The Rose and the Thistle (2023)

About the Book

Book: The Rose and the Thistle

Author: Laura Frantz

Genre: Historical Christian Romance

Release Date: January 3, 2023

In 1715, Lady Blythe Hedley’s father is declared an enemy of the British crown because of his Jacobite sympathies, forcing her to flee her home in northern England. Secreted to the tower of Wedderburn Castle in Scotland, Lady Blythe awaits who will ultimately be crowned king. But in a house with seven sons and numerous servants, her presence soon becomes known.

No sooner has Everard Hume lost his father, Lord Wedderburn, than Lady Hedley arrives with the clothes on her back and her mistress in tow. He has his own problems–a volatile brother with dangerous political leanings, an estate to manage, and a very young brother in need of comfort and direction in the wake of losing his father. It would be best for everyone if he could send this misfit heiress on her way as soon as possible.

Drawn into a whirlwind of intrigue, shifting alliances, and ambitions, Lady Blythe must be careful whom she trusts. Her fortune, her future, and her very life are at stake. Those who appear to be adversaries may turn out to be allies–and those who pretend friendship may be enemies.

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Advance Praise

My Thoughts

One of the reasons I adore Frantz’s novels is because I always learn something new. The Rose and the Thistle is no exception. This beautiful story takes place in 1715 in France, England, and Scotland during an insanely tumultuous time where the British Queen had died an untimely death, a German took the British crown, and a Jacobite king, James Stuart, desperately attempted to take Britain back from the German usurper. All of Britain was torn in two: some were staunch Jacobites and Catholics who desired England be returned to British sensibilities, and some thought it best to follow the new Hanoverian king and his Protestant leanings. As I was reading, Ecclesiastes 1:9 (ESV) kept playing over and over in my mind: “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.” It’s uncanny how right now our time in America is mimicking Europe in 1715. The division, the hatred on both sides, the willingness to do whatever it takes — even hurting others — in order to stay in power. The spying. The shutting down other people simply because they don’t think or believe like you. It’s crazy and so frustrating. I say to my husband all the time, “There really has never been a good time. People are so selfish.” Yes, there are good moments to be had on this earth. GOD blesses us with good. But humans really, really like to hate and hurt and destroy. It’s so sad and so frustrating. And while this fact about humanity is prevalent in The Rose and the Thistle, this story does not fill me with dread. Instead, it fills me with hope. I was reminded while reading this outstanding story that God has His hands on His kids always and that He is the Boss. He is in charge of seasons and times, governments, and all wisdom and understanding (Daniel 2:20-22). This Truth was true in Blythe’s day, and it is still true in my day today. With this reminder, I feel quite comforted indeed!

One way humans could break the historical cycle of dividing, hating, and hurting is by taking a moment in someone else’s shoes. To do this, we humans have to be willing to look at others and see what’s really going on. Blythe does this and then some. I love her character. She is so attuned to the fine details. She pays attention and she is conscientious. Everard may initially be direct and gruff, and it might rub Blythe the wrong way at first, but she doesn’t label him as “enemy” and disregard him, his beliefs, or his feelings. Instead, she pays attention. She figures out WHY he acts and believes and feels the way he does. AND she recognizes her part in why he might feel and act the way he does. Blythe doesn’t “other” Everard. She is respectful. She sees Everard as a unique individual “fearfully and wonderfully made” by God (Psalm 139:14) who contains his own likes and desires and beliefs. Blythe knows that regardless of how she might feel about him in the moment, Everard matters because God made him. I wish more people on earth today were like Blythe. This world would be a much better place if we all took a moment to realize the people surrounding us all matter because they all bear God’s likeness.

The Rose and the Thistle is another home run by Laura Frantz. This story is lovely and not one I will soon forget. I cannot recommend this story enough. If you adore well-crafted and well-researched Historical Romances that give you all the feels, if you love excellent storytelling that also teaches you a few things, and if you appreciate stellar writing then I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Frantz’s novel today. You do NOT want to miss this beautiful Historical Romance.

I received a paperback copy of this novel from the publisher, Revell, in order to read and review. I also received a review copy of this novel in eBook form from the author, Laura Frantz, via NetGalley. And I purchased a copy of this novel in eBook form from on January 2, 2023, in order to review. In no way has any of this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

2 thoughts on “The Rose and the Thistle (2023)

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