Reviewed by Shoshana F. Regos for Reader Views (11/18)
The premise of “The Jester’s Dance” by Leslie Hachtel was intriguing and the writing overall seemed fair. Lady Margaret has left her home after the sudden death of her husband and has decided to disguise herself as a jester and roam free. She travels to Court with Lord Seth, a Scotsman in desperate need of the king’s help with a neighboring clan that has kidnapped some of his family. Lady Margaret is unexpectedly attracted to Lord Seth and he finds himself gazing at the young court jester. They soon form a bond and Lady Margaret decides to assist Lord Seth in freeing his family from their captors.
I was conflicted about my feelings for this book and took some time to think about “The Jester’s Dance,” before writing a review. Overall, I enjoyed the story, it was an easy and fast read for me. The plot drew me in and I liked the historical fantasy components, with a hint of romance. The detailed description of historical features allowed me to visualize the landscapes that Lady Margaret traveled on. The author’s descriptions of the encounters between Lord Seth and Lady Margaret were very vivid, allowing the reader to feel the deep emotional connection between both characters.
The witchcraft elements, however, kind of threw me for a loop, and it made the story somewhat hard to believe. There was no structure and all of a sudden Lady Margaret has these premonitions and visions of the future. I would have liked more of a backstory about her and her friends’ early experiences with witchcraft. It just seemed intrusive and out of context and scattered throughout the story. The witchcraft for me added little to the story.
I would recommend “The Jester’s Dance” by Leslie Hachtel for those that are interested in an entertaining and quick read. It was an uplifting adventure with a female lead.