She was taught to obey. Now she has learned to rebel.
12-year-old Isabella, a French princess marries the King of England - only to discover he has a terrible secret. Ten long years later she is in utter despair - does she submit to a lifetime of solitude and a spiritual death - or seize her destiny and take the throne of England for herself?
Isabella is just twelve years old when she marries Edward II of England. For the young princess it is love at first sight - but Edward has a terrible secret that threatens to tear their marriage - and England apart.
Who is Piers Gaveston - and why is his presence in the king's court about to plunge England into civil war?
The young queen believes in the love songs of the troubadours and her own exalted destiny - but she finds reality very different. As she grows to a woman in the deadly maelstrom of Edward's court, she must decide between her husband, her children, even her life - and one breath-taking gamble that will change the course of history.
This is the story of Isabella, the only woman ever to invade England - and win.
In the tradition of Philippa Gregory and Elizabeth Chadwick, Isabella is thoroughly researched and fast paced, the little known story of the one invasion the English never talk about.
©2013 Colin Falconer (P)2014 Colin Falconer
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"A different take on the tale"
So many times Isabella is portrayed as grasping and manipulative. The author finds a way to show that she only did what she had to do. The truth will never be known, but this does give the reader something to think about.
"A Bizarre "Reader's Digest" Version of History..."
This book is written in a very distinctive style that limits the content and the enjoyment.
Falconer's writing style is rushed and goes from one event to another without any content in-between. We have all seen this before, and in many texts it helps move the story along. However, Falconer abuses this method and skips years with no pause to develop the players in the story. This makes the courtship with the characters stunted and you end up not caring what happens to them. Isabella had many children, but other than a line or two we know nothing other than their names and order of birth. Who writes about a queen without discussing their children?! This is extremely careless writing! I kept thinking at some point Falconer would stop racing through the years and give these people life but he never did. Instead, Falconer relies on the seedy nature of the king to carry the story. We get it, he was gay, woohoo. That alone, with no additional substance, is NOT enough to carry an entire novel...
If you are a huge history buff (as I am) then maybe you will want to read this book simply because there are few historical fictions from this period. But be warned--don't expect too much.
"Nice historical fiction"
I liked the part towards the end where Isabella makes the decision to accept the role of emissary to France and then takes advantage of it to take charge of her own life by going against the king.
I hadn't heard anything by Anne Johnstonbrown before but I liked her performance. She had a pleasant voice and put just the right amount of emotional emphasis into it.
Unless it's an exceptionally engaging story, I find it hard to listen for that long, haha. But it was a decent story and I probably could have done it if I didn't have other things I had to do.
I didn't care for the way that it was written all in the present tense, but that's more of a personal preference. I might have bought a different book if I had known this, though.
I don't know anything about the real Isabella of France that the book was based on, so I can't judge how true to life this story may or may not have been, but it was a believable story.
I was hesitant about the book, as I had read that the author was misogynistic in his writing of women, but I am very glad that I went ahead with this work. The story is very well done, and the author thoughtful. He has your loyalties wavering throughout the book. The dialogue is also intriguing and I found myself laughing in some parts. The narrator was one of the best I've encountered; she did a fantastic job with the voices and accents. I'll be looking for her again in other books. Overall, It's a well written story, and I recommend it. Enjoy!
"Child Bride married at 12 rises to save England."
Isabella was born daughter of a French King. She became the English Queen at the age of 12. This is the story of their marriage. Edward did not want to be king and had terrible choice in friends. The characters are live people from the past. Royalty life and loyalty is very complicated and much treachery existed. An interesting historical novel.
"Must read for historical fiction readers."
Enjoyable and fun to read and listen to, the intrigue kept you guessing good read.
"interesting but slow in some parts"
I enjoyed the book but at several points felt like it dragged. The story was well told but did not meet my expectations. under further consideration I am not sure if I would read it again.
"An ok listen"
While the performance was good, I never really got into this book. The characters never really pulled me in. Isabella spends so much time supposedly in love with her husband but for the life of me I never saw anything in his character deserving of it. The same for her liason later on in the book. If this had been even one more hour I don't think I would been able to finish it.
"Good story, strange writing."
The story is in present tense. This makes it seem like it is happening as you read, which sounds like a good idea, but instead make it awkward to listen to.
I picked this book up because I'm a medieval British history buff and hadn't really read any his-fic about the time period covered in this story. Unfortunately, it was a terrible story. The narration is hard to follow; I felt no connection to any of the characters and the historical integrity is very questionable. Don't bother if you're looking for a good book...
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