To Touch the Knight by Lindsay Townsend
To Touch the Knight starts out as your average story, picks up pace along the middle, only to loose some of the magic along the way. While the historical accuracy is there, the characters in this novel just don’t stand out.
Widow Edith of Warren Hamlet was left for dead along with others from her village. Their master Sir Giles de Rothencey has locked them all away and left them to die, for fear they would spread the deadly pestilence on to him and others. But Edith and the others escape and she realizes in order to survive she must take a bold risk. She will now travel to knights tourneys disguised as the mysterious ‘Lady of the Lilies’ in order to ensure her survival and the survival of other villagers.
Whom she does not expect to encounter is Sir Ranulf of Fredenwyke…the handsome black knight. He is known for his trivial interest in the tourneys and the constant grief of his late wife that still clings to him. Yet after a few brief encounters with the ‘Lady of the Lilies’ he realizes he may have found a stunning mysterious woman who captivates him like no other. While their relationship blooms, the dangers of secrets and old foes begins to emerge and Edith and Ranulf must see if their love can survive the fight.
For me, To Touch the Knight was an interesting book, but not necessarily in a good way. At the conclusion of one chapter, I would be eager to go on to the next. Yet somewhere along the middle I put the book down and found my interest in picking it back up again was lost. Mainly because I just couldn’t fall in love with the characters. They came across as very cold and uninteresting.
While I try not to nit pick a book somethings in the book TO TOUCH THE KNIGHT had me shaking my head in disbelief. One major obstacle was the hero and the heroine’s beliefs in God and their views on religion. Their views were the complete opposite of one another and really were just ignored while their relationship developed. No matter what the time period, this was just an issue that I felt couldn’t be ignored. Also, their were situations and circumstances surrounding the secondary characters that I just found hard to accept as believable.
The characters were lacking in personality and I had such difficulty overlooking this problem. I kept trying to become engrossed in their romance, but just could not do it. These two had such deep trust issues with each other that I saw no possible way for them to build a healthy relationship with one another. Ranulf came into this story still grieving over his loving wife and as the book progressed I was amazed that it was Edith who claimed his heart. It seemed the most unlikely match. Their attraction towards one another was awkward, distracted and I felt severely misguided.
I truly tried to love this book and at some points I did enjoy reading it, but overall I just couldn’t follow through. I did enjoy some of the more passionate scenes as they were written beautifully. Townsend has promising narrative skills and as some of her strengths are shown in this novel, it is easy to see her writing could conjure a wonderful story. Unfortunately, this story just wasn’t strong enough to completely capture my interest. To Touch the Knight may have a strong historical setting and plenty of passion, but lack of convincing characters makes it a problematic read.