Can You Tame a Shrew? Cover Reveal: FINDING KATE by Maryanne Fantalis

A delightful re-imagining of “The Taming of the Shrew,” sure to enchant longtime Shakespeare fans and newcomers alike.
 Paperback: April 11th
eBook: April 25th

Kathryn’s strong will and sharp tongue have branded her a shrew in her small town. Now, not even the generous dowry offered by her wealthy father can tempt any man to court her. But when Sir William rides into town on his magnificent war horse, Kathryn’s world turns upside down.

William is like a burr in Kathryn’s side from the very beginning. Even the way he insists on calling her “Kate” irritates her thoroughly, yet she can’t keep from listening for his voice. Though he claims he is the only man for her, she is certain he only wants her rich dowry. When he proposes marriage, she accepts as a way out of her miserable home.

Freed from her cruel family and judgmental town, Kathryn must decide whether she will continue her battle of wills with the sometimes charming, often maddening Sir William. Will she remain the shrewish Kathryn or find a way to be Will’s Kate? 

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If you asked my father, he’d tell you I got my husband thanks to his clever plans. If you asked my husband, he’d say he won me over with his wit and his charm. But really, it all started with a horse, a horse that stopped me in my tracks and changed my life. A flash of bright color in the corner of my vision made me turn my head. Two men were leading an enormous blood-red horse out through the door of the inn’s stable and onto the pounded dirt of the adjacent yard. I halted, my breath rushing out in astonishment. The beast was the approximate size and color of St. George’s dragon, or so it seemed to me, and it moved with the same sinuous, menacing grace. When it snorted, I jumped, half expecting gouts of flame to burst forth. The tread of each massive hoof raised a cloud of dust in the yard and seemed enough to shake the world, or at least the whole of England. I had some experience of the world, of course. I had seen large horses before, plowing the serfs’ fields outside of town or drawing Father’s heavy wagons full of merchandise, but this creature with flames in its eyes and cinders in its lungs was a thing apart.

The horse came to a stop, gleaming in the sun, and the men stepped away. One of them I recognized: Tom Smith, the town’s farrier and blacksmith. He moved toward the horse’s flank as the other, a stranger, grasped the stallion’s headstall, reaching under his chin. He looked the beast in the eye, seeming to engage him in a silent conversation, and then nodded to Tom. The smith crouched beside the giant animal, running his hand down a foreleg like a tree trunk and lifting one of the massive hooves. He rested it in his lap, cradling it firmly between his thighs while he inspected the shoe and the underside of the hoof. The stranger stood over him, throwing one arm across the horse’s neck and leaning into its bulk. The horse barely flinched at the man’s weight, even on three legs, as though he were no more burden than a fly. Though I quivered at the fire I sensed barely restrained within the animal, neither man seemed concerned. Even from this distance, I was arrested by the newcomer. His face was carved in pure angles: a straight nose, strong cheekbones, a level brow, a lean mouth that curved, even at rest, toward a smile. His hair, of a color somewhere between gold and brown, was short—a warrior’s cut—and standing up a little over his forehead. My fingers twitched, longing to smooth it down.

I wondered what color his eyes were.

He looked up at just that moment and spied me staring. He smiled, a wise smile, a knowing smile.