Richard Fitz-Eustace's return from Palestine is far from joyous. Damned by leprosy, he must bid his family a final and sorrowful farewell and leave his estates at Halton Castle forever. Condemned to shun the company of others, he must now find a place of solitude where he can seek forgiveness for sins committed in the Holy Land for which he is certain he has earned God’s curse. Resolved to live out his life as a hermit, he journeys north into the newly named county of Lancashire. But this is no arbitrary journey; there is one last obligation to be undertaken for his grandmother—he must seek out her kinsman, Sir Robert de Lacy, at Cliderhou Castle and there press his consideration of her claim to his estate. While at Halton, Richard’s headstrong 14-year-old sister Johanna is distraught. Her other brother, ruthless and ambitious Roger, has returned to take his place as head of the family. He and Johanna’s mother have contrived a marriage for her to a wealthy old landowner, and without Richard’s protection there seems little she can do about it—unless of course she can escape and find him.
(Terra's Thoughts) This is such a precious story that it will touch your soul. With a very strong God influence showing devotion and what prayer and strong faith can do to give you great hope.
Richard FitzEustace was in the Holy Land fighting with his King for a just cause. A little indiscretion with a woman whom should be considered in all respects as a party of the enemy leaves Richard a leper and the King sends him home to suffer with his affliction.
Richard for all cause is considered dead by the church and is to be shunned by all. Only God will be his companion now and a strong sense of faith, devotion, and consistent prayer can absolve his sins before he is called to his maker.
Richard's grandmother asks a boon of her grandson for she is not afraid of what he has and he sets off to the de Lacy lands in search of a one last wish that he will be able to try and fulfill before his end. He finds upon the de Lacy lands people of more courage and kindness that he could ever hope for. A place to live and devote himself to the Glory of God allows him to do what he can to fulfill his grandmother's wish bringing along a string of events that will hopefully lead to his absolution of sins and God's forgiveness.
This was a tender story but strong of faith, devotion and love. A sense of what is right and what could be consider evil plays strongly. A story that is set in a time when loyalty and honor is key to living the ultimate life would make you hope that forgiveness would be granted in the end.
This is a story for most ages as it is clean of sex and descriptions of the harsh realities of war. Even the description of leprosy is not described in length. The main emphasis is on family, honor, devotion and a strong belief in the good of God in all His brilliance.
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Myrmidon Books; Reprint edition (July 14, 2010)