Severed Knot

Barbados 1652. In the aftermath of the English Civil War, the vanquished are uprooted and scattered to the ends of the earth.

When marauding English soldiers descend on Mairead O’Coneill’s family farm, she is sold into indentured servitude. After surviving a harrowing voyage, the young Irish woman is auctioned off to a Barbados sugar plantation where she is thrust into a hostile world of depravation and heartbreak. Though stripped of her freedom, Mairead refuses to surrender her dignity.

Scottish prisoner of war Iain Johnstone has descended into hell. Under a blazing sun thousands of miles from home, he endures forced indentured labour in the unforgiving cane fields. As Iain plots his escape to save his men, his loyalties are tested by his yearning for Mairead and his desire to protect her.

With their future stolen, Mairead and Iain discover passion and freedom in each other’s arms.  Until one fateful night, a dramatic chain of events turns them into fugitives

B.R.A.G.Medallion Honoree; Finalist for the 2019 Chaucer Award; Longlisted for the HNS 2018 New Novel Award

In Praise of Severed Knot

“Bleakly impossible choices face the protagonists in the brutal aftermath of civil war. Stark but involving tale of early colonial exploitation strongly centres on an indomitable Scottish hero.”

Long listed for the HNS 2018 New Novel Award

“The author is a skilled writer. Her descriptions of the conditions both on the slave ship and the prisons is very well done and takes the reader on a harrowing journey. The characters are both believable and their stories very well delivered. I highly recommend this book for the B.R.A.G.Medallion and look forward to reading the first book in this series!”


“Ms Bazos writes of this heartbreaking period in history with empathy and passion and the result is a novel of depth, breadth and hauntingly beautiful moments.”

Discovering Diamonds

“Severed Knot is incredibly ambitious, tautly gripping, and an absolute triumph.”

Silver Medalist – 2019 Historical Fiction Book of the Year ~ Coffee Pot Book Club

“In Severed Knot, the historical details made me feel as though I was right there witnessing the story. I adored this fabulous tale with Iain and Mairead. I highly recommend it. It is getting five plus stars from me. This is one of those books that should not be overlooked for 2019.”  

Locks, Hooks and Books

“Cryssa Bazos’s sets the bar in realistic historical fiction. Her ability to precisely set the character conflict with romance, for a powerful and unforgettable, riveting novel

Gwendalyn’s Books