|The Golden Braid|
Thomas Nelson (November 17, 2015)
Reviewed by Noela Nancarrow
5 Stars *****
‘The Golden Braid’ delivers a sublimely executed retelling of the classic tale Rapunzel ~ flourishing with chivalrous and daring deeds, burgeoning faith, and a beautifully enchanting though conflicted romance. Taking place during the 15th century in a world so vastly contrasting to ours; we visit imposing castles and encounter heroic knights engaging in clanging swordfights. In reality, our worlds are not so dissimilar in the fact that evil and jealousies still reside in the heart of man. But the beauty of the author’s gifted and mesmerizing story-telling, is that we may escape with our imagination to an exquisitely inspiring and unforgettable, happy-ever-after!
Naïve and innocent, the fair maiden Rapunzel with golden, flowing hair, is once more torn from a village as her oppressive mother moves them on, after a young farmer asks for Rapunzel’s hand in marriage. Again, her mother cites the evils and deception of men. Though uninterested in this man, Rapunzel is disheartened to be uprooted repeatedly, never having a chance to belong, to make friends, or especially to learn to read. She hopes that with this next move to the larger city of Hagenheim, she may yet fulfill her yearning to read at least. When along the road, they are set upon by some brigands; her mother’s dire warnings of men seem to be proving true.
In the wake of being rescued by the gallant knight, Sir Gerek, everything that is instilled in Rapunzel by her mother regarding men, has her questioning its validity. Though her knight protector seems arrogant, he also proves to be honourable and curiously pleasant to look at and be with, which greatly perplexes Rapunzel. In Hagenheim, she grows fonder of this gruff though kindly knight despite knowing he has vowed to marry only for riches and rank. Here though in this city of secrets, Rapunzel’s life is turned on its head as mysteries and betrayals uncovered will change her life forever. Will the poor, peasant maiden ever find liberty and love or stay chained to lies and deception?
It was almost dungeon-worthy torture having to set the book down, but then neither did I want to make it to the last page! There was also a wonderful anointing on this tale that lifted my spirit as well as imagination, illustrating the scriptural admonition of ‘not leaning unto your own understanding’. The Golden Braid is a truly charming book, and a top favorite of mine for 2015!
* * * * * * * * * * * * *Available to purchase at these places: Amazon; CBD; Barnes & Noble; BAM; and others!
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