Heirs & Spares
J. L. Spohr
Plum Street Press (2013)
Reviewed by Nacoy Davis for Reader Views (12/13)
“Heirs & Spares” by J. L. Spohr is about the new King of Troxiden and his expedition to find a new wife and queen all while trying to rule a kingdom that he has recently acquired after the death of his brother. This book was a wonderful romance, full of things that make us women swoon. The main characters Annelore and William are truly lovable people and had me rooting for them and their love throughout the entire book. Annelore is a strong, educated woman whose desire is merely to take care of her home and the people who rely on it. However, she is called to a much higher position when the king chooses her to be his wife and the new queen of Troxiden. It was very enjoyable to mentally watch these characters slowly let down their inhibitions and grow to love each other. King William is a charm. While his dynasty takes place after King Henry the VIII, I loved how he was completely opposite of the ruler. His fairness and kindness is a nice change to King Henry the VIII and even William’s own brother who is described as ruthless and cold blooded.
As a fan of historical fiction, I truly enjoyed this book as it takes place in the time of The Reformation. Though this book was not heavily focused on the event, it did include many historical things that people of the time were going through: high taxes, corrupt politicians and clergy members, and the low and unexceptional place of women in those days. It was great to see a character like Annelore not only step up and except her fate but also be proud and accepting in her new role as queen. She embraces her position and voices her opinion, and to have a husband who allows her to be so vocal, even though it does not make the other men of the court happy, is a delight to read. This is a great book that keeps the historical version of what women were treated like in those times into account but still allows some creative leniency for love and romance.
J. L. Spohr’s “Heirs & Spares” is definitely a keeper in my mind and as a lover of historical fiction will keep a spot on my reading list. The author also makes note that there will be an addition to the series coming out in 2014. I will be sure to keep an eye out for it as I have really enjoyed reading about Queen Annelore and King William.