**spoiler alert** Jane de Weston is sick of life as a woman. She wants nothing more than to have the freedom that men have. Never been very womanly sh**spoiler alert** Jane de Weston is sick of life as a woman. She wants nothing more than to have the freedom that men have. Never been very womanly she always felt as it would have been better had she been born a man. During the birth of her sister's child Jane keeps making mistakes, panics, and flees the manor. Disguised as a boy she intends to go to Cambridge and study to become a clerk in the kings court. On the way to there she runs into a "northerner" man. The man falls for her disguise as "John" and offers her a ride to Cambridge. Little does Jane suspect that this man is about to play a large part in her future.
Duncan (Can't remember his last name being spoke) has finally earned his "Masters" and can now teach at Cambridge. His intent is to teach and earn enough money so he can go abroad to finish his training as a physician. There is only a few problems. One his father has recently been kidnapped and is being ransomed by the Scots. Two he has to find a way to convince parliament and the king to sent tropes and ransom money to the northern land where he lives. Three his unmanly urges towards Little John. Something is just not right with that boy. One way or another every single one of these problems has to be fixed. Especially the last one.
I found that i really liked this book. It's one of those books i wish i could give half stars because it's a 4 1/2 for me. The story really deals with the set "roles" that men and woman were supposed to occupy during the late 14th century. Jane wishes to become a scholar, but can't because she's a woman. The world expects her merely to marry, have children, and serve her household. Jane doesn't want this and for that hates being a woman. During the course of the story we see how women are treated and how men see them. While out as "John" one of Duncan's friends tries to force a girl into having sex with him justifying it as "she'll like it and he knows she wants it". The men argue that woman are nothing but lusty creatures who have no morals or knowledge and need men to give it to them. These things really set Jane off. Duncan stops his friends from harming the girl and the girl later becomes Jane's confidant. Jane just doesn't let the topic drop though. She makes herself heard that woman aren't like that. That it's not right to treat them that way. Unfortunately she falls on death ears due to the attitude at the time and is merely considered the "exception" when she is found out. This does not stop Jane from finding her own "woman" inside of her. As she spends time with Duncan she finds she wishes to be seen as a woman to him. She just wishes it to be on equal terms. That is something Duncan grants later calling her "a woman and a half". The story concludes with Duncan's left hand getting badly broken and unable to work normally again. This leads to Jane becoming Duncan's "left hand" and thus shows them finally as equals. They marry, have twins, and make plans to leave for Paris so Duncan can finish up his studies as a physician.
Rating: 4 1/2 stars. Great characters, great use of historical ideas of men and woman roles, and nicely done romance. My only complaint is that the plot felt week at times. ...more