At 14, Ariana of Cragmere has lost her father and brothers at the Battle of Hastings. William rewards his most trusted knight, Lord Lyon, with not only Cragmere, but Ariana as well. Married, but not bedded, Ariana is left at a convent where Lyon hopes she will learn obedience and humility.

Five years later he goes to bring his bride home and finds that time has not dulled her sharp tongue. Their marriage is off to a rocky start. The only place they seem to find peace is in bed.

At William's court, jealousy and mistrust abound in the form of Lyon's former mistress. In a fit of anger, Ariana leaves London for the wilds of Scotland to join King Malcolm in his fight to overthrow William. King Malcolm sets aside her marriage to Lyon and decrees she wed his man, Edric. When Lyon arrives to claim his wife he must swear fealty to Malcolm or lose Ariana to Edric.

Lyon gives in to his obsession knowing that it will seem he has betrayed William. Banished to Cragmere, Lyon and Ariana's marriage disintegrates until Lyon is called to William's side and is wounded in battle. Only Ariana's love can save him.

THE LION'S BRIDE is Connie Mason's first Medieval romance and is filled with intrigue, jealousies and mistaken trusts. Ariana is a spunky heroine, and Lyon is a typical proud, taciturn knight whose pride gets in the way. This wondrous tale is a must-read for the medieval fan and Ms. Mason's legion of readers. SENSUAL (Dec., 400 pp., $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Jill Brager