First Love: The Silver Land

I was in sixth grade when my friend Amber passed me this book. “It’s really good,” she said, and I was puzzled because if the term had existed then, we’d have called Amber a “reluctant reader.”

I read the book.

silver land

And oh-my-giddy-goodness, I could not believe it. The sex scenes were mind-blowing to an impressionable young twelve-year-old. In fact, I still remembered them over a decade later, but I was fuzzy on the other details of the story . Sadly, I’d returned Amber’s book, so I hunted down a used copy to read again.

It’s the story of a Celtic girl whose village is ransacked and destroyed by Romans. She’s taken and raped and beaten. Later, she becomes a slave (and raped some more, if I’m remembering correctly), and then a Druid priestess, where she is likely raped again.

I don’t know if they used the word “consent” in 1989. The Silver Land definitely falls into the category of “old-skool” romances discussed in Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan’s book, Beyond Heaving Bosoms.

The book has some definite faults, but I’ll always have a soft spot for it (and a place on my shelf) because it was my first romance novel.


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