Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Kingmaker's Daughter - Phillipa Gregory

One genre I have always enjoyed, but probably don't make enough time for, is historical fiction. I recently borrowed The Kingmaker's Daughter by Phillipa Gregory from the library. It was published in 2012.
Spies, poison, and curses surround her... Is there anyone she can trust? The Kingmaker's Daughter is the gripping story of the daughters of the man known as the "Kingmaker," Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick: the most powerful magnate in fifteenth-century England. Without a son and heir, he uses his daughters, Anne and Isabel as pawns in his political games, and they grow up to be influential players in their own right. In this novel, her first sister story since The Other Boleyn Girl, Philippa Gregory explores the lives of two fascinating young women. At the court of Edward IV and his beautiful queen, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne grows from a delightful child to become ever more fearful and desperate when her father makes war on his former friends. Married at age fourteen, she is soon left widowed and fatherless, her mother in sanctuary and her sister married to the enemy. Anne manages her own escape by marrying Richard, Duke of Gloucester, but her choice will set her on a collision course with the overwhelming power of the royal family and will cost the lives of those she loves most in the world, including her precious only son, Prince Edward. Ultimately, the kingmaker's daughter will achieve her father's greatest ambition.

Elizabeth's Review

3 stars

Definitely a  well researched and well written book. There are parts of the story that drug for me, especially Anne's childhood and the time she spent with Isabel and George. Given that this is a novel, it would have been nice to have had more insight into her relationship with Richard.

I couldn't help but feel sorry for Anne. Women had so little power in the 15th century and she seemed to be besieged by people who wanted to use her. I wish I knew how much was real versus artistic license, but I definitely felt sorry for her. There almost seems to be a moral lesson being taught - be careful what you wish for because you might just get it.

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