International Writers Inspiring Change feature book review: The Chosen Man, by J.G. Harlond

A tale of intrigue, adventure and romance

The Chosen Man, by J.G. Harlond, is the kind of book you immerse yourself into at night, allowing the author to take you back to a little known period in the 1600’s Europe. The story centers on Ludovico, an Italian merchant, a daring man who travels dangerous routes in search of new cargos to sell on the European market, in fact, somewhat reminiscent of Marco Polo. In this story, Ludo has entered the burgeoning tulip trade which has sparked into a wildfire in the Netherlands. He is approached by officials in Spain, who are fighting to regain control of territory under Dutch rule, and to this end, they want him to help break the back of financial stability in the Netherlands by manipulating and sabotaging the tulip trade there – the new backbone of that area. Ludo, while principled in some respects, is in it for the money and he sees an opportunity and so grasps it. It is a deal laced with great suspicion and dangers. In his travels he comes across a young lady, Alina, whom he saves from slavery at the hands of people who would sell her into sexual bondage, and arranges a new and respectable marriage for her – but in his heart, he discovers that he is in love with her. Therein begins the convolutions, twists and turns, the intrigue, the romance and adventures. Most striking about this book, I find, is the historical tidbits it provides, an insight into a time during the 1600s when a simple flower changed a world. Moreover, the style and elegance of writing is noteworthy. This is an author with a wonderful and powerful ability to conjure up a story through words. It’s not a fast-paced  book, but a steady one, that keeps you reading to the end, and it is the first in a trilogy, which makes you want to know what new adventures await Ludovico in the books to come.

About J.G. Harlond

Secret agents, skulduggery, crime and romance that cross continents . . .

J.G. Harlond (Jane) writes page-turning historical crime fiction. Each story is set against a background of real events, combining intrigue, romance, and downright wickedness. Many of her stories examine aspects of power, showing how decisions made in high places can affect the lives of ordinary people. For many years Jane worked in International Education, she then gave up a safe, successful and enjoyable career to become a full-time author. After travelling widely, she is now settled in rural Andalucía, southern Spain.

Visit her website

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