The Wild Hunt is the first book of a trilogy set in the Welsh borders at the turn of the twelfth century. William the Conqueror is dead and the throne of England and Normandy is shared between his brothers William Rufus and Robert Curthose. Rufus sits on the throne while Robert has gone off on crusade. At Rufus’s death, their youngest brother Henry (who had no inheritance) grabs the throne and declares himself king (Henry the first) before Robert can make it back to England from the Holy Land and claim his rightful crown.
The protagonist Guyon Fitzmiles is the Lord of Ledworth, a Norman lord on the Welsh border who is a long-time friend of Henry’s. In his twenties he marries a teenage bride of fifteen holding Ravenstow castle for a strategic alliance along the Welsh borders. Guyon has a Welsh mistress and has slept around with loads of women and his new wife Judith is the opposite of the kind of woman he is attracted to. She has strict ideas and is immature, undeveloped as yet and frightened. Political intrigue is rife in this era and our two protagonists are thrown into its midst and have to work as a team in the unstable welsh marches which have regular welsh raids as well as Judith’s avaricious and aggressive uncle nearby. With patience Guyon draws her out of her childhood and into becoming a confident woman and wife that surprises him.
A quirky character is Judith’s cat which sits wrapped around her shoulders. I’ve never seen a cat do that!
The other books in the trilogy are, The Running Vixen and The Leopard Unleashed