26 September, 2006

Blog Hiatus, and Queen of Shadows

I'm off on my holidays for a couple of weeks - we're staying with my mum in the Lake District for a few days, then driving down to Gloucestershire on my 'Edward II Pilgrimage'! My next post will be on 11 October, or thereabouts.

If you haven't read the comments on the last post, please do so - Carla and I had a fascinating discussion going on. When I get back, I'll write some more posts on the theory that Edward II wasn't murdered at all, and on his escape from Berkeley Castle in the summer of 1327.

Before I go, here's a review of Edith Felber's Queen of Shadows, released 7 November, from Amazon.com:

Isabella, the French princess at the center of Felber's deftly plotted historical, matures from a 12-year-old bride of Edward II of England to a clever conspirator driven by a thirst for power. Not so secretly gay and viewed as weak, Edward is ordered by Parliament to share his throne with the Earl of Winchester, whose son, Hugh, attracts Edward's attention. Isabella chafes at having to share the throne, particularly with Hugh, who proves to be a rapacious presence. One of Isabella's ladies-in-waiting, Gwenith of the Marches, secretly plans revenge against Edward for his killing of her family, but her dedication to Isabella complicates her mission. After being introduced by Gwenith, Isabella takes condemned nobleman Roger Mortimer, imprisoned in London Tower, as a lover and with him plots a coup that unseats Edward and positions Isabella's son Edward as king. But Roger is shiftier than he initially appears, and allegiances, as ever, are up for grabs. The book is filled with strong-willed characters, though Edward's homosexuality is clumsily handled. Felber, who has written many historical romances as Edith Layton, delivers what fans of the genre want.

A big, resounding 'hmmmm....'. The bit about Edward being ordered by Parliament to share his throne with Winchester (Hugh Despenser the Elder) is complete nonsense, and the bit about Isabella and Roger Mortimer being introduced by Gwenith makes me giggle ("Your grace, this is Lord Mortimer, whom you've been seeing around court for the last few years. Lord Mortimer, this is the queen of England." Mortimer: "Seriously??") Not sure about the 'clumsily handled homosexuality' either. I hope Felber hasn't made Edward into a flaming queen, or there may be a book/wall interface. And 'London Tower'?? I hope that's Publishers Weekly's error, not Felber's.

Still, I'm looking forward to it, although I have a feeling I'm not going to like it very much...but only time will tell.


Carla said...

I make that three of them sharing the throne so far; Edward, the Earl of Winchester and Isabella. I know a throne is bigger than your average chair, but still, it must be getting a bit friendly.

Have a great holiday!

Gabriele Campbell said...

Now, if it had been young Hugh and not his daddy, they could have some nice threesomes on that chair. :)

Have fun. I'll post something about the secret sex life of German kings in the meantime.

Kathryn Warner said...

LOL, Carla - it must be getting a bit cosy, to say the least!

Gabriele - now you're putting some very naughty ideas in my head. ;) Look forward to the post!

Kathryn Warner said...

Hi Jess, thanks for dropping by! I'll be at Berkeley on Sunday - shame we'll miss each other! I'll blog about it when I get back, so maybe we can compare notes?

Anonymous said...

English history shows Sir Robert Knolles as born in Cheshire, England. - I have a different story: Robert Knollike *1306 in Stadthagen, Germany, ø1331 joined a German brigade in the service of Engl;and's King Eduard III fighting in the Normandy against France (The 100 Year War).. The brigade was lead for a long time by Schaumburg's Duke Heinrich II, the "Ironman" (†1381). English history shows Robert K. as Sir Robert Knollys *1317, †1407 ,knighted 1351. French writer Jehan Bel asserts Knollys was a German. Ernst