YA Fantasy/Fairytale Romance: Beholden


About the Book

Title:  Beholden 

Series: The Fairest Maidens, Book 1 

Author: Jody Hedlund 

Genre: YA Fantasy/Fairytale Romance 

Publisher: Northern Lights Press 

Release Date: September 22, 2020 

Click here to purchase a copy of this novel. 


Publisher's Book Description

"In a land where being the fairest maiden is a curse . . . 


A beautiful noblewoman with a terrible secret, and a prince subjected to slavery. 


Upon the death of her wealthy father, Lady Gabriella is condemned to work in Warwick’s gem mine. As she struggles to survive the dangerous conditions, her kindness and beauty shine as brightly as the jewels the slaves excavate. While laboring, Gabriella plots how to avenge her father’s death and stop Queen Margery’s cruelty. 


Prince Vilmar of Scania enslaves himself in Warwick’s gem mine as part of a royal test to prove himself the most worthy of three brothers to become the king’s successor. Amidst the hardships, he doesn’t anticipate his growing compassion for the other slaves, especially tenderhearted Gabriella. 


As the annual summer ball looms nearer, Gabriella sets into motion her plan to end Queen Margery’s evil. When Vilmar learns of Gabriella’s intentions, he resolves to come to her aid and fight against Warwick’s queen. But doing so may require him to give up his chance of becoming Scania’s next king, perhaps even cost him his life. 


The real Cinderella story."

My Review

Beholden, by Jody Hedlund, is the first book in The Fairest Maidens series. This young adult novel is a riveting medieval, fairytale, fantasy adventure enriched with a sprinkling of classic Cinderella elements. Abounding with captivating moments of danger, intrigue, courage, faith, and romance, this novel is utterly entertaining. 


Genuinely talented at crafting stories that are richly detailed and descriptive, Ms. Hedlund has penned an imaginative book that thrills and inspires from beginning to end. Beautifully written in the first person perspectives of the two main characters, this novel is very compelling. Interesting, complex characters who are sincere, honorable, and steadfast ensure that this book is relevant and truly irresistible. Throughout the novel, contrasting elements of peril and bravery, mystery and discovery, love and loss, and greed and self-sacrifice, enhance the plot of this story making it thoroughly moving and satisfying. Themes of kindness, selflessness, and destiny add purpose to this tale making it significant and edifying.  


Beholden is certainly a young adult novel that can easily be appreciated by both teens and adults. Exciting and memorable, this novel is worthwhile, clean, and absolutely enjoyable. I eagerly recommend it to all readers. 


*I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher. A review was not required. The review I have written is voluntary and contains opinions that are entirely my own.


About the Author: Jody Hedlund

"Jody Hedlund is the author of over thirty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award.

Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats. Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she's learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).

When she's not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate." --Biography from Jody Hedlund's author page on Amazon.com.


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