When the Earl of York demands that Thomas join him in battle against the invading Scots, Thomas must prove himself to the other men who look down upon his youth. Yet even more puzzling are the omens that follow the armies into battle—and the fearful whispers about Druids. Thomas' attempts to learn more about the Druids—and about whose side the Earl of York is on—only leave him with more questions than answers. Especially when the one person he thought he could trust returns without answers for him.
Like any Brouwer novel, this one kept me turning pages, wanting answers as desperately as Thomas. Yet I found myself as frustrated by Thomas was by the lack of answers. He's caught between two opposing sides, each refusing to give him any information because they fear that he's already joined the other side. So many times, like Thomas, I just wanted a straightforward answer to the question, instead of more questions. Yet those answers never come, and I wonder how either side expects Thomas to be able to make a choice when they tell him nothing about the battle they fight.
Fortress of Mist is set in medieval England (AD 1300) and I loved the historical details Brouwer includes in Thomas' story. The Middle Ages are one of my favourite periods of history and Brouwer brings them alive with the pen of a skillful writer. Brouwer makes reference to the fact that these were called the Dark Ages because so few people were educated; Thomas' stands above his peers in part because of his ability to read and write Latin and French as well as English.
If you are looking for a fast, entertaining read, I recommend Merlin's Immortals. I do suggest reading it as a series—each book builds heavily upon the book before it. And, of course, I can't wait to read the next book in the series to find out what happens to Thomas next.
I received this book for review courtesy of the publisher; all opinions expressed are my own.