I received a copy of this book from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
Author: Elizabeth Chadwick
Series: Eleanor of Aquitane #2
Published: September 1, 2015 by Sourcebooks Landmark
It is the winter of 1154 and Eleanor, Queen of England, is biding her time. While her husband King Henry II battles for land across the channel, Eleanor fulfils her duty as acting ruler and bearer of royal children. But she wants to be more than this – if only Henry would let her.
Instead, Henry belittles and excludes her, falling for a young mistress and leaving Eleanor side-lined and angry. And as her sons become young men, frustrated at Henry’s hoarding of power, Eleanor is forced into a rebellion of devastating consequences. She knows how much Henry needs her, but does Henry know himself?
Overflowing with scandal, politics, sex, triumphs and tragedies, The Winter Crown is the much-awaited new novel in this trilogy and a rich, compelling story in its own right.
When I saw The Winter Crown on Netgalley a month ago and what it was all about it and I just had to read it! Since this is the sequel to The Summer Queen I knew I had to read that one first. Found it on Amazon for a pretty good price and started reading.
The Winter Crown picks up where The Summer Queen left off. We follow Eleanor as she takes on her role as Queen of England and tries to raise her children while being the peacemaker. Eleanor is forgotten and has no power and she starts to resent Henry and how he has treated her and the children. Only when things turn for the worst does Eleanor try to take back her power and it has huge consequences!
I fell in love with Ms. Chadwicks writing and Eleanor’s story. I remember reading A Royal Diaries book about Eleanor in middle school and I felt like she was so unique and strong in a world where women were not. There is very little about her in the history books and I felt that Ms. Chadwick did a splendid job of coming up with a story that is believable.
On that note….this is a very FAT book and yet the pacing never seemed off and I thoroughly enjoyed reading every bit. Ms. Chadwick portrays Eleanor as a strong Queen and Duchess in her own right and yet she has little power over everything. She can only rule through her son, Richard and only when he is of age. Eleanor then must be content with being the “brood mare” and relying on her own wit to get through everything.
I highly recommend this book if you love historical fiction especially about a woman who has so much at stake and yet we know so little about her!