Ransom My Heart by Meg Cabot (Published by Avon, January 6, 2009)
In England in the year 1291, Finulla Crass, the adventurous daughter of the village miller, is determined to help her older sister, Mellana, who is pregnant out of wedlock and needs a substantial dowry in order to find a husband who will marry her despite her condition. The sisters come up with a rather unconventional plan - Finnula will find a wealthy man, kidnap him, and hold him for ransom in order to obtain the money Mellana needs. Finnula decides her captive will be a young earl, Hugo Fitzstephan, who has returned from the Crusades with quite a large fortune.
Hugo Fitzstephan is nothing like Finnula expected, however. The young knight is disturbingly handsome, and Finnula, who prefers hunting and riding to household tasks and is determined to never marry again after her first husband died before their wedding night, finds herself fighting her attraction for Hugo. Meanwhile, Hugo could escape at any time, but plays along as Finnula's "hostage" because he is curious about - and rather fascinated by - this unconventional young woman.
Ransom My Heart is an enjoyable and lighthearted medieval romance with an entertaining relationship between the main characters. It's not super heavy on historical detail, but I loved that it was different from most romances set in this time period, in that it had a unique storyline and featured a heroine who was a commoner rather than the typical sheltered young noblewoman. This book does have a bit more mature content than Meg Cabot's young adult books, however, so I wouldn't really recommend it to her younger fans. Historical romance readers as well as older teen and adult fans of the author are sure to enjoy this book, and I highly recommend it to them.