Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for In Two Minds – K.T. Findlay. Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resourcesfor my stop on the tour! Check out my review and let me know what you think.
Hurled twelve hundred years into the past, into someone else’s body, things could hardly be worse. And then the body’s owner wanted it back.
Museum curator Thomas and ten year old Anglo Saxon Wulfstan have to cope with a fifty year age gap, a huge culture clash and never knowing from one moment to the next who’s going to be in control.
As they’re trying to come to terms with it all, they inadvertently antagonise Wulfstan’s father, King Offa of Mercia. The King is already frustrated with his son’s “late” development and issues the boy a challenge. Wulfstan is given just a year to find and train ten slaves who can beat the King’s own champions in a fight to the death, but there’s a twist. When his son accepts the challenge, Offa turns the screws to make him back down and limits him to females only. In the brute strength world of Anglo Saxon battle they surely haven’t a chance, but Thomas convinces Wulfstan that if they can find the right women, a few new ideas and lots of training might just give them the edge they need.
In Two Minds is about how two completely different people, thrown together in the tightest possible way, can learn not just to cope, but to excel by using each other’s strengths. It’s also about kicking down doors and giving people a chance. Once they’re free, it’s the women themselves who are the heroes, seizing their opportunities and climbing to the top. But can they make it?
In Two Minds is a real gem of a novel. I absolutely love time travel and alternative history. K.T. Findlay proves his ability as an author with this. It’s exciting, compelling, and everything I hoped and more.
I felt transported into this novel and I could not put it down. I read it from beginning to end in one sitting because I just had to know what was going to happen.
This is my kind of novel and probably one of my favorites I have read this year. Highly, highly recommended!
*I received a free copy of this book from Rachel’s Random Resources in exchange for an honest review on the blog tour. All opinions are my own and unbiased.*
I’ve always been fascinated by the way a single new idea can alter the course of history, and how some ideas stick while others initially sink without trace, only to resurface perhaps hundreds of years later to change the world. The first Prince Wulfstan book, In Two Minds, explores this idea not just by introducing new ideas into a medieval society, but by showing just how difficult it would be to pull that off in practice.
Equally fascinating is the justice system. People expect it to be fair, which is why we allow it to resolve our disputes instead of simply taking revenge ourselves. But watch an individual case play out in court and it can seem more like a high stakes game between lawyers than the pursuit of absolute truth. And if you think it’s a game, do you still accept the result if you lose? Is that still justice? At what point will a perfectly normal, perfectly decent person snap, and what happens when they do? Is it possible to plunge into the darkness of revenge and remain the normal, decent, happy person you were before you started? That was the inspiration behind Sally Mellors, who’s going to give it an extremely good try in A Thoughtful Woman.
I love the moment when an idea jumps out at me. The trick then is to catch it, because I could be dreaming in bed, walking the hills, trying not to kill myself on the quad bike… anywhere in fact, except in front of the computer. Obviously. Slowly the whole thing coalesces and I begin to write it down, fleshing out the gaps, understanding why these people do what they do. I’m the first person in the world to “hear” their story, and I get to write it. That’s exciting! It’s what Terry Pratchett called “The Valley Filled With Clouds” technique and its huge fun.
A lot of research goes into making my fictional worlds as real as possible. It could be learning about the first mountain bikes, or exactly how medieval clothes were made and worn, or the limitations of police radios, or how to blow glass, draw wire, or a thousand other things. I learn new stuff every single day, and that’s fun too.
So if they’re that much fun to write, it seems only fair that the books should be enjoyable to read. Even in their darkest moments, I like my books to have an underlying vein of humour that will make you smile or laugh. There’s nothing wrong with dark, gritty tales, redolent with unrelenting misery. They’re just not what I want to write. I want you to finish my books and return to the world with a spring in your step.
I live on a small farm where I fit in my writing alongside fighting the blackberry, and trying to convince the quadbike that killing its rider isn’t a core part of its job description.
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Let me know what you think in the comments. I’d love to interact with you. If this sounds like something you would read, let me know!