Read between: 11th- 15th September
Number if pages: 452
Published: May 3rd, 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Synopsis: ‘I have lost my father in battle, my sister to Elizabeth Woodville’s spy, my brother-in-law to Elizabeth Woodville’s executioner, my nephew to her poisoner, and now my son to her curse…’
The gripping and ultimately tragic story of Anne Neville and her sister Isabel, the daughters of the Earl of Warwick, the most powerful magnate in England through the Cousins’ Wars. In the absence of a son and heir, he ruthlessly uses the two girls as pawns but they, in their own right, are thoughtful and powerful actors.
Against the backdrop of the court of Edward IV and his beautiful queen, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne turns from a delightful child growing up in intimacy and friendship with the family of Richard Duke of York to become ever more fearful and desperate as her father’s enemies turn against her, the net closes in and there is, in the end, simply nowhere she can turn, no one she can trust with her life.
Anne Neville is a girl who has to obey her father- her life is controlled by her father, Richard, Earl of Warwick- the Kingmaker. She’s an innocent young girl, stuck in the middle of the War of the Roses.
She hates Elizabeth Woodville, the new queen- that’s clear from the very beginning, and has to watch everything her father built up fall under her reign. So she has every right to dislike her! Then Anne finds herself betrothed to the Prince of France- her sister Isabel is already married to George, Duke of Clarence. Both men are eager to replace Edward themselves, both girls want to be Queen of England.
Once again, it’s Brother vs Brother- Cousin vs Cousin. Sister vs Sister.
Poor Anne has to deal with the loss of her sister through it all, but her fighting spirit and hatred for the Rivers keeps her strong. Strong enough to rise up, and up, to achieve her father’s ambition for her- to become Queen of England.
Which happens when Richard, Duke of Gloucester, her cousin, brother-in-law, saviour and husband, becomes King Richard III.
As a couple, their story is also interesting, but Anne’s is even more so. I enjoyed her story more than I though I would. In a time period where girls were deemed to be wives and mothers – she proves to be so much more.
Philippa Gregory focuses on the women of history- usually over looked by their husband’s, and I am glad she told the story of Anne Neville. Away from the court, monarchy, the war- I felt for Anne.
She never really got her own say in her life until Richard saves her from imprisonment by her sister.
She deals with death, betrayal, as well as love. Her story is fascinating.
Gregory has done it again, and let me see through the eyes of Anne, Queen of England, and really understand her story.
Thanks for reading!