30 October 2012

The Kingmaker’s Daughter (Philippa Gregory)

In my eyes, Philippa Gregory can do no wrong. She introduced me to historical fiction as a genre (before which I assumed it was all Georgette Hayer) and aroused my fascination with the British royal family. She broadened my literary horizons.

In The Kingmaker’s Daughter, Gregory takes the final step in her Cousins’ War quartet (the others are The Red Queen,The White Queen and The Lady of the Rivers) and introduces the daughters of Richard Neville, formidable Earl of Warwick.

The Earl is ‘the kingmaker’ because he orchestrates events so that only his favourites take the throne. It is little surprise, then, that he pulls the political strings for Anne and Isabel too – not of love for them, but of a thirst for power and control.

England being what it is in the fifteenth century, it’s not long before the Earl makes war on his former friends. And Anne, married off at age fourteen, must face early widowhood, a second marriage, intrigues and conspiracies, and the loss of her mother and sister (one to house arrest and the other to the enemy camp).

The New York Post has described this series as a tale of “royal witches, philanderers and kingslayers” and this novel as “the story of King Richard III's wife, Anne Neville, who went from the marital bed of one royal prince to that of another king-to-be during this long family feud.” I can’t improve much on that summary. This is another goodie.


1 comment:

Melinda said...

Phillippa Gregory is one of those authors I still need to explain. I'm just not sure which of her books to start with! Lovely review.