I absolutely love historical fiction and read a lot of it; I love to learn history this way. I also enjoy reading science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller and non-fiction science.
Lady Ilona Szilágy is cousin to King Matthias of Hungary in 1464. King Matthias keeps Vlad Dracula as a political prisoner. Ilona's sister Margit believes that she is soon to be betrothed to Vlad. After meeting the mysterious man shrouded in stories of horror and several strange prophesies Ilona believes herself to be a better match for Vlad. Through much political maneuvering, Vlad and Ilona are married. Their personalities are compatible, however, there is much about Vlad that Ilona has to discover. Vlad is also still a prisoner of Matthias and very eager to fight for his rightful rule over the kingdom of Wallachia.
Historical, sensual, intriguing and magical, The Impaler's Wife brings the story of Vlad the Impaler to life. From the very beginning, the poetic text brimming with mystery intrigued me. With alternating points of view between Ilona and Vlad, Vlad's upbringing and childhood sacrifices lay context for the horrors he committed as an adult. It seemed that he was truly trying to do the best he could for his people while enacting revenge on those who had wronged him. Ilona was equally as fascinating. I felt a strong bond to her from the start. Her wit, intelligence and understanding of how to make to most of her role was entrancing. The relationship between Vlad and Ilona was deep, physical and alluring. Many spicy scenes accentuated the political intrigue. While historically based, there was a thread of magic and mythology woven through with the book of the Solomonari and mentions of the strigoi creating possibility of the supernatural. From beginning to end, The Impaler's Wife kept me on the edge of my seat and kept me turning pages with a perfect mix of history, romance and mystery.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.