Shay Savage is back with an epic series and I’m there, all the way! I’ve been waiting years to see this little gem published and finally, here it is! As most of Shay’s book if not all of them I’ve read them as fanfiction back in the days and this was by far one of my favorite stories, along with so many others of hers like Transcendence and the Caged series! This is a stunning start to a brilliant historical series.


Title: The Handmaid (Unexpected Circumstances #1)
Author: Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: May 31st 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
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In a bold political move, Sir Branford claims a handmaid as his bride instead of the expected princess in an attempt to spark a war. Poor Alexandra knows little of how to behave as the wife of a future king and knows nothing of the man who is suddenly her husband. Alexandra knows she is being used as a pawn and must do her best to avoid scheming noblewomen and the scorned princess, accept her position as her husband ascends to the throne, and overcome her fears of the man with whom she now shares a bed. Sir Branford is determined to have it all – the kingdom, a wife of his choosing, and the revenge he seeks for the death of his father. He doesn’t expect the naive handmaid to become more important than he ever could have foreseen.

4 stars!

“I will always keep you safe.”

Sir Branford & Alexandra ♥

Everything starts when Sir Brandford in order to get revenge for his parents’ death, he doesn’t claim the King’s daughter as his wife after his win, but takes the maid that happened to be sitting next to her at the tournament, Alexandra.

He smiled and whispered a single word. “Lovely.”

Alexandra is so different from him, naturally, she grew up serving the Princess and she is suddenly thrust into this world completely different from the one she knows, she’s bound to be shaken up and make some serious mistakes, like trust people she’s not supposed to.

The Unexpected Circumstances series will be released back to back so you don’t have to wait long for them and you’ll love it, it is hand down another amazing delivery by Shay Savage and I’m so thrilled for everyone to read this series, prepare to have your world rocked people!


Title: The Seduction (Unexpected Circumstances #2)
Author: 
Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: June 14th 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
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As Alexandra tries to conform to her new life, she soon discovers that betrayal lies inside the castle walls. When noblewomen plot against her, Alexandra ends up on the receiving end of Branford’s rage. Earning the trust of her wary husband will be no easy task for the young handmaid.

Branford may know his way around their bedchamber, but he’s finding himself ill-prepared to handle the duties of both prince and husband. His missteps bring down the wrath of the queen, and he will have to do everything in his power to atone for his transgressions. Branford must find a way to open his heart to his new wife if either of them has a chance of overcoming the treachery ahead.

4 stars!

“You are going to remain my wife and I will remain your husband. No one can change that.”

Sir Branford & Alexandra are back ♥

UC

The Seductions picks up where The Handmaid ended. Alexandra faced a lot of cruelty and her ignorance of anything that has to do with the court life put her in the spotlight in the most embarrassing ways but she quickly learned to deal with people around her and be cautious.

“I do have enemies… and sometimes they know exactly where to strike me.”

The next book will me even steamier than these two and as the story develops, Alexandra grows into her role and she matures and I can’t wait to read it!

I don’t have much to say, these books are way too short but to the point and it’s a good thing that they are being released back to back. Once again Shay Savage is showing her mad writing skills with this and historical romance is a personal favorite so you can imagine my excitement for this!


Title: The Consummation (Unexpected Circumstances #3)
Author: 
Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: June 28th 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
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With steady patience, Sir Branford teaches his young wife the pleasures that are to be found in their marital chambers. Though still unsure of herself, Alexandra begins to open herself to the possibilities of her new life. As Branford expresses his desire to have more than a simple political marriage, Alexandra begins to see a brand new side of her husband.

Alexandra soon discovers there is more to being Sir Branford’s wife that sharing his bed. When the lives of nobles rest in her hands, she finally begins to understand the importance of her position in the court and in her husband’s life.

4 stars!

“You are so different from every woman I have ever known…”

The Consummation picks up where The Seduction ended and this book… well whatever you’ve been waiting for since book 1 goes above and beyond steamy.

Branford and Alexandra finally consummate their marriage, from the reviews I’ve read it’s been a highly anticipated moment but the wait made it sweeter and it paid off.

So far the series has built a solid connection with the characters – Shay Savage’s writing and descriptions are truly outstanding especially with this historical genre – that the wait only made it so worthy in the end. Alexandra is still the shy and maybe over the top innocent girl, which I guess it’s a good thing since girls her age at the time period the book is set are not that lucky, and she is slowly learning what the court is like, what her husband is like and there’s a steady character development I really love reading.

Branford is… Branford. He’s seductive and charming, the series is really setting a court vibe and I can’t wait to see Branford and Alexandra in action – well, not that action, but actual political and court action.


Title: The Shortcoming (Unexpected Circumstances #4)
Author: 
Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: July 12th 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
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As the bond between Alexandra and Branford grows, they each have their hopes for the future. Alexandra finds new friendship with the girl she rescued from a cruel master, and slowly embraces her noble role. It seems as though everything in their lives has become as smooth as silk. But war is on the horizon.

As the war comes to an end, there is only one thing on Branford’s mind. But how will Alexandra overcome her anguish when she can’t give her husband the one thing he must have?

4 stars!

The Shortcoming and The Concubine have cause quite a bit of drama between readers. The Shortcoming brings a lot of new people into the story and war. But that is still not as alarming as what the ending of the book brings. For the short period Alexandra and Brandford have been married, they still are childless; to historical romance, heirs and thrones are always a thing, so understandably that cause a stir and gives rival kingdoms a reason to get involved in the plot. The ending of the book suggests that another woman will be entering the plot. As a concubine. 


Title: The Concubine (Unexpected Circumstances #5)
Author: Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: July 26th 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
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Royalty requires sacrifice.

As King Camden’s health declines, the need for an heir becomes crucial, impossible to ignore. With no other viable choice, Alexandra must stand stoically by when Hadley comes to the court of Silverhelm as Branford’s concubine. The queen’s edict of duty echoes through Alexandra’s mind as she accepts the loathsome conditions for the sake of the kingdom. The only person more devastated by the circumstances is Branford himself.

As Branford spurs Alexandra’s affections, and King Edgar continues press his post-war advantage, all seems lost to the young couple. Treachery still lies deep within the castle of Silverhelm, and the revelation of the traitor will come from the least likely of sources.

4 stars!

Unlike contemporary – in which sex with another person is cheating – historical romance – history itself – has a history of blurring the lines and getting things done (heir) no matter what. I’ve never been a King in my lifetime, but I guess taking my wife and saying screw it I’m not doing my duty – which I’ve been groomed for my entire life – and living this place, you people are mean and you suck, I’m in love with my wife and the kingdom can go fuck itself. Said no King. Ever.

What I don’t understand though is the double standard. The Handmaid made it clear that Princess Whitney was supposed to be the one that Brandford should have chosen; instead, he bypassed her and basically ridiculed her in front of her court. But literally not one reader gave a crap about her. No one said, you know what, there’s something going on between those two and he treats her like crap, shame on him. But when it comes to the lead character, everyone looses their mind.

You either want your historical books to be historically accurate, or you don’t. You either want your male lead character to be noble or you don’t. You can’t choose moments and reject others. Books have moments we love and moments we hate, those can be back to back, or in different parts of the book, we hate some parts because we are emotionally invested in the story and it personally hurts us; but it hurts because we love it. Can you truly hate a book you’ve loved so far because you hate a part of it?

That rant being said, I understand that The Concubine may not be everyone’s cup of tea and cheating is a no-no for a lot of readers but also it would help to keep in mind the setting of the story. This isn’t set in 2016, it’s the medieval times where Kings would take mistresses from their Queen’s court no less – anyone who didn’t love watching The Tudors? Because he was all over that court. Having a character like Branford so torn and so broken up about it but also Alexandra in this huge character arc should be noted. Kings and Queens are not ordinary book characters that can afford to break the rules and go out of the norm – for them – just so the plot can be pleasant. 

Overall, I love Shay Savage’s books and I look forward to the next one, that will be a stunning book!


Title: The Apprehension (Unexpected Circumstances #6)
Author: 
Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: August 9th 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
AMAZON US | AMAZON UK
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With two traitors removed from their midst, Branford and Alexandra rekindle their faith in one another. Branford insists on remaining at Alexandra’s side at all times to protect her as he rallies his allies against King Edgar and the kingdom of Hadebrand.

Alexandra’s grace and humility continue to touch the hearts of the people of Silverhelm, and the couple is surrounded by the love of their people. But treachery still lives in the hearts of those who wish to see the destruction of Silverhelm and they would be willing to cause Alexandra harm to achieve their goal. King Edgar still will not relent, but will his role in past events be exposed? Branford is not invincible, and despite his vows to keep his wife safe, Alexandra is still vulnerable. When the unthinkable happens, Branford may not be able to survive the loss.

4 stars!

Sweet book feels! The sixth book in the series made me cry like a baby. One more book to go and what a cliffhanger this one was.

The last book ended with a few revelations that explained a lot that has happened so far in the series and what I loved about this was once again Alexandra’s character development. It has been a steady development from the Handmaid that got picked in the tournament to the Queen that is dealing with traitors and her future.

The sixth book brings even more drama and raises the reader’s expectations for the final book. I won’t spoil but I felt for Alexandra; she is naturally a person that only sees good in others and yet she has been betrayed over and over again and this one was over something so mundane it made me really feel for her.


Title: The Devastation (Unexpected Circumstances #7)
Author: 
Shay Savage
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Day: August 23rd 2016
⭐⭐⭐⭐
AMAZON US | AMAZON UK
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Although Branford is broken and desperate, he finds himself with no choice: He must declare war against Hadebrand, or Edgar’s evil darkness will envelop the commonwealth. Silverhelm’s army is grossly outnumbered, but Branford underestimates the people’s love for their commoner queen. The people rise up in support of their beloved regent, and Branford sees a glimmer of hope for his wife. He becomes more determined than ever to make up for his previous failures and secure the future of his kingdom.
With their murderous intentions, the treacherous King Edgar and Princess Whitney must pay for what they have done. They must not be allowed to destroy everything the people hold dear.
With but faint hope in his heart, Branford gathers his people and marches toward the castle in Hadebrand, gathering allies along the way. With the support of other noble families, Branford will have to find the strength to fight for the very survival of his own family and the entire kingdom.

4 stars!

All good things come to an end! This seven part Historical series has been a great company these past few months and it ending is bittersweet.

All of you who waited to for it to be published, you can now read the complete series back to back and get to know these amazing characters and another shining example of how amazing Shay Savage is and how captivating her books are. I have yet to read a book of hers I haven’t at least enjoyed and a lot of hers are my favorites, including this series.

Branford and Alexandra have a final obstacle to overcome and oh my feels they do. This book is from his POV – finally – and it’s amazing! Being in his head is so fascinating and I’ve said this again but Shay can write a mean male POV, so worth the wait!

Kings & Queens, evil Princesses and court drama, this series has it all

about the author

Shay Savage lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her family and a variety of household pets. She is an accomplished public speaker, and holds the rank of Distinguished Toastmaster from Toastmasters International. When not writing, she enjoys science fiction movies, masquerading as a zombie, is a HUGE Star Wars fan, and member of the 501st Legion of Stormtroopers. When the geek fun runs out, she also loves soccer in any and all forms – especially the Columbus Crew, Arsenal and Bayern Munich – and anxiously awaits the 2014 World Cup. Savage holds a degree in psychology, and she brings a lot of that knowledge into the characters within her stories.

FACEBOOK | TWITTER | BLOG | GOODREADS

5 thoughts on “SERIES REVIEW — Unexpected Circumstances by Shay Savage”

    1. Oh you’re gonna love the rest of this series, prepare for all the feels (I’ve read it as a fanfiction – still remember the feels) Shay’s books are so amazing, you should try Transcendence, I really don’t think there’s a book out there similar to that one!

      1. Oh I am so excited for the rest of the series! But, I have to know-do they get their HEA? Because I will die if they don’t!!
        Shay Savage actually lives like 10 minutes from me! Small world!

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