Another book that I chose to read for the Historical Reading Challenge (Royal Reviews Blog). First time read of this author and I had been wanting to read her books for sometime. Enjoyed her style of writing and the period in which she has set her story.
The tale is set in the reign of Elizabeth 1 and the series (this is number 5) sees the Queen become an amateur sleuth. This is the time of the plague in London and Elizabeth is at Hampton Court, which has as its feature, a hornbeam maze. But the maze becomes a murder scene, as first someone attempts to strangle Elizabeth, then a famed lawyer is murdered in the maze. Soon after his wife is found dead in another maze. The killer appears to be taunting the Queen and she enlists her closest peoiple to help solve the murders. To add to this, she is trying to keep her eyes on Lord Darnley and his parents, who want to return to Scotland. Elizabeth is thinking that maybe she can have Mary in Scotland marry Lord Darnley, maybe even Robert Dudley. William Cecil comes under investigation, as does his wife, and it is not until nearly the end of the story, you discover the identity of the murderer.
The historical names become like old friends once you have read a lot of historical fiction and I find this adds enjoyment of the story for me as well.
I am always on the lookout for notecards/paper, and these days there seems to be a lack of this type of writing paper. So yesterday I decided to print out some of my photos and make my own note cards. These are much more personalised and you can embellish to your hearts content.
While I was waiting for my bread to rise this morning, thought it was time that I got back into making my Artist Trading Cards etc, so here are the results. Only 1 ATC and 3 cards (4 x 4). I will use these images for my next batch of note cards
This is another book that I chose to read for the Historical Fiction Challenge (ROYAL REVIEWS), and was not disappointed.
Starts in the Autumn of 1488. Sancha of Aragon, natural daughter of the man who become Alfonso II, King of Naples. Like the Borgias, Sancha's people came to the Italian Peninsula by way of SPAIN. (Wonder whether this can be where the cruelty came into the bloodlines).
Sancha's grandfather, King Ferrante - a ruthless man with a streak of cruelty, who arranges for Sancha's bethrothal to Onorato. She is quite happy with this arrangement, but due to political alliances, is told that the marriage will not happen as she is to marry Jofre Borgia, who is only 11 years old at the time. Their marriage takes place when Sancha is 16 and Jofre "nearly 13".
Naples is plunged into war with the French and the family flees to Messina in Sicily. Eventually they all return to Naples and it takes sometime for the city to be rebuilt. Then the Pope, Alexander VI, requests his son Jofre, return to Rome with his wife Sancha as he wants all his family to be with him. The Pope is known for his womanising and Sancha is reluctant to move there. So it is that in 1496, they arrive in Rome and are welcomed by the Pope's second eldest child and only daughter, Lucrezia Borgia. At first there is jealousy between Lucrezia and Sancha, as Lucrezia fears that her father will turn to Sancha instead of her. We realise why when later in the story it is evident that Lucrezia and her father are lovers. Sancha thought is attracted to one of the Cardinals and learns later that he is Jofre's brother, Cesare. They eventually become lovers, and it is not until later that Sancha realises that Cesare is also the lover of Lucrezia and bears him a child.
There are so many twists and turns and at times you shudder at the cruelty that seems to go hand in hand with the power of the Borgia family at that time. Sancha sees the only way of stopping the family is to poison both the Pope and Cesare to stop the bloodshed, and this she does with the poison called Cantarella.
This is a wonderful tale of intrigue, history, love and betrayal and well worth reading.
It has been sometime since I last posted - too involved in gardening, sewing, and of course reading. Have just finished "Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict" by Laurie Viera RIGLER and loved the story, which has reawakened my interest in the stories of Austen. I know that I was sucked back into Pride and Prejudice, after watching the DVD(and Colin Firth), and now I need to read more of the books and see the other movies that are on offer.
This story was a delight to read and I notice on the Jane Austen site that there is another book called Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict.
Wonderful info. and links on this site and well worth a look.