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reviews for The Year We Lived

Readers' Favourite Review

The Year We Lived is a historical fiction novel written by Virginia Crow, set eight years after the Battle of Hastings. Edith spends her days taking care of her sister-in-law Matilda on behalf of her brother, Robert. However, when Matilda dies during childbirth, Edith finds herself more alone than ever. While collecting reeds, she makes friends with a mysterious changeling named Dustan. But a stroll through the forest with him proves costly as she is unceremoniously kidnapped by Henry de Bois, a Norman lord with a vendetta against Robert and the Saxons. After ravaging her body and soul, Henry forcefully marries Edith against her will, making her life a living hell. While Robert swears vengeance, Edith finds unexpected support in the de Bois household as she vows to protect her unborn child.

Author Virginia Crow tells a captivating tale filled with romance, heartbreak, political intrigue, and plenty of action. It is easy to immerse yourself in the story as the revelation of secrets and mysteries keep piling up, and you find yourself turning the pages in eager anticipation of what's to come. The characters are well-developed and easy to relate to. I found Edith's evolution from a naive and innocent girl to a world-weary woman who isn't afraid to sacrifice herself for her loved ones a compelling character arc. I also enjoyed the portrayal of Henry de Bois as an unpredictable fool. The narrative is well-paced, and you never see the twists and turns coming. If you're a fan of historical fiction, I highly recommend The Year We Lived.


The ending of this book is so incredible, I couldn’t actually believe the turn that the story took. If there was ever a prize for best plot twist, I think I would give it to this book! I loved reading it and am going to go on the search for more books by this author!

I need to explain something. There is a massive plot twist at the end of this book. I mean, MASSIVE. The kind of plot twist that has been hinted at throughout the entire book and then is revealed at the end, making you go ‘ohhhhh’.

This drew me in from the beginning. I started this book last night and have just finished it with goosebumps all over my body . Wow I didn't see that coming, what a fantastic twist.

I couldn't put it down! The characters were so well written that I couldn't stop thinking about what was going to happen to them, I even dreamed about them!

it’s a compelling story of hatred, greed, superiority, cleverness, love, gentleness, and fear all gripped into one.

the last chapter had me laughing with delight at how cleverly it was all woven together.

This has to be the cleverest book I have ever read. It has complex characters and an engaging story line. The final chapters are simply outstanding and pull everything together.

The twist was written so wonderfully that I can’t believe how perfectly everything ties up together.

There is a huge plot twist at the end of this novel, one that makes you sit back in awe as you realise how perfectly the story has been written. It was as if each individual piece of the story were a piece of a puzzle and from each individual piece, it is impossible to tell what it is showing you. However, when presented with the picture as a whole, each piece became so incredibly obvious, everything slotting into place so perfectly that it is difficult to comprehend how much work has gone into weaving each piece of the story together. Each piece fit together so intricately that, upon reflection, it seems obvious, yet when reading, I was blissfully unaware of how all these characters, seemingly so very different, would come together and paint that picture.

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