140 KB
  • Print Length: 374 pages
  • Publisher: Escape Publishing - Harlequin Enterprises, Australia Pty Ltd (1 September 2015)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers (AU)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B013AI1HVE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #181,561 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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This was a surprisingly powerful story, rather darker than the previous two Alison Stuart novels I have read. The vicissitudes of Kit’s life being on the losing side in a continuing atmosphere of hair trigger politics are very well delineated. Without long and turgid descriptions we are yet very conscious of a tenuous existence in the shadows, the danger and the loneliness that stalk the apparently cynical, insouciant wild liver and user of women.

There is added tension in the unrelenting presence of John Thurloe, Cromwell’s spy-master, ruthlessly manipulating all around him with a cold and calculated calm that is positively chilling. As the plot thickens, Thamsine falls into the hands of Thurloe and is made to work against her will for him. Psychological violence descends into physical torture as the plot and counter-plot are begun in the intricate game of survival.

The author manages to give a real sense of absolute desperation to both Kit and Thamsine. She makes this pair of anti-heroes highly sympathetic and likeable, whilst not varnishing their less admirable aspects. I found myself desperately hoping there was a highly compelling and ultimately noble reason for apparently despicable actions … but no spoilers, you will have to read it and see for yourself.

The story is worked through with good pacing and many tense moments. The drama of the romance that is born slowly and somewhat tortuously between the two is well played. There is one intimate scene that I found too long and too clearly described for my liking – though it was a wedding night …

The ending is well balanced, finishing the central story thread of this book and leading into the next and final book - that I am looking forward to reading when it is released in February 2016
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.7 out of 5 stars 22 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars just another example of why I love this author 19 November 2015
By Sarah L. Gruwell - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I keep enjoying Stuart’s works, one after the other. I really need to get to the one I have on hold as from the trend she’s been following, I think I’ll enjoy it. She excels in this addition as well. Her emotional resonance and ability to take her readers on an amazing, romantic journey always pleases.

I haven’t had a historical romance take me on as powerful an emotional journey as this one did in a while. All the trials that Kit and Thamsine go through, from kidnapping to jail time in the Tower of London to near-death experiences, all build up to a truly jaw-dropping amount of crying and soaring on the wings of happiness. To me, high-emotional content is key to a historical romance succeeding, and Stuart pleases on that front.

She also, again, takes care with her historical details for setting her scene and background for her story. She details the lives of the regular Joe Blows in London, bringing that human-filled, stinky, and vibrant world to life. She also draws on little known plots against Cromwell and the Parliamentary government to give action and suspense to her romantic tale.

As I mentioned before, I love Kit’s and Thamsine’s romantic relationship. They play off each other well, sparking with tension and depth not present in every relationship. However, they’re also strong as individuals.

I loved Thamsin’s strength of character and courage, willing to brave living on the streets and degradation rather than marry the abusive man her father betrothed her to. Kit is a man caught in truly trying circumstances, forced into actions he’d rather not take due to the side of the conflict he was on and forced to do truly horrible things to those he loves as a result. They even lead to some deaths which are truly heavy burdens to bear for Kit. Yet, he meets this with strength of character and firm sense of honor that I enjoyed.

This is another work I’d highly recommend to historical romance lovers from Stuart’s talented pen/computer keyboard. Her characters are strong in their own right and play off each other to create at moving romance. She also backs that all up with great historical details. Don’t hesitate to pick this title up! It’s a great find.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Story 20 September 2015
By Mrs. Helen Sibbritt - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
MS Stuart has never disappointed me with her stories and this one is a fabulous read with an adventure and romance set during hard times in England when Charles Stuart king of England is in exile in France and Cromwell is leading England there are of course problems within families and friends as the people take sides and government leaders and the people do what they must to survive.

Thamsine Granville has lost everything she is on the run from the man who would have her as a wife she has not eaten properly in days and in total frustration when she sees the man who is after her she throws a brickbat at none other than Cromwell himself this is so out of character for this well breed Lady, but there is someone else watching her from the crowd and when Thamsine is plucked from the throng of people and rescued by this man her life will change forever.

Captain Christopher Lovell otherwise known as Kit has been through wars exile and so much in his life forced to do things that he is not happy doing but must to save his brother, he gambles to earn money lives of his mistress and is a loyal King's Man plotting to kill Cromwell he has very few friends although lots of acquaintances and he moves around London a lot he is half French and he is a gentleman but the day that he saves Thamsine will alter his life.

I loved this story the emotion and hardships of the day are bought to life on the pages as Kit and Thamsine journey a rough and rocky path filled with treason danger murder and love to find happiness this is a story that will have you crying and feeling so happy for them as they overcome all that is thrown in their path and get their freedom to enjoy their lives. This is the second story in The Guardians of The Crown series and I do highly recommend both of the stories so far and I am very much looking forward to the third one in the series later on this year.

Thank you MS Stuart for another fabulous read one that will be on the keeper shelf and read many times over.
4.0 out of 5 stars The King's Man 20 September 2012
By Darlene Elizabeth Williams - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Cromwell is king in all but name in England, while Charles II bides his time at his cousin's Court. Numerous plots abound to put Charles back on the throne in England, but none have yet succeeded.

Thurloe, Cromwell's spymaster and Secretary to the Council of State, wields substantial power in England and holds the lives of his many unwilling spies in his hands. He is a master at inducing individuals to turn traitor to Charles with threats and inside knowledge.

Kit Lovell is one of those unfortunate spies, as is Thamsine Granville. Each for unique reasons.

Thamsine is on the run from a brutal man in London. He catches sight of her just as Cromwell's carriage passes between them. Thamsine hurls a brickbat at Cromwell's carriage to create a diversion to escape.

Kit Lovell, a plotter and traitor to own, rescues Thamsine from searching soldiers, only to later betray her to Cromwell. The price of her freedom is to provide with Cromwell with specified information.

Kit and Thamsine's lives intersect as they both attempt to fulfill Cromwell's assignments, but repugnance for their tasks increasingly escalates, especially in Kit's case.

As the reason for Thamsine's penniless existence in London becomes evident, Kit and Thamsine unite to earn their freedom. A task not easily accomplished in the shadowy world they inhabit.

Kit is not so quick at sharing the stranglehold Thurloe has upon him and is somewhat of an egnima to Thamsine.

The King's Man is an adventure novel set in a turbulent time. Each person suspected of plotting to overthrow the Commonwealth was made example, while the living threat of Charles II menaced across the Channel.

The King's Man is a light historical romance, with plenty of flair. An enjoyable read.
4.0 out of 5 stars Historically accurate, good story, worth spending my time on. 2 November 2015
By Sara in Australia - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
From what others say, the hero here can divide readers. SPOILERS: He is dark and he does have some bad stuff in his past and even in his present, but for me that was fine. It worked. I got that he didn't do it because he was a bad person, but because he was a good person so had no choice. Period is well created. I loathe history books with obvious historical mistakes and one of things I enjoy about Alison Stuart is that I can rely on her to be accurate. I know people say 'but it's fiction'. For me though, that's not a good enough excuse. Enjoyable read that kept me up rather later than I ought to have been.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Could Not Put It Down 21 January 2013
By Kindle Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Once I started reading the book, I did not put it down until the last page. Ms. Stuart is a masterful writer; it's hard to find another book to read after this one. I knew very little of the Cromwell period but Ms. Stuart draws you into the intrigue, danger, and horror of a civil war.

Don't miss this book or her other one of the same period, "By the Sword." Both are excellent.

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