Death and life are in the power of the tongue.
Alyce Bradley has few choices when her father decides it is time she marry as many refuse to see her as other than the girl she once was—unruly, outspoken and close to her grandmother, a woman suspected of witchcraft.
Thomas Granville, an ambitious privateer, inspires fierce loyalty in those close to him and hatred in those he has crossed. Beyond a large dowry, he is seeking a virtuous and dutiful wife. Neither Thomas not Alyce expect more from marriage than mutual courtesy and respect.
As the King of Spain launches his great armada and England braces for invasion, Alyce must confront closer dangers from both her own and Thomas's past, threats that could not only destroy her hopes of love and happiness but her life. And Thomas is powerless to help.
'People never forget. When the fancy takes them, they bring the old stories out and embroider them further.'
Alyce and Isabel, two sisters reaching womanhood in the late 1500's. The two have always in a way tried to out do the other, and Alyce always was one to not abide by the seen but not be heard unspoken rule expected of women. Isabel seems to have it all, a husband and a child on the way. Alyce however could care less about marriage and children, from what she has seen she doesn't know if she ever wants to be ruled over by a male. Alyce's father is done with her nonsense, and decides she needs to marry. Albeit Alyce pushed back, they come to an agreement that Alyce will have the final say. To her fear, she thinks that she will be wed to her father's longtime journeyman, Robin. A man she has always spited and one who has shown that he will take whatever he wants. But another unexpected suitor is thrown into the hat. A decision is made and Alyce is to marry. Thomas Granville has quite the reputation for being a privateer and womanizer, however Alyce is bound to try and give it a shot. What does she have to lose at this point, she was already forced to marry. The two are cautious around the other not sure the intent, but still wanting to be honorable and make things work. Alyce often struggle with Thomas being gone due to his privateering, and it is decided that she will take a visit back at her old hometown. It has been some time since she has seen her family. As always were, Isabel is fighting to prove she is better and has everything better than Alyce when she comes upon Alyce and her own husband. What Alyce thought she had gotten away from when she married Thomas, comes crashing back. She is being accused of being a witch and casting a spell causing another supposed death and temptation from another. Will Thomas fight for her as he had promised in their vows? Will word get to him, and he come to protect her honor? Or will Alyce be hung for her wicked ways, just like her grandmother was decades ago? This was a very good read, as per the title often Alyce got herself in trouble with her own tongue and in those days it was ghastly if women outspoke or seemed to have a mind of their own. It was also very interesting to read about her being accused of a witch and how that all went down and was handled. Thank you to the author, and Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for another great historical read!
I really enjoyed Alyce and Thomas's story! It is not what I normally read, more historical fiction than historical romance, but I did enjoy watching the love between them grow. Besides their relationship, we see Alyce's relationship with family and friends, all whom play a role in what could destroy Alyce and Thomas's happiness. If you are a fan of historical fiction with a touch of romance, then this is the one for you!
The Bridled Tongue by Catherine Meyrick This brilliant historical fiction by Meyrick was set between Aug 1586 through Dec 1589 with an amazing story told within a very accurate historical timeline. Our protagonist is Alyce Bradley who was quite the strong heroine, and an opinionated young woman who at the time was very close to being past her prime for a suitable marriage and family. Her father insisted that she marry as there were accusations about her being a witch. With a large dowry she finds herself matched to a privateer Thomas Granville. I loved seeing the development of their relationship from just a mutual understanding and respect for each other to the development of their love. The story also leads us to a trial accusing Alyce of being a witch from nothing more than gossip, jealousy and misunderstandings as the basis of a life altering accusation. And of all people, this was initiated by her sister Isabel. My heart was torn to pieces to see Alyce be put into such suffering while in prison. I truly enjoyed reading this book. The timeframe in which the story was told was perfect with the inclusion of the subject of witches and the, with hunt during that time and how thousands of women were killed due to frivolous accusations, really made this story a highly engrossing read. This was one of the few books where the story was very easy to follow with very clear writing by the author. The dramatic storyline was incredible including the immersion of the reader within the story. The descriptions were imaginative and vivid as I was drawn to Elizabethan England into the characters' lives. I could imagine this book being made into a movie, and it would be pretty amazing for the love story and the dramatic trial scene. I highly recommend this book for historical fiction fans. Meyrick’s writing was brilliant and I cannot wait to read her other works. This was simply amazing.