Picked this one up for being a sequel, but the only connection is that Berle is the grand-daughter of Gwynn and Burl ((Get it? feminized name1) and therefore is taught to read. When she runs away from home (typical hero-tale) and gets sold as a slave (a lot less typical) that makes a big difference.
The boy-half of the romance is also a grandchild of someone in the previous book, further spoilers spoilereth not.
Interesting story. Now that I know there is a whole series, I want to read them all.