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Gregory charts the vicissitudes of a high-stakes political marriage in her latest diverting epic. It's 1485; the Wars of the Roses have ended, but the victorious Henry VII sits insecurely on his throne. Still mourning her lover, Richard III, Princess Elizabeth of York must wed King Henry to unite their warring houses. Unlike his predecessors, Henry has no personal charm, and the novel excels at depicting his paranoia as royal pretenders pop up and threaten England's stability. Kept ignorant of the political scheming around her and caught between her York relations and securing her children's inheritance, Elizabeth can't match the dynamism of her mother, Elizabeth Woodville (The White Queen, 2009), or mother-in-law, Margaret Beaufort (The Red Queen, 2010), and they occasionally steal the spotlight. Nonetheless, the younger Elizabeth is an observant narrator, and her difficult position reflects historical reality, as does her growing closeness to her beleaguered husband. The repetitive language will either drive points home for readers or drive them batty, but the novel is as replete with intrigue and heartrending drama as Gregory's fans expect.--Johnson, Sarah Copyright 2010 Booklist
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In Gregory's fifth entry in the Cousins' War series, marriage unites the upstart House of Tudor with its long-time enemies, the declining House of York, to rule over volatile 1485 England. As Gregory envisions her, narrator Elizabeth of York-sister to the princes imprisoned in the Tower, mother of Henry VIII, grandmother of Elizabeth I-still loves the vanquished Richard III when she dutifully marries his triumphant challenger, Henry VII. The royal pair produces an heir and two spares but mistrust continues to abound, particularly between the two mothers-in-law, who are seemingly determined to fight the Wars of the Roses down to the last petal. Elizabeth must navigate the treacherous waters of marriage, maternity, and mutiny in an age better at betrayal than childbirth. Gregory believably depicts this mostly forgotten queen, her moody husband, and the future Henry VIII, shown here as a charmingly temperamental child. Something about the Tudors brings out the best in Gregory's portraiture. At this novel's core lies a political marriage seen in all its complexity, including tender moments, tense negotiations, angry confrontations, and parental worries over predictions that the family line will end with a Virgin Queen. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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Gregory's latest installment in her "Cousins War" series focuses on Elizabeth of York, whose marriage to Henry Tudor would in effect bring about the end of the War of the Roses. Elizabeth comes to her marriage in mourning for Richard III whom she loved deeply. The newly crowned Henry VII is a less than ideal husband-and a less than ideal king. He is in constant fear for his crown as one upstart pretender, then another, arises seemingly out of nowhere. Elizabeth, despite her feelings, tries to be a dutiful wife and comes to bear some affection for Henry, but the constant presence of his mother, Margaret Beaufort, who dominates the king and his court, causes friction between Henry and his queen. VERDICT Like the other titles in the series (The Red Queen; The White Queen; The Lady of the Rivers; The Kingmaker's Daughter), this rich tapestry brings to vivid life the court of Henry and Elizabeth. Meticulously drawn characters with a seamless blending of historical fact and fiction combine in a page-turning epic of a story. Tudor-fiction fans can never get enough, and they will snap this one up. [See Prepub Alert, 2/11/13.]-Pam O'Sullivan, Coll. at Brockport Lib., SUNY (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.