Monday, January 14, 2013

Blog Tour Review: A Thing Done by Tinney Sue Heath

From the Back Cover:

In 1216 the noble families of Florence hold great power, but they do not share it easily.

Tensions simmer just below the surface. When a Jester's prank-for-hire sets off a brawl, those tensions erupt violently, dividing Florence into hostile factions. A marriage is brokered to make peace, but that fragile alliance crumbles under the pressure of a woman's interference, a scorned bride, and an outraged cry for revenge.

At the center of the conflict is Corrado, the Jester, whose prank began it and who is now pressed into unwilling service by both sides. It will take all his wit and ingenuity to keep himself alive, to protect those dear to him, and to prevent the unbridled ambitions of the nobles from destroying the city in a brutal civil war.

My Thoughts:

I'm drawn to stories about the historical dealings of powerful figures from the point of view of the everyday people who had to live through their antics, and who had to live with the consequences of their actions, and I think Corrado's is one of the most interesting points of view I've read. As a poor entertainer in a small troop of acrobats and musicians, in a city rife with violent rivalry, he finds himself in the precarious position of being ordered to perform a prank he knows will start a fight, and then in the position of trying to keep himself alive as he gets caught in the middle of a vendetta, privy to the secrets of two warring families with the power to launch the city into bloodshed and chaos, but helpless to do anything to prevent it from happening.

Corrado, humble player though he be, is actually a very noble character, and I was rooting for him to somehow manage to come out on top as he fought to keep from endangering his friends, and then as he became even more embroiled in the vendetta and had to face the consequences of playing an inadvertent part in harming people he'd come to care about. Ms. Heath has obviously done extensive research and it shows as the medieval city of Florence comes to life, as does the plight of the residents of a city held hostage by powerful warring families--where people have to walk a fine line, careful of offending anyone's allegiances, and where being seen in the wrong place at the wrong time or in possession of the wrong colors can be fatal.

A Thing Done gets thumbs up for a compelling, empathetic main character and a good story that gets pretty intense at its climax, but on the downside I found it to be laborious reading at times. It gets bogged down in a big cast with lots of names and various alliances to keep track of, and the narrative tends toward the wordy and overly descriptive, which really slows the reading down. But it did hold my interest to the end, which was very poignant and satisfying, and I think it will appeal to other fans of everyday heroes and Italian history. And as a debut, I think it proves that Ms. Heath has potential for a successful career in historical fiction.

My Rating:  3.5 Stars out of 5

Enter to win a copy of A Thing Done by leaving a comment with your email address!
This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and ends at 11:59pm, Monday, January 21, 2013. Winner will be selected at random.
Thanks and good luck!

This giveaway is closed and the winner has been selected. Stay tuned for more great giveaways!

A Thing Done is on a blog tour!
Click here to view the tour schedule.
Click here to visit Tinney Sue Heath's website.


  1. This is a great giveaway! Love the cover of that book!


  2. Thanks for this fascinating giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  3. Your review captivated my interest. A unique novel. Thanks. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  4. I'd like to give this one a try. Thanks for the chance to win.

    nanze55 at hotmail dot com

  5. I am really intrigued by this period in Italy's history. Thanks for the giveaway!

    lafra86 at gmail dot com

  6. This sounds really interesting and it's a brand new book to me as well. Thanks for the heads-up and the giveaway. I'd love to win a copy. carlscott(at)prodigy(dot)net(dot)mx

  7. This is really a good plot line. Thanks for the giveaway!

    lag110 at mchsi dot com

  8. Thanks for your comments, Jenny, and thanks for hosting me here. And good luck, all, on the giveaway!


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