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Search tags: Wars-of-the-Roses
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review 2019-11-26 22:52
Ravenspur: Rose of the Tudors (Wars of the Roses #4) - Conn Iggulden
Ravenspur: Rise of the Tudors - Conn Iggulden

The more I think about this book, the more my rating decreases. I think that means I should probably stop thinking about it. That's not likely to happen any time soon. See, I have a huge problem. The problem is, this should have been two books. One book focusing on Edward IV retaking the throne from Henry VI. One book focusing on everything after Tewkesbury including Henry Tudor's coming to the throne of England. Instead we get both of these things crammed into one book. Is something really crammed if it's nearly 500 pages? 


Part one in which Edward IV is in exile and Henry VI (or what's left of him) is back on the throne is excellent. Iggulden writes a battle scene second only to Bernard Cornwell*.His characters are well rounded. The only thing I wish Iggulden would learn is to separate his personal feelings from his characters. His disdain for Elizabeth Woodville and her family is fairly obvious. However, his reasons for this disdain are not. The lack of screen time Henry Tudor is given would also lead me to believe Iggulden isn't a huge fan of the Tudors overall. Which leads me to wonder why one would even write this book. I digress.


Part two is like an irritating movie. You've been watching this incredible piece of cinema for nearly two hours when suddenly the director realizes they need to wrap it up and get butts out of the theater. Everything is thrown together. Questions you've had from the beginning are sort of answered. Suddenly the credits are rolling. You're not sure how you got to the end yet here you are. I'm sure there are reasons why this series didn't stretch into five books instead of four. Pretty good ones I would imagine since the four books were originally only suppose to be three. However, it doesn't change my opinion. This series should have been five books. Iggulden should have (or been allowed to have) time to really write about the "rise of the Tudors".  


All of those things being said, I would still recommend this series about the Wars of the Roses over anything Philippa Gregory has produced. I wouldn't even recommend wasting time, paper, or energy with PG's "Cousins' War" series. 


I'm planning on starting The Sunne in Splendour by Sharon Kay Penman fairly soon. I haven't decided if this is a good idea or one of the worst ideas I've had in a while. Time will tell. 










*Uhtred wins every time. Fight me on this. 

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review 2019-02-20 18:17
The Tudor Rose - Margaret Campbell Barnes
Tudor Rose - Margaret Campbell Barnes

There is just something about older historical fiction. Whether it's Barnes, Plaidy, or Seton, there is just something about the writing style that most modern historical fiction misses. I just can't imagine any of my grandchildren reading anything by Philippa Gregory and commenting on the serenely, lyrical way Gregory sets a scene. Because she doesn't. That's a story for a different time folks.


One of the things I enjoy most about books set during this time period is seeing how the authors deal with some of the more controversial happenings of the day. In this instance, the characterization of Richard III and the mystery surrounding to what happened to the Princes in the Tower. Barnes deals with both in a believable manner. Richard III isn't some hunchbacked, snarling, fork-bearded bad guy bent on ruling with an iron fist. He's not an overly romanticized nice guy by any means. Does Barnes believe Richard III to be responsible for the death of Edward V and his younger brother Richard? Absolutely. She uses the Tyrell argument which some might find weak. However, it's important to take into account when this book was written. That was the primary theory at the time. Barnes doesn't try to argue anything from left field. She works with the evidence as presented at the time. She's not trying to re-invent the wheel. It works for this story.


One of the other things I enjoyed about Barnes' storytelling was the manner in which she portrayed Margaret Beaufort, mother of Henry VII. Personally, I think Margaret tends to be over vilified. She was a product of her raising and the times. She held to her faith in God and her son. Do I think she was a little overbearing as a mother-in-law? As someone who knows a thing or two about an overbearing mother-in-law, yes. Margaret probably was a bit much to handle. Do I think she was as easy going and loving as Barnes wants us to believe? Not quite. I don't think you get to where Margaret got in life by being full of sunshine and daisies. I also wasn't a huge fan of how Barnes continued to try to convince me that Beaufort was head over heels in love with her first husband and Henry's father, Edmund Tudor. Margaret knew the man for all of five minutes before he made her pregnant and then died after being captured in battle. She was 12 when they were married. Trying to convince me she was head over heels in love with the man is going to take a lot of work. 


If I'm going to compare Elizabeth of York stories, I will say I like Plaidy's interpretation just a tad better. Barnes' Elizabeth comes off a little weak and at times flighty. However, her love for England and her family can never be doubted. Overall, it's a pleasant story and makes for an enjoyable, light read. 

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text 2018-03-06 15:07
Why Elizabeth Woodville?

The lovely Stephanie Churchill has invited me to her blog to talk about why I decided to write about Elizabeth Woodville in Once a Queen.


Source: www.stephaniechurchillauthor.com/788-2
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text 2018-02-26 20:20
New Release! Once a Queen


Source: myBook.to/OnceAQueen
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text 2018-02-20 21:22
The Husbands of Margaret Beaufort

A big THANK YOU to Tudor Times for inviting me to talk about Margaret Beaufort and her four husbands!




Source: tudortimes.co.uk/guest-articles/the-husbands-of-margaret-beaufort
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