It’s 1546, and Ivan the Terrible is about to be coronated and married off. Government nobles are given 6 weeks to choose the most beautiful, highborn, fertile, and politically expedient brides from around the country. Before Tsar Ivan makes his choice, 16-year-old Lyuba is forced to go through a series of examinations as a potential bride, but she’s in love with someone else and planning to do everything she can to make herself as unappealing as possible. But anything too obvious could backfire, and her family would pay the price if she was anything but delighted to be a candidate.
C. P. Lesley was born in England and lived in the states from the age of eleven. She earned a PhD in Russian History from Stanford and has always loved telling stories. Author of The Not Exactly Scarlet Pimpernel, The Golden Lynx, The Winged Horse, The Swan Princess, The Vermilion Bird, and The Shattered Drum (Five Directions Press), she is currently working on the sixth book in her Songs of Steppe & Forest series, Song of the Steadfast. The series includes Song of the Siren (2019), Song of the Shaman (2020) Song of the Sisters (2021), Song of the Sinner (2022), and now Song of the Storyteller (2023). Lesley also hosts New Books in Historical Fiction, a podcast channel on the New Books Network. When not thinking up new ways to torture her characters, she edits other people’s manuscripts, reads voraciously, maintains her website, and practices classical ballet.
G. P. Gottlieb is the author of the Whipped and Sipped Mystery Series and a prolific baker of healthful breads and pastries. Please contact her through her website (GPGottlieb.com).