February 5, 2015 26 Comments

‘THE VOW’ BOOK BY JODY HEDLUND. Review of the 2015 prequel novella for the Uncertain Choice series. All text © Rissi JC / RissiWrites.com

Known for her beautiful historical novels that explore unique times in history and feature swoon-worthy heroes, author Jody Hedlund is expanding into a new genre. Though keeping with her signature of history, she’s trying her hand at the young adult market and if the novella teaser is anything to go by, I think fans will approve.

‘THE VOW,’ BY JODY HEDLUND #FWarchives Click To Tweet

STORY: 14-year-old Rosemarie is travelling with her family when the Plague arrives, threatening her entire hunting party. The handsome knight she is beginning to care for volunteers to take her to safety at a convent where she stays until she’s sent for. When she is returned to her family home, it’s to news of her father’s death and the deathbed of her mother. The only claimant to her family’s wealth, Rosemarie learns that at the age of eighteen, an ancient edict will fall into place, a secret that will forever alter her future. 

The Vow Book by Jody Hedlund | A Book Review

Though this is very short (I believe it comes in at just under 50 pages), this story is – for lack of a better word, beautiful. Jody manages to set up the world her full-length novel is a part of, giving us background into Rosemarie’s life (for the events that will take place some four years later in An Uncertain Choice) and setting up, what I suspect will be a charming love story. The blend is realism and fantasy. Most of the story reads as if centered in reality, but the “secret” that is going to set up the novel seems to wander into some fantasy elements. This means anyone who enjoys YA with a smidgeon of fantasy will want to add this new series to their TBR.  

I must applaud Jody for her crafting of this series. This The Vow book isn’t anything that I expected yet it was so much better. I liked the ease with which the story reads. A lot of medieval fiction or films can be boring, and this was anything but. Condensed into a few pages is the beginning of an epic, memorable adventure and Rosemarie has the promise to be the heroine the story needs. I’m curious to know how her voice will change from this to the full-length novel and if possible, I’m all the more excited to follow this journey.

About the Book:

Author: Jody Hedlund
Publisher: Zondervan
Source: Purchased
Publication Date: 2015
Find the Review elsewhere: Amazon ǀ Goodreads ǀ WordPress
Find the Book Elsewhere: Goodreads
Series: An Uncertain Choice, 0.5
Genre: Fiction; Young Adult Novella, Historical
Rating: 5 out of 5 

About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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  • Melanie February 5, 2015 at 12:54 PM

    My current read is "Secrets of a Charmed Life" by Susan Meissner. :) It's good so far!

    • Rissi February 6, 2015 at 3:09 PM

      Awesome! I've head good things about Susan's new novel. Happy reading. :)

  • Anonymous February 5, 2015 at 3:12 PM

    I agree the novella wasn't anything I expected, but so good! It was a beautiful read! I plan to have my review on my blog later this month!

    • Rissi February 6, 2015 at 3:08 PM

      Yay! I look forward to your review, Laura – and am happy you were pleasantly surprised. Those are the best reads.

    • Medieval Girl February 10, 2015 at 7:20 PM

      I plan to read 'An Uncertain Choice' probably that this month, and will be reviewing on Netgalley. I think I was lucky to get it, as Zondervan sent me an Invitation via Netgalley, though the Netgalley page said requests from US and Canada were preferred..

      There are so many great Medieval Books coming out this year though…

    • Medieval Girl February 10, 2015 at 7:21 PM

      I meant reviewing on my blog- why did I say reviewing on Netgalley……?

    • Rissi February 11, 2015 at 1:55 AM

      I hope you like it as well! It's really good so far (halfway through) and I'm eager to see how it all ends. I'll have to visit your blog once you write that review. :)

  • Heidi Robbins February 5, 2015 at 5:14 PM

    I love all of her books that I've read so far, so it will be interesting to see how her YA book compares! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the novella!

    • Rissi February 6, 2015 at 3:08 PM

      I think it's going to be epic given the novella, Heidi. Hope you enjoy. :)

  • Rachelle February 6, 2015 at 1:56 PM

    Excellent review, Rissi! I was debating going back and reading the Vow (I'm reading An Uncertain Choice now), but you've convinced me!

    I just love that Jody is trying out this new genre–combining two of my favorites! Historical and YA!

    • Rissi February 6, 2015 at 3:06 PM

      Hi, Rachelle! Thank you! I thought this novella was lovely. :) I hope you do read it at some point. It's a really nice introduction to the story. Now I just need to read An Uncertain Choice too. :)

      As do I. It's awesome that authors are branching out to YA. :)

  • Ella February 6, 2015 at 4:38 PM

    This books sounds very cool!
    Thanks for reviewing it:)
    I enjoyed Jody Hudland's book 'Rebellious Heart' and I have been wanting to give her other books a try.

    • Rissi February 6, 2015 at 9:54 PM

      It is very cool, Ella! I hope if/when you read it, you like it. It's nice to see author's merging into the YA market. :)

      There is a Kindle giveaway going on for this one if you're interested. :)

  • Beth February 7, 2015 at 2:38 AM

    I'm not sure if my comment saved!

    I'm so glad to hear that you loved this one – sometimes short stories can be leaving you wanting more, but it sounds like this one does exactly what is needed – get you excited for the full book!


    • Rissi February 7, 2015 at 3:45 AM

      Hi, Beth! Your comment did save. I'm glad you commented. :)

      I am too. For some reason I was skeptical about this novella (why, I don't know apart from the setting), but am glad it turned out nicely. Hoping the full-length novel is equally lovey. :)

  • Abbi Hart February 9, 2015 at 12:39 AM

    So excited to read this! Jody's books are always amazing! Thanks for the beautiful review!

    • Rissi February 10, 2015 at 12:30 AM

      They are indeed – and The Vow is awesome, Abbi! Enjoy – and THANK YOU for reading. :)

  • Bekah M. February 11, 2015 at 7:25 PM

    While I don't really like novellas and skip prequels, your review + that amazingly gorgeous cover may have me thinking twice about trying this one out. Haha! Plus I just love the medieval time period, especially when done right and not boring, like you said. Thanks for the great review, Rissi–this made me all the more excited about Jody's upcoming book!

    • Rissi February 12, 2015 at 2:24 AM

      I'm not usually a novella kind of reader either, but it's very popular now to write "fill in" stories for series. This one is really nice and sets up the story to come quite well. I'm enjoying An Uncertain Choice very much and while it wouldn't be necessary to have read this first, it offers insight into Rosemarie's past.

      Hope you enjoy if/when you read it, Bekah! Jody is certainly starting things off very well. :)

  • Jillian February 11, 2015 at 8:36 PM

    Excellent review, Rissi! I'm so looking forward to reading Jody's new YA books. I feel like there are hardly any YA historical novels right now, but hopefully Jody's decision to branch out will encourage other authors to write in the genre as well. Thanks for sharing!

    • Rissi February 12, 2015 at 2:27 AM

      I agree, Jillian! I'm loving inspirational authors jumping into this YA trend. Krista McGee wrote an entertaining dystopian series; Lisa T. Bergren has some great books for the YA market and Mary Weber debuted her series last year. Now with Jody's novels, I'm hoping more and more authors are published or give the genre a try. We seem to be weak in this genre – the Christian/inspirational market, that is.

      Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoy this series – I'm loving An Uncertain Choice. :)

  • Gidgets Bookshelf February 13, 2015 at 12:31 PM

    I have An Uncertain Choice for review but haven't started it yet. I might have to get this little novella afterwards. I love finding new YA authors, or new to the field. YA genre is huge right now. I love reading YA and read probably more YA than adult books.


    • Rissi February 13, 2015 at 7:43 PM

      I agree with your opinions about the YA market right now. I'm especially glad inspirational/Christian authors are writing in the genre now. Most of the books I've read are awesome. Hope you enjoy both this and An Uncertain Choice. Both are great. :)

  • […] you. If you’ve not read Jody’s earlier series novel (which also includes the prequel novella, The Vow), then why delay? This just might make be your summer binge-reading all the more memorable. I […]



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