The Lady and the Minstrel

The Lady and the Minstrel

by Joyce DiPastena

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In King John's England, Robert Marcel chafes against the law that holds him bound as a villein on his lord's manor. He tries to make a daring escape and is nearly caught by his cruel master, but a young girl helps him slip away. 

Years pass and Robert takes up trade as a minstrel. Invited to play at a banquet for the notorious Earl of Saxton, he is stunned to come face to face with the girl he's never forgotten—now Lady Marguerite of Winbourne, betrothed to the earl. Her status as a noblewoman puts her completely out of Robert's reach, but he knows they are meant to be together. He vows to make her his wife no matter what the cost. 

Lady Marguerite has often thought of the young man she helped escape. Her tender feelings for him quickly turn into much more when they are brought back into each other's lives. She longs to be free to marry Robert, the man she loves, but that will require her to sacrifice all she holds dear. 

They are tested at every turn by those bent on driving them apart and destroying what they have found together. Can their love truly conquer all?

The Lady and the Minstrel is a PG-13 rated romantic historical novel

Although this is a stand-alone title, some characters from my other novels make an appearance in this story. It is not necessary to read the titles in order to understand and enjoy The Lady and the Minstrel, but if you are interested in the chronological order it is as follows:

Loyalty's Web (Poitevin Hearts, Book 1)

Illuminations of the Heart (Poitevin Hearts, Book 2)

Loving Lucianna (Hearts in Autumn)

Dangerous Favor (Poitevin Hearts, Book 3)

The Lady and the Minstrel

Product Details

BN ID: 2940152689631
Publisher: Sable Tyger Books
Publication date: 01/29/2015
Sold by: Draft2Digital
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 395,614
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Joyce DiPastena dreamed of green medieval forests while growing up in the dusty copper mining town of Kearny, Arizona. She filled her medieval hunger by reading the books of Thomas B. Costain (where she fell in love with King Henry II of England), and later by attending the University of Arizona where she graduated with a degree in history, specializing in the Middle Ages. The university was also where she completed her first full-length novel…set, of course, in medieval England. Later, her fascination with Henry II led her to expand her research horizons to the far reaches of his “Angevin Empire” in France, which became the setting of her first published novel, "Loyalty’s Web" (a 2007 Whitney Award Finalist). When she’s not writing, Joyce loves to read, play the piano, and spend time with her sister and friends. A highlight of her year is attending the annual Arizona Renaissance Festival . Joyce is a multi-published, multi-award winning author who specializes in sweet medieval romances heavily spiced with mystery and adventure. She lives with her two cats, Clio and Glinka Rimsky-Korsokov, in Mesa, Arizona.

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The Lady and the Minstrel 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
CamiChecketts More than 1 year ago
I've long been a fan of Joyce DiPastena's books, but this one is a personal favorite. I became so invested in Marguerite and Robert's story I found myself reading when I should've been working on my own writing or playing with my boys. This is such a touching and romantic story and I love that it also had a lot of action in it. I would highly recommend Lady and the Minstrel.
Tina_Scott More than 1 year ago
Author Joyce DiPastena has done it again! The Lady and the Minstrel, set in medieval England, happily reminds me of the Robin Hood stories, and tales of King Arthur with his knights of the round table that I enjoyed as a child. Although the tale is fiction, DiPastena has researched the time period well and is able to augment and enrich the story with even the tiniest little facts that make them come alive (as she does with all of her stories). Readers of romance will sigh at the sweetness of budding love. Those more adventurous at heart will find themselves biting their nails and quickly turning the page to see what happens next. DiPastena’s characters are spot on with real-life drama that, despite the gap in generations, is easily relatable. Family expectations and loyalties, society’s expectations, the consequences of war, insecurity, self-doubt, and the desire to be heard all come to play in The Lady and the Minstrel.  Robert Marcel, born a lowly villein, feels he has as much right to freedom as any nobleman. After the death of his parents, and suffering through years of an abusive master, he takes his mother’s lute, a treasured heirloom, and runs away determined to live his life as a travelling minstrel.  Before he is able to make a complete escape, he comes to a crossroads of sorts in the form of a river. If he crosses it, the water will ruin his mother’s lute. If he stays on the same side of river as the hounds, his master will catch him and offer a punishment he may not survive. As he debates what to do, his savior comes in the form of a ten-year-old girl who holds the precious cargo for him as he crosses the river.  The story begins years later when Robert and Lady Marguerite of Windbourne meet again just prior to her betrothal dinner to the Earl of Saxton, a man who promises to be even more abusive than her father.  Robert and Lady Marguerite fall in love despite all odds against them, and even while her father and the earl conspire for the earl to marry Marguerite without her approval. No one dares go against the wishes of the powerful Earl of Saxton. Not even the priest.  It’s now Robert’s turn to rescue her. But can Robert rescue a Lady without giving up the freedom he’s fought so long to maintain? Will the two of them be able to overcome strict societal laws, set by the king himself, in order to marry? The answer is expertly crafted within the pages of The Lady and the Minstrel.
Lisa_Annesley More than 1 year ago
Joyce DiPastena takes you back 800 years to medieval England and France in THE LADY AND THE MINSTREL. You can smell the scented rushes on the floor and feel the rough tunics and fur-lined gloves. Robert Marcel is a minstrel who falls in love with Lady Marguerite when she rescues a village child in the snow. Marguerite returns his love, even though she becomes betrothed against her will to the abusive Lord Saxton. Robert and Marguerite want to marry in spite of the betrothal (or because of it), but all Robert can offer her is life as a minstrels' wife. What follows is mystery, conspiracy, and intrigue as Robert seeks some personal answers when he goes to war in France. Will his experiences allow Marguerite and him to have a happy ending, or will he die as a traitor? I couldn't put this book down. If you love sweet, historical romances, you'll love this one. And you'll learn about life and politics in the early 13th century along the way! Highly recommended.
Redrabbitt More than 1 year ago
This is a beautifully written story that takes you back to Medieval time when people were treated based upon their class of birth and not as individuals.  It is a story of determination, love and acceptance.  A story where love does not follow social protocol.  Robert "Rob" Marcel is born to parents that are villein or an unfree peasant on the higher social end.  His parents want more for him in life and he trains under a clergy man. He is able to read and write. I don't want to tell the story, so I will say that Rob also has been trained by his mother to play the lute and he becomes a traveling minstrel, going from town to town, playing in castles or wherever he can to survive.  But he has never settled down. Marguerite Valette, born a Lady, whose parents are of wealth and standing in the Kingdom.  She is betrothed to Symeon Achard, Earl of Styres.   Marguerite does not want to marry Styres, a man so bold as to bring his mistress and flaunt her in front of everyone.  Even though Marguerite is a Lady, under the law, she is still considered property of her father and her betrothed husband.  She must bow to their wishes.  But Marguerite is a rebel and from her time under the care of her maternal Grandfather and tutored under Odo, she has spunk and is not one to be meek and follow the rules.