About the Book
Book: A Life Redeemed
Author: Olivia Rae
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release date: June 16, 2021
Everyone has a secret, who can a queen trust?
Upon Queen Elizabeth’s order, Audrey Hayes travels to the borderlands of Scotland to learn where the fierce Laird Armstrong’s loyalties lie. Is he aligned with his mother’s English roots in support of the queen, or does he hold with the beliefs of his father, who wishes to see Mary of Scots on the English throne? The fate of Audrey’s family rests on her success in finding the answer.
After losing his lands in a wager and being betrayed by his kin, Gavin Armstrong entered a loveless marriage to obtain the funds to buy back his family home, Warring Tower. Now a widower, struggling against countless border wars, he is on the verge of losing his home and lands again. With few resources, he reluctantly makes another risky wager, one he cannot hope to win without trusting the secretive Audrey Hayes, a woman he suspects is an English spy.
As the two work together to save Warring Tower, their attraction to one another grows. But when Audrey finally gains the information she seeks for Queen Elizabeth, she realizes that the only way she can save her family is to betray the man she loves.
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A Life Redeemed was an interesting read set in a slightly alternate Elizabethan era. I was fascinated to learn about what life was like on the border between England and Scotland, especially with some who were loyalists and others who were Papists. It was also interesting to learn about the early days of the Reformation under John Knox. I’d known there had been a lot of tension during this time period, but I didn’t really understand the extent of it.
I also enjoyed getting to know the characters. Audrey was a dynamic gentlewoman in that she was graceful and kind, but she also was not afraid to stand up for herself and others. I also liked getting to know Gavin, although he was very dislikable at times, especially with his first few interactions with Audrey. I also liked Thomas, Gavin’s son, although I felt like his character did a complete 180 near the end and I didn’t like it. Lady Francis was another favorite, especially her wisdom and forbearance with everyone.
Plot-wise it was good, but there were times that the plot seemed to slow significantly and dragged a little. But I still liked it, and I am looking forward to hopefully picking up the next book, which follows a grown-up Thomas. 3.5/5 Stars
*I received a copy of the book from the author and Celebrate Lit in exchange for my honest review.
About the Author
Olivia Rae is an award-winning author of historical and contemporary inspirational romance. She spent her school days dreaming of knights, princesses and far away kingdoms; it made those long, boring days in the classroom go by much faster. Nobody was more shocked than her when she decided to become a teacher. Besides getting her Master’s degree, marrying her own prince, and raising a couple of kids, Olivia decided to breathe a little more life into her childhood stories by adding in what she’s learned as an adult living in a small town on the edge of a big city. When not writing, she loves to travel, dragging her family to old castles and forts all across the world.
Olivia is the winner of the Angel Award, Book Buyers Best Award, Golden Quill Award, New England Readers’ Choice Award, Southern Magic Contest, and the American Fiction Award. She is an Illumination Award Gold and Bronze medalist. She has also been a finalist in many other contests such as the National Readers’ Choice Awards, and the National Romance Fiction Awards. She is currently hard at work on her next novel.
More from Olivia
My novel, A Life Redeemed takes place in 16th Century England and Scotland. A very popular dish at the time was the meat pie. Back then making such a dish took a lot of time. My Grandmother made a similar dish with modern day ingredients that you can whip together in no time. Cheesy meat pie is a real family pleaser and a delicious bit of history.
Medieval Cheesy Meat Pie
1 pound ground beef
½ cup chopped onion
1 – 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
¼ cup parsley
1 – 3oz. can chopped mushrooms (drained)
1/8 teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
2 packages (8 rolls) crescent rolls
Shredded cheese (mixed cheddar and mozzarella)
In skillet, brown beef, onion (drain). Stir in tomato sauce, parsley, mushrooms, pepper and oregano, then set aside. Unroll one package of crescent rolls, forming 12×6 inch rectangle. Seal edges and perforations together. Roll to fit in 9-inch pie plate, trim. Separate one egg and set aside the yoke. Beat egg white with remaining two eggs. Spread over half the dough. Spoon meat into shell, arranging cheese on top. Pour remaining egg mixture over cheese. Roll out second package of crescent rolls, sealing on top of pie. Beat remaining egg yoke and a tablespoon of water, brush on top of dough. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. If pastry gets too brown, cover with foil. Let stand for 10 minutes.
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To celebrate her tour, Olivia is giving away the grand prize packaged of a $50 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.