Master of Torment

Master of Torment

by Karin Tabke


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781501104701
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication date: 10/25/2014
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Karin Tabke is a bestselling author of historical and contemporary romance, the CEO of her own business, and wife of a veteran police officer. Her books include the first three novels in the Blood Sword Legacy series: Master of Surrender, Master of Torment, and Master of Craving; the contemporary romance Have Yourself a Naughty Little Santa; and three erotic novels, Good Girl Gone Bad, Skin, and Jaded. For more information visit her website at

Read an Excerpt


May 27th, 1067
Rouen, Normandy

It seems, my good knight, i require your services once again in that troublesome land of mine across the channel," William said none too happily to Wulfson de Trevelyn, the captain of his elite guard les morts.

Wulfson bowed deeply to his king, who waved him up with an impatient gesture. The Duke of normandy and recently crowned King of england paced the thick wool carpet of his antechamber. William was dressed in the regal garb of one of his station. Yet his mail was nearby, a constant reminder that nothing had come easy to him, and at heart, he was a true warrior. Wulfson's king had fought since he was a lad to hold onto one legacy left to him by his father, and had brought an entire country to her knees to claim another promised to him by a dead king.

"I am, as always, my liege, at your service," Wulfson said.

"it seems conquering an entire nation is not enough to bring down that insufferable Godwinson dynasty."

Wulfson's interest had been piqued when he was privately summoned to his sovereign's antechamber. Now his complete interest was engaged. "Sire?"

William, nearing forty, but still a hearty man, had the strength and agility of a man half his age. His cagey eyes smiled despite his rancor. "Aye, lad, it seems the granddaughter of that blackguard Godwine by his eldest son, the outlaw Sweyn, has managed to not only wed with Malcor the Earl of Dunloc, a most strategic ally to the west, but the bloodthirsty bitch has proceeded to slit the poor fool's throat whilst in their marriage bed!"

Wulfson whistled in surprise and, he had to admit, awe. He'd heard tales of the Wessex women. Saxon and Viking blood ran hot and deep in their veins. Some, he'd heard, had fought beside their men at Stamford B ridge. They were a lusty, warlike bunch. A nd he could well relate. His own lust for battle was his life's blood.

William poured a hearty draught of wine into a golden goblet. He handed it to Wulfson, then poured himself one.

Wulfson accepted the offering and quietly contemplated why he had been called to his liege. William eyed him sharply. Wulfson considered his king's position in the matter, and mused out loud. "Should the House of Wessex raise its greedy head, who is to say a blood niece to the Usurper with ties to several thrones could not rally an army to claim for her son what is rightly yours?"

William drained his cup and slammed it down on the side table. "She has an army! 'Tis how she brought the earl first to his knees and then to marriage."

Wulfson chortled. "Hah! N ow that is a twist, a lady forcing a man to marriage!"

William began to pace anew and mumbled, "Would that I had a few more such as she here to guard my borders, I would have no reason to toss and turn at night."

Wulfson bowed to his troubled king. "What would you have me do, sire?"

William turned and faced his captain. "You are among the few in whom I place my complete trust. You and your Blood Swords are also the best at what you do." William scowled again. "I have received three missives in a week's time regarding what brews in Mercia. One from the lady herself asking that her claim to Dunloc be validated. The second is from the captain of her guard alerting me to her capture by her uncle by marriage, Rangor of Lerwick. And the third from Lerwick himself, informing me the lady is a witch who cast a spell upon his nephew and then slit his throat, only to lay claim to Dunloc's holdings. R angor, of course, now claims the holdings by right of blood, and begs me punish her for murdering his nephew."

"The lady is a murderess, and a widow without issue. What claim does she have?"

"There is no valid claim by her if what Lerwick says is true, but she claims to have a valid will." William stopped his agitated pacing and speared Wulfson with a steely glare. "The lady is a thorn in my side that will fester if left untended. Her dastardly deeds aside, any living Godwinson is a threat to E ngland, and so a threat to me. In your capable hands, sir knight, I put her life. See to it she no longer poses a threat to any man."

Wulfson was about to take another draught of his wine, his arm halted, poised in the air at his king's words. "But, sire, she is a royal."

"A royal who murdered an earl!"

Wulfson stood silent, giving his king time to think his request through.

William slammed his fist into his hand. "I know of no other way."

Wulfson scowled. He had no issue with seeing to his king's order — but he was not convinced the means would justify the end. Their eyes met, and Wulfson saw only determination in the king's gray eyes. William rarely changed his mind once it was set. Wulfson clicked his heels together; his spurs jangled.

"Consider the deed done, sire."

William's lips drew into a tight line before he spoke. "The fewer who know of your reason for returning to that insufferable isle the better. I will not have it said King William murders noblewomen, even though the law would support her execution."

Wulfson nodded. "I will send word ahead, then, to Rohan, for more men."

William turned, poured himself another cup, and took a long draught. " 'Tis a wise move. But there is one more thing. A small hindrance, to be sure."

Wulfson waited, already anxious to turn his horse's hooves back onto solid English soil.

"Rangor has arrogantly laid claim to the holding despite his request for my intervention, and he refuses to release the Lady Tarian. Understandably, the lady's army has laid siege to the manor, refusing any person near it."

"I shall see them both removed."

"I do not doubt it, Sir Wulfson. But tread lightly," William cautioned. "While I care naught what happens to the lady's army, I want no enemy of Rangor. He has longstanding alliances with the Welsh, who are already causing problems along the border. See the deed done, discreetly, and in proper time, so that I may find a suitable Norman bride for the new master of Dunloc."

Wulfson bowed to his king, then quickly exited the chamber, his blood quickening in anticipation.

England awaited. Copyright © 2008 by Karin Tabke

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Master of Torment 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
fleurfairy More than 1 year ago
I've read all three of the "Master" books by Karin. While all are great, Master of Torment really surpassed the others. I loved the female lead. Strong, smart, and still feminine. And of course, Wulfson was a fantastic alpha hero. I adored him. The details of medieval England are always meticulous and the plot was unique from most other historical romances. I also found this to be the sexiest of the series. This is definitely one I will re-read again. Bravo, Karin!
soto_caligrl02MI More than 1 year ago
There is no amout of words i can say to describe this book other then OMG!! i read it in one sitting, i was not able to put it down, from the moment our main characters meet you become captivated and you are pulled into their world with no way out. plot after plot it gets better and better, and you become falling in love with the characters and are rooting for them till the end. The romance scence are great, and there are tear jerker moments. If you allow yourself to fall into this story you will want to read it to the end, for this will be one of your favorites. No cheesy romance here, the author is great and she leaves you wanting more in this series, for this is her 2nd book and it was unbelievable. I highly recommend this book and you will soon agree. enjoy!
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1067 Saxon King Harold¿s niece Tarian of Dunlac believes a woman should have a say in who she should marry. Good with swords, she forces a man to marry her with her sword at his throat. Soon after her sharp nuptials, she becomes a widow.

When she is abducted by a brigand who tries to make her marry him, she refuses even under the threat of torture. Norman knight Wulfson de Trevelyn rescues her, but also knows his liege William the Conqueror has assigned him to kill all of Harold's surviving relatives. However, he cannot murder Tarian, whose courage and caustic tongue excites him. Tarian drugs Wulfson and takes him to her bed hoping to become pregnant so she can lie by claiming her child has come from her late husband¿s seed and not the Norman. As they fall in love, Wulfson risks his neck to keep Tarian safe from Normans, Saxons and Welshmen, but also does not trust his beloved.

Although the theme of a Saxon royal and a Norman knight fighting and falling love is a commonly used historical premise, Karin Tabke refreshes her Conqueror romance with the twist of the pregnancy ploy. Fans will enjoy the gender war between Tarian and Wulfson as each finds their taboo love testing their natural loyalties. Ms. Tabke provides medieval fans with a strong historical romance.

Harriet Klausner
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