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Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory

Lady of the Rivers (edition 2012)

by Philippa Gregory

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8325010,861 (3.79)33
Title:Lady of the Rivers
Authors:Philippa Gregory
Info:Simon & Schuster Ome (2012), Paperback
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, history

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The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory


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I have been listening to this series of books on audio, and let me tell you, I am so glad that I have chosen this method. Amata has done most of the narrating in the series so far and she doesn't fail to nail the characters every time! You get a glimpse of Jacquetta in previous installments so it was interesting to see things from her point of view this time.

When Jacquetta is just a young girl, one of her aunts sees a special gift in her. A mysterious gift that has been attained by many females in the family. Jacquetta will spend years learning to harness her powers to help herself and her entire family. Although the book touched on this subject it wasn't overwhelming as it really was a small but important element of the story. It did help to clarify events from the previous installments though.

From the previous books I had labeled Jacquetta to be a heartless and cruel woman, but this novel proved her to be the exact opposite. She was a passionate woman who would do anything to protect those she loves. And the love she declared for her mate was proved countless times, with the many children they had together.

Although this is part of a series, I think this book would also be fine as a stand alone novel. I did enjoy this audiobook, but it probably is my least favorite so far, but maybe that's because Jacquetta is my least favorite character! With themes of love, family, and war, you may enjoy this book just as much, if not more, than I did. I recommend this novel for either personal leisure or as a book club selection. ( )
  jo-jo | Aug 2, 2014 |
This book is told from the viewpoint of Jacquetta of Luxemburg, who became the Duchess of Bedford when she was 17, making her wife to the regent of England - the duke being uncle to Henry VI who was then too young to rule.

The story covers the period of 1430-1464, thus it comprises of the times leading up to the Wars of the Roses, and the early years of these conflicts.

When the duke dies not long after their marriage, the duchess "lowers" herself by marrying Sir Richard Woodville. Together they produce many children, one of whom - Elizabeth - grows up to marry Edward IV, so as their eldest daughter goes on to marry Henry VII, Jacquetta - a little-known historical figure - is in fact Henry VIII's great-grandmother.

Author Philippa Gregory notes that she considers Jacquetta an overlooked woman form history. As there is little info on Jacquetta's life, Ms Gregory was able to use her imagination to fill in the gaps, focusing heavily on the superstition that Jacquetta was descended from the legend of Melusina; a woman believed to be a goddess who associated her powers with water.

I think I may have enjoyed this story more had there been less emphasis on the supernatural and a bit more realism, but that's not to say the magical elements drag the novel down. I'm also not a fan of narratives told in the present tense, but this is just a personal taste, not a criticism of the author.

Worth reading. ( )
  PhilSyphe | Mar 21, 2014 |
The best of the series...so far. Really enjoyed it. ( )
  ava-st-claire | Feb 21, 2014 |
Have I not read this book before, it would appear not this actual book but certainly soemthing like it. Perhaps this is based on some historical person on which abnother book was based but I found it rather frustrating when i knew exactly what was going to happen.
However still a good solid read for those into historical fiction.
  jessicariddoch | Nov 26, 2013 |
Having enjoyed the recent series of The White Queen, I thought I would give the books a read as in my experience a book is usually better than it's TV/film adaptation. I chose to start with this book as, although it is officially the third book in the Cousins' War series, it is the first book in the chronological order.

I started the book with high expectations and it certainly did not disappoint me. The book follows Jacquetta's story, mother of Elizabeth Woodville, future Queen of England. Jacquetta's involvement with King Henry VI and his wife Margaret of Anjou is a fascinating story, it is interesting to follow the story of Henry VI and Margaret as the King loses control of his mind and his kingdom.

If the other books in the series are as good as this one, then I shall be very happy indeed. I now have a craving to find a non-fiction book that tells me more of Jacquetta's story. ( )
  Sahara20 | Sep 19, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Philippa Gregoryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Amato, BiancaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
Jacquetta had the gift of second sight which she learned at an early age to keep secret. As a child she had met Joan of Arc, who had the same gift, but had met a horrific death when she was accused of witchcraft.   Jacquetta's 'talent' took her into close proximity to the English royal family, which resulted in her becoming mother of the White Queen, Elizabeth Woodville.
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When the death of Joan of Arc shows her the dangers faced by strong women, Jacquetta, a psychic descendant of a river goddess, studies alchemy and becomes the secret wife of Richard Woodville before returning to the court of Henry VI.

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