“Savage Forest is a beautifully written novel about a love affair between a lovely Swedish maiden, Jenna Ulfsson, who has been taken captive by a tribe of Lenni Lenape Indians in the Northeastern Woodlands of the New World, and a handsome, highly testosterone-endowed Lenape warrior named Running Wolf.
Although structured primarily as a steamy, emotional and thrilling libidinous struggle between the Swedish maiden and the competing interests of her male and female captors, the book has also been rigorously researched in terms of the geography and history of early America, especially in terms of the Lenni Lenape mores and folkways. In fact, the author might also have written a non-fiction book regarding this important early American Indian tribe and the pristine, yet often-treacherous ecological environment in which the tribe lived.
The reader is cleverly drawn into this time period, while kept on edge regarding the fair maiden’s efforts to navigate the Lenni Lenape culture and the mutually insatiable physical attraction between her and Running Wolf. The story takes many exciting and entertaining twists and turns as the two lovers are frequently forced by tribal traditions and the treachery of unwanted admirers to suppress their love and sexual desires for each other. How this narrative unfolds to reach an emotional, surprising, and violent conclusion keeps the reader engaged throughout.
The writer, Jessica Leigh, shows enormous potential as the author of a first novel. Her prose is often almost poetic, and her knowledge of the geography and ambience of the Delaware River Valley and of early Native American culture is daunting. Savage Forest is an exciting, romantic, and informative novel by an author who has hidden her exceptional literary talents for much too long. ”