Rosemary for Remembrance & Rue for Repentance
A reprint of the first two titles in the popular Janna Mysteries, this “bindup” edition of Rosemary for Remembrance and Rue for Repentance sets the pace for this medieval crime series for teens, currently four in number and counting. Set in 12th- century England during the civil war between King Stephen and Empress Matilda, the novels follow Janna’s quest to uncover the secret of her birth and investigate her mother’s mysterious death.
A Children’s Book Council of Australia Notable Book for 2006, Rosemary for Remembrance establishes Janna as a young woman forced to flee her home when her mother dies and their dwelling is burned to the ground. A perfect example of the quintessential heroine—spunky and strong-willed—Janna must survive alone in the harsh world of 1140s England.
While novice readers may find these stories appealing, those who are more experienced will likely prefer something fresh and new. Janna’s mother was an herbalist and healer, so the villagers suspect both women of sorcery. Naturally, someone kills Janna’s beloved black cat—and in a particularly gruesome manner. Janna’s first suitor is the plain yet noble serf Godric (who in the opening pages of Rosemary for Remembrance saves her from a wild boar). Will Janna choose him—or the dashing stranger, nobleman Hugh fitz Ranulph, who rides a handsome black horse, has a scar down one cheek, and secrets of his own? Rue for Repentance continues Janna’s story, with Janna taking refuge at a manor farm—disguised as a boy. The book includes an enlightening glossary and author’s note, describing the history of the times. Ages 13+.