BOOK CLUB: Cloaked in Bravery

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Cloaked In Bravery by Tony Matthews is a historical romance story. It is the story of Christian Davies who lived from 1667 to 1739.

Christian chose a rather unusual life, disguising herself as a man, and joining the British military to search for her missing husband.

When her husband, Richard Welsh, doesn’t return from an errand, she presumes he has met foul play and been killed.

A year later she receives a letter from Richard. He accidently sailed to Holland with a regiment and with no money to return to England, he had no other choice than to join the army.

Christian leaves her family and life to go in search of her husband. This is when she first disguises herself as a man and becomes a foot soldier in Holland. She has no luck in finding him.

Christian never doubts her belief that Richard is alive and even though it is a decade since she saw him, she enlists to fight in the War of Spanish Succession 1701.

On finding her husband after such a long time — there were some complications!

Her exploits during her many years in the army are captivating. Some are humorous and many are dangerous.

When her disguise is discovered, it doesn’t deter her from remaining in the life she has chosen.

She showed courage, and initiative and made many friends and enemies. Christian had a very outgoing personality suited to army life.

The research used for this account of a little-known heroine is Christian’s own book of her memoirs and a book by Dr J Wilson an army surgeon who served in the European campaigns at the same time as her.

The historical details and the love and devotion Christian had for her husband make this an interesting read. You are captivated by the story to find out exactly what becomes of Richard and Christian as individuals and as a couple.

Lovers of history, strong women and unusual romances will enjoy this book.

Tony Matthews has written many other books about unusual and not well-known aspects of war. 

The books mentioned at the end of Cloaked in Bravery sound rather interesting, and I will definitely be reading them too.

A selection of our members are reading Clocked in Bravery by Tony Matthews. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.

6 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: Cloaked in Bravery

  1. I was looking forward to reading Cloaked in Bravery as I adore books about strong women.
    Sadly did not enjoy this book as I found it was do full of statistics and facts that I got bogged down and found I was skipping over many pages.
    I will reread it at a future date and I am sure lovers of history will enjoy this book.

  2. I ended up reading this book by accident as it was sent to me instead of another one.
    This lady must have been very strong to join the army as she did to look for her husband. Not many would have the fortitude she has.
    I was not keen on all the statistics but the story was interesting.

  3. Tony has done a huge amount of research into war in Europe and the UK during the late 1600 and early 1700s. There is a lot of detail that would interest those who enjoy reading of battles and tactics and strategies.
    The principal character is a woman, Christian Davies, who disguised herself as a man and participated in many of these battles. Much of her story is based on facts gleaned from her diary, though there is the possibility that she didn’t write all of it. Her story is one of toughness, courage, cleverness, violence, determination, love and initiative. She became very well known, not just for her skill in fighting and her temper, but for her ability to scavenge supplies and make money. A most unusual woman! It is great to see her story told and have insight into ordinary life in those days. I enjoy stories about women who achieved extraordinary things but who have had little recognition.
    Thank you Wide Sky and Beauty & Lace for this book.

  4. Thank you, Beauty & Lace, for allowing me to read and review ‘Cloaked in Bravery by Tony Mathews’.
    This is a historically accurate story about the life of Christian Davies from 1667 to 1739. Christian joined the army dressed as a man to allow her to search for her missing husband, leaving her young children in others’ care. She was a strong, determined woman who reluctantly gave up army life only after her actual sex was found out.
    I found her story to be interesting. However, the amount of detail on battle/war statistics and background information was beyond what was needed to tell her story. My dad would have loved reading this book, being a war history buff. Thank you ‘Beauty & Lace Bookclub’ for the opportunity to read ‘Cloaked in Bravery by Tony Mathews’.

  5. Thank you Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to read Cloaked in Bravery by Tony Matthews.

    This is a very different read for me and I found myself skipping pages as there was too much extra information that it got a bit boring with statistics and lots of history.

    Still interesting that a lady dressed as a man to join the war to find her husband. Such a strong character.


  6. Cloaked in bravery, I found to be a rather different story telling of a woman that left her children at home to find her husband, dressed as a man.

    I found that fascinating! Firstly because 1. I could not imagine how difficult it would be to do such a thing in those times and 2. Leaving your children would be one of the hardest things to do at any stage.

    I must admit I did struggle with this one and I did skip a lot of the war events and found I was more intrigued by what happened to Christian so I searched them out including the letters written. I thought there was too much information on the war events rather than weaving them into the storyline.

    Very well researched tho and I give the author credit for that.

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