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The Black Lyon

The Black Lyon

4.0 202
by Jude Deveraux

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A Classic Love Story of a Fearless Lordand the Woman Who Tamed Him

Darkly handsome and rich beyond imagining, the bold English conqueror was called “the Black Lyon” for his lion like ferocity. He had no match among enemies, or women . . . until he met Lyonene, the green-eyed beauty whose fiery spirit equaled his


A Classic Love Story of a Fearless Lordand the Woman Who Tamed Him

Darkly handsome and rich beyond imagining, the bold English conqueror was called “the Black Lyon” for his lion like ferocity. He had no match among enemies, or women . . . until he met Lyonene, the green-eyed beauty whose fiery spirit equaled his own.

Through a whirlwind romance and stormy marriage, she endured every peril to be by his side, until vicious lies and jealousy drove her into danger. Now only the fierce Black Lyon can save her—for he alone has the courage to destroy the ruthless plot threatening to shatter the bond of love the Lyon and his lady vowed would never be broken . . .

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
The forerunner to Deveraux's beloved Montgomery series, this 13th-century historical, first published in 1980 and focusing on the tumultuous romance between Ranulf de Warbrooke and Lady Lyonene Tompkins, is one of the author's earliest works. While not as polished as her later titles, it is a fiery delight and essential for most romance collections. This title has been reissued multiple times.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Montgomery Dynasty Series
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.24(w) x 6.80(h) x 0.97(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Lyonene could hear Lucy's heavy step on the stone stairs and snuggled deeper beneath the thick coverlet. The January winds whistled outside the old donion, threads of cold air cutting under the wooden shutters, but her bed was warm and she planned to put off leaving it as long as possible.

"Lady Lyonene." Lucy pulled the bed-curtains back. She was an old woman now and far too fat. She'd been with Lyonene since the girl's birth and was much like a mother to her. "The lady your mother bids you dress in your gold tunic with the green surcoat and mantle."

Lyonene, who had turned toward the light only reluctantly, now looked with interest at Lucy. "The green mantle and surcoat?"

"There is a guest, an important guest, and you are to wear your finest clothes for the introductions."

Lyonene threw back the bedclothes and put a small foot on the rush-covered oak floor. The shutters were closed tightly against the cold winter, and the only light came from the small fireplace and the tallow candle on the tall iron stand by the bed. The soft glow highlighted the full curves of her slim young body. Lucy helped her mistress into the thin linen shift and then the woolen tunic, the tightness of which emphasized her womanly body. The sideless surcoat hid nothing.

"Know you this guest? He is friend to my father?"

"Oh no, my lady." Lucy fastened the thin leather belt about Lyonene's slim waist. "He is an earl, a man your father has not met, and he is a young man.,,

Lyonene stopped and stared at her maid. "He is handsome? He is a handsome young earl, fair, and rides a white stallion?" Lyonene teased the old woman.

"You shall see soon enough. Now get your comb so I may remove some of the tangles from your hair."

Lyonene obeyed and then asked, "Tell me more of him. What color are his eyes? His hair?"

"Black. As black as the Devil's eyes."

Both women looked up to see Gressy and Meg entering the small chamber with armfuls of clean linen for the bed. Gressy, the older girl, spoke. "It is an earl come, and not just any of the king's earls, but the great Black Lion himself."

"And black he is, too," Meg added.

"His eyes and hair are black as Satan's. Even his horse is all black."

Lyonene looked at them in horror. She had heard stories of the Black Lion since she was but a girl-stories of strength and courage. But each story was misted with a sense of evil, that mayhaps his strength was ill-gotten. "You are sure it is the Black Lion and no other? " Her voice was quiet.

"No other man could have such a look. I vow he gave me gooseflesh just to be near him." Gressy gave her mistress an intense look.

Lucy stepped forward. "Cease your foolish prattle! You'll scare the poor girl. Now get on with your work. I must go below to the Lady Melite." She gave Lyonene's hair a final combing and settled the transparent circle of silk in place with a thin gold fillet. "Now be still and do not muss yourself." She paused at the door, pointing a warning finger at Meg and Gressy. "And no more of this gossip. If black hair made us part of the Devil, there'd be a lot of us dreading the Day of Glory." She sniffed and patted the little bit of gray hair that showed at her temple between the barbette, a piece of linen that totally concealed her neck and chin, and the cascading veil that extended to her shoulders. Lucy imagined that her own locks were still the soot-black of her youth.

When the door was closed, Lyonene sank to the stone windowseat. "Tell me of him," she whispered.

"He is a large man ... "

"Strong . . ." Meg interrupted, but then, at Gressy's quelling look, she went obediently to her side of Lyonene's bed to catch the billowing sheet.

"Aye," Gressy continued, looking back at Lyonene and feeling confident in her audience. Lyonene would be the mistress of her own castle someday, but for now there was one area where Gressy was superior, and that was, in her knowledge of men. "He's the Black Lion and named for his Devil's blackness and for having the fierceness of a lion. It is said he can unseat twenty men at a tourney and that in Wales, in the wars there, he could hack a man or his horse in half with one blow."

Lyonene felt her face drain of color, and this encouraged Gressy to elaborate on half-heard tales.

"It is said his first wife tried to kill herself to escape him."

Lyonene gasped and involuntarily crossed herself. Suicide was a mortal sin.

"And the seven men-seven devils--he has near him . . ." Meg inserted, too excited to fear Gressy.

"Aye," Gressy said, her voice conspiratorial. "He travels with seven men, great huge men, black-haired all, but none so black as the Lion on his black horse."

"He has come here and I am to meet him?" Lyonene could not keep the fear from her voice.

"Aye. Your father and mother are below now with him. No one denies the Black Lion a request, however small." She straightened. "Come, Meg, we must go to prepare a room for this Devil's knight." She left the room, the wideeyed Meg trailing behind with the dirty laundry. Gressy was smugly pleased that she had caught the undivided attention of the two girls, for she considered them both girls, although neither was more than two years younger than she.

Outside the heavy door, Meg found her voice. "Is it true, Gressy, that this man is a spawn of the Devil?"

Black Lyon, The. Copyright © by Jude Deveraux. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Jude Deveraux is the author of historical and contemporary women's fiction featuring women of strong character and gorgeous, exciting men. Jude has had more than thirty books on the New York Times bestsellers list, 60 million copies in print, and has been translated into 18 languages. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading murder mysteries, working in her garden, and in boxing class she likes to show much younger males that she can throw a mean right cross.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
September 20, 1947
Place of Birth:
Fairdale, Kentucky

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The Black Lyon 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 202 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was my first "bodice ripper", back when i was a teenager. For such a book, it really is quite tame in comparison. I fell in love with the characters. I've read a few romances, but it is not my preferred genre. And to this day (25 years later), it is still one of my favorite books...one that i have read over and over and over.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the first Montgomery book and it reads like a first attempt at a romance novel. I used to read a lot of her novels, but I don' t remember them being filled with rape and abuse. Even if I could have gotten past page 80 (by which time the heroine had been raped twice and backhanded by her hero husband), the writting was awful! It was stilted, awkward, and had huge jumps in the "plot" that forced re-reading to try to make any sense out of it. The fact that this is considered a "romance classic" by so many women scares me and makes me question their emotional well-being- if you think rape and abuse are romantic, well that says too much about how desperate you are to justify your life experiences. And why does it have to get even one star before I can post this review?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Strike 1: book only 238 pgs long. Strike 2: plot all over the place Strike 3: lead female comes across weak and a bit of a flaky twit. Also.... the "love" scenes are not steamy what so ever. I would not recommend this book to anyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have loved this book since I read it as a teenager almost 30 years ago. I am glad that the main characters are not "perfect" as so many other authors write them. Jude's books are gritty and more real than most of the other romance novels I have read. This story is the first in the line about the lion belt and is well worth the money and the time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Been a fan of hers for as long as i can remember. Always happy with her books. This was a good one i couldnt put it down nothing new for me when i read her books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has a nice variety of events and does not dwell too much on the lesser events, which was good. Although some may be offended by Ranulf behavior toward Lyonene, keep reading and you should be very pleased! Very good romance!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading this book, very good plot, keeps you entertained
bookholiday More than 1 year ago
An exceptional book- I would highly recommend it. It has very good character development. A classic who-dunnit.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read books written by this author before and love the genre.. however i was disappointed with character development and appalled by the rape scenes (yes there is more than one) and the other abuse between the main characters. I don't agree with glamorization of domestic violence and think I will be enjoying the many other wonderful writers of this genre. I recommend not wasting your money on this book!!!
alexis_kirsty More than 1 year ago
I was quite surprised to read that a reviewer was so put off by reading this and i had to review myself. Although the lead male does strike lyonene once it is when he believes she hates him, has cheated on him, dares to have tricked him into a marriage and he is also drunk and has many internal demons from his past (dont worry im not giving the story away this happens very near the begining) the book continues on and they overcome this initial promblem and the hero does love his heroine, truly, where he would never hurt a hair on her body. In conclusion, this is not about an abusive husband AT ALL, not even close. It is a very good read, one i have re-read many, many times and i highly reccomend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book at least 20 times when I was in high school. I have been looking for it for years. I can't wait to read it again
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good story but could have been better. All the mistrust back and forth got a little tiring.
Wagalena More than 1 year ago
Hightly recommend this book. The characters come across as real and you get quickly hooked and hate to put this book down. Great romance and intrigue.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Needs better story line
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There was no plot and it seemed thrown together overnight to privide readers with a history of the lyon belt and the montgomery family. Jude really needs to come up with some more original plots.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really loved the story , but I wasn't so sure of the ending . It kind of left everything unfinshed because there was no mention of what happen to the kidnappers . Maybe another story taken off from this .That would be nice.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ranaulf is a sick abusive man. He is not "gentle" by anyone's estimation. He is sadistically jealous, then pathetically remorseful....again and again. If he were a modern man he would be charged with assault and his wife would be in therapy for sticking with such a jerk. Rape is not love. Physical abuse is not love. This is not romance.
Anonymous 5 months ago
Anonymous 6 months ago
A fun read
Anonymous 8 months ago
Scenes jumped all over; plot felt forced; no real conection to the characters. Wont be reading anything else from this author.
Anonymous 11 months ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excited to read the next fourteen...
4faith More than 1 year ago
Fantastic story with wonderful characters
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best love stories I have read in a long time! I want to be loved like Ranulf and Lyonene love each other.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have this book in my library and read it many times. One of my favorites.