Cate of the Lost Colony
Bloomsbury USA Children's Books
October 12, 2010
Buy @ Amazon
Orphaned after her father dies in war, Lady Catherine Archer is left in the care of her aunt and uncle--who don't exactly want her. Almost immediately called away as a maid for Queen Elizabeth I, though and that's where Cate of the Lost Colony really begins.
One of the girls responsible for the daily care of the queen--from fetching her clothing to washing and starching her ruffs (those huge white collars they used to wear) to accompanying the queen on her excursions--Catherine, only fourteen, has to learn the ins and outs of palace life and protocol.
No matter the rules, however, she finds it hard to keep all of her thoughts to herself especially where a certain paramour of the Queen's, Sir Walter Ralegh is concerned. Even knowing it will undoubtedly lead to trouble, Catherine can't seem to complete ignore Sir Walter, even under the ever watchful eye of the Queen and her other, not always friendly, maids.
Things do eventually lead to the Lost Colony of Roanoke (but that's much later on and I'm all for the anti-spoiler synopses, keep reading for more about this).
The summaries provided on different book-ish/buying websites and on the back of the book itself, (even the title actually) give more of the plot away, but much of that doesn't happen until Part II and Part III. Part I is a lot about building who Catherine is and her relationships with different characters while working as one of the Queen's maids.
I really enjoyed that so much time was spent developing all of the characters and their relationships before Roanoke was even introduced, it really helped me care more about them once they were in Virginia. It was a historical book but one as much if not more about a character than the events.
There's an index in the front of the book to let you know which characters are real/historical and which are fictional (Cate is fictional) and the author's note in the back does a great job summing up the history--what's real, what's not so much, and where you can go to get more.
Cate of the Lost Colony blends just enough romance, history, and adventure to be a really good read. I'm looking forward to reading some of Lisa Klein's other books now.
If you're someone who's read her other books (Ophelia, Lady Macbeth's Daughter, Two Girls of Gettysbury) or just think this one sounds intriguing, I have a copy to giveaway (thanks to Bloomsbury's Fall Blog Tours).
Enter by filling out the form below (or click here) to open it in a new window :) Ends October 23 at 11:59 pm Eastern. Extra points are all laid out in the form.
This is my last (hopefully just for now!!) of the Bloomsbury Tours, I hope you've had fun with the reviews, giveaways & the interview!! My giveaway for Low Red Moon is still open through Wednesday.
Tuesday I also have an interview/contest coming with Sophie Littlefield. (My WOW post about her book Banished, out Tuesday and here's the Amazon page for it.)