Mistress to the Crown

   Posted by: Felicity Pulman   in Bookworm

Mistress to the Crown

Book Review:  Mistress to the Crown

Isolde Martyn, Mistress to the Crown.  Harlequin Mira, Chatswood, Australia, 2013. ISBN 9781743560211

It’s wonderful to see a new book from Isolde Martyn, and Mistress to the Crown more than lives up to the reputation of Martyn’s award-winning The Lady and the Unicorn and Knight and the Rose. The author’s knowledge and love of medieval history is evident as she deftly weaves fact and fiction together to flesh out the character of Edward IV’s mistress, the hitherto much maligned ‘Jane Shore’.

Jane’s plight (a young girl trapped in a loveless marriage to an older, impotent man) is sympathetically portrayed as is her motivation to change the odds stacked against her by becoming the mistress of a nobleman. She doesn’t just ‘sleep’ her way to success, however; feisty and independent, she forges her own destiny while at the same time keeping her door (and her heart) open to the poor, the needy and the misjudged who petition her for help – with a fitting reward for her kindness just when she most needs it. Historical details flesh out the scenes without intruding on these ‘affairs of the heart’ that make Jane such an appealing and memorable character.

Readers will enjoy this witty and page-turning glimpse into a past that is now so very much in the public eye with the unearthing of the remains of Edward IV’s brother, Richard III, from beneath the council carpark in Leicester.

Note:  This review has been previously published on Goodreads.  I meant every word, I think it’s important to those members who write books about this period that we get behind them and let people know about and enjoy their work.

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This entry was posted on Monday, July 15th, 2013 at 10:06 and is filed under Bookworm. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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  1. Richard III Society of NSW » Blog Archive » Talking takes history to a wider audience    Mar 30 2014 / 3pm:

    […] 27th. A guest of the Port Stephens Libraries at Tomaree and Raymond Terrace, she spoke on her novel Mistress to the Crown, her absorbing and well researched story about Elizabeth Lambard (aka Jane Shore). Many NSW Branch […]

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