Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Blog Tour and Review: The Sumerton Women by D.L. Bogdan

First line: She hid in her mother's wardrobe.

Synopsis: Orphaned at age eight, Lady Cecily Burkhart becomes the ward of Harold Pierce, Earl of Sumerton. Lord Hal and his wife, Lady Grace, welcome sweet-natured Cecily as one of their own. With Brey, their young son, Cecily develops an easy friendship. But their daughter, Mirabella, is consumed by her religious vocation - and by her devotion to Father Alec Cahill, the family priest and tutor. As Henry VIII's obsession with Anne Boleyn leads to violent religious upheaval, Mirabella is robbed of her calling and the future Cecily dreamed of is ripped away in turn. Cecily struggles to hold together the fractured household while she and Father Alec grapple with a dangerous mutual attraction. Plagued with jealousy, Mirabella unleashes a tumultuous chain of events that threatens to destroy everyone around her, even as the kingdom is torn apart...

My thoughts: This is the first book I've read by D.L. Bogdan and I really enjoyed it. I have come to love books set during the Tudor Period and this one fit in quite nicely but with a twist. Instead of focusing on the king or the court, it's focus was on a family and how they survived during the time of religious turmoil.

Cecily was orphaned at a young age and sent to live with the Earl of Sumerton and his family. She grows up with his children, Brey and Mirabella, and becomes close with both the Earl and his wife, and also with the family priest, Father Alec. As the years pass, there is happiness, sadness, love found, love lost and grief for this family.

Primarily the focus is on Cecily and Mirabella, two strong-willed women with very determined paths in life. Mirabella, driven by her religious beliefs, is jealous of the easy relationship between Cecily and Father Alec. This leads to some actions later in life that have severe consequences for all.

This book gives lots of insight into what life was like during King Henry VIII's reign when he broke from the Catholic Church and also gives us glimpses into the work of the reformers. It is a story that shows the importance of forgiveness, not only for yourself but for others as well and that without forgiveness, it is hard to let go of the past and move on with life. 

I liked this book and am looking forward to reading D.L. Bogdan's other books, Secrets of the Tudor Court and Rivals in the Tudor Court. She is definitely an author that will be staying on my radar. 

Have you read anything by D.L. Bogdan? Do you have a favorite book set during the Tudor Period or favorite author that writes during this period?

About the author: D.L. Bogdan is an ongoing student of history, musician, and avid reader who enjoys travel, the outdoors, and time with her family and friends. She is a proud wife and mother who makes her home in central Wisconsin. She is the author of Secrets of the Tudor Court, Rivals in the Tudor Court and The Sumerton Women.

For more information on D.L. Bogdan and her novels, please visit her WEBSITE.  You can also find her on FACEBOOK and TWITTER.

Also, be sure to check out all the other stops on the blog tour and follow the tour on Twitter (hashtag: #SumertonWomenVirtualTour)

I received a complimentary copy of The Sumerton Women by D.L. Bogdan from Amy at Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours.



  1. This does sound interesting! I haven't read anything by this author yet. Very nice review.

    1. It was really good! I will be going to the library later this week to see if they have her other books!

  2. Hi Kristin,

    Nice review, of a new to me book, from a new to me author.

    I don't read a lot of historical romance, but as you say, this one seems to be written with a slightly different twist to it, which makes it sound very interesting and slightly malicious as well.

    A good addition to my list, thanks for the recommendation.


    1. I love finding new-to-me books and authors - I think that is the best thing about book blogging!

  3. Yay! I'm going to be on this blog tour later on so I'm glad that you liked the book!

    1. I'll be sure to stop by to see what your thoughts are on the book.

  4. I am obsessed with the Tudor era. It's probably my favorite era in history. My favorite historical figure is Anne Boleyn. My other is Elizabeth Bathory. Such a departure from each other yeah? But back to what I was saying. OMG LOVE THE PREMISE OF THIS BOOK. Definitely going on my to read list.

    Rebecca @ Vicariously

    1. I love the Tudor era, too. I've read quite a few books about Anne Boleyn but I've never heard of Elizabeth Bathory. I'll have to look her up.


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