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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Henrietta, The Diplomat's Daughter is an epic fantasy novella written by Ronnda Eileen Henry. King Lambert of Penruddock had entered into negotiations with the Kingdom of Galicia with a view to improving trade relations with that nation, which was known for its fine woven silks. They had agreed that King Minoru’s niece would marry young Prince August to formalize the new relations between the two kingdoms. The Prince would be travelling to Galicia with his retinue as well as Lord Henry, the Duke of Talabriga, and his daughter, Henrietta. The Duke and his daughter were both talented scribes whose knowledge of the Galician language would hold them in good stead as tutors to the young Prince. When they arrived at the court, however, they discovered that Prince August had been injured and that the recently widowed Prince Harold would be marrying the Galician princess in his place. Henrietta, who had turned down a number of marriage proposals in the past, found herself strangely attracted to Harold, but propriety demanded that she exercise strict control over those feelings as she tutored him and helped him get ready for his marriage.
Ronnda Eileen Henry’s epic fantasy novella, Henrietta, The Diplomat's Daughter, is a well-written and enthralling story about a young woman scribe whose progressive upbringing puts her quite at odds with the culture in which she’s been born. I found myself to be enchanted by Henrietta, whose chess skills I envied, and whose second-class status as a woman in Penruddock I despaired of. It was then unsurprising that Henrietta should take no little offense at the way women were treated in Galicia, a culture that made her own culture seem advanced and liberal by comparison. I loved the decidedly dominant role Henrietta plays in solving an inexplicable murder and confronting the peril that has beset the delegation. Henrietta is smart, daring and everything one could wish for in a heroine. Henrietta, The Diplomat's Daughter is most highly recommended.