I think I enjoyed this book even more than the first. I liked that the primary focus in this one was on Merton, the younger, wayward son and not so much on Alden. Merton, as a character, was complex and yet simple. Despite all that was said and rumoured about him, his heart was always in the right place and his heart was always for his brother Alden.
There is no doubt Yarde has this genre down to a tee and I did appreciate her explaining, at the end of the book, the research that went into the books. Arthur, of course, is mere legend, and much has been written celebrating that legend, but it is great to read something in the post-Arthurian period that explores a little-known time in British history. The "Dark Ages" as we term them are an integral part of what made Britain and Yarde's fiction, incorporating that period gives us a wonderful feel for the savagery and brutality, but also the humanity of the period.
For me, The Du Lac Devil stands very high in the list of books I have read in recent years and within its genre, it stands right at the top. I suspect the target market for this book was Y/A, however it is a fantastic read for adults of any age. If you love history, if you want to feel the recreation of a crucial time in British history, then you could do much worse than Yarde's fictionalised account of the Du Lac's.
My final comment, without giving anything away is that I always knew, what happened at the end of book two, was always going to happen, but what possibilities that makes for book three, which I am now hanging out for. I hope it is not too long in the coming.
Five plus stars for this superb Historical Novel. Kudo to the author, Mary Anne Yarde.