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The Reckoning by Sharon Kay Penman

The Reckoning (1991)

by Sharon Kay Penman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Welsh Trilogy (3)

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1,101167,536 (4.36)75



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Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
I can now say I've read all of Penman's novels, a baker's dozen of them, and my favorites remain The Sunne in Splendour and the first novel in the Welsh Princes trilogy, Here Be Dragons. I'd say this ranks just the next level down--a four and a half, rather than a five. Not to be counted among my favorite books of all time and it didn't move me to tears--but great as historical fiction nevertheless. I'm newly impressed with Penman's skills as a historical novelist. Her research is evident, she definitely conveys how alien the medieval mindset was compared to our times but makes her characters relatable. It can't be easy, fleshing out these stick figures we get mere outlines of from chroniclers, putting actions and words that fit.

If anything, that was the problem as I reached the end of the book. I dreaded that ending and it made me drag my feet those last hundred pages. In fact, I had deliberately avoided the last two books in this trilogy for years. Here Be Dragons is a true life love story--among the most moving I'd ever read, all the more for being based on real people. As a love story, it's has it's share of the bitter among the sweet, but of all of Penman's books I'd say its the most upbeat. But the other two? Well, anyone who knows anything about British history would know that it wasn't long after the events of that book that Wales was swallowed into England. The very titles of the books gave me pause: "Falls the Shadow" and "The Reckoning." If that weren't enough, well, Penman is all to good at showing the flaws and foibles of the characters that doomed them--and poor Wales. All at the same time making medieval Wales terribly appealing to a modern reader. At the same time she doesn't demonize Edward I--but you want to damn him thoroughly anyway!

And now, if you'll excuse me I think I'll begin the process of Penman withdrawal by finding the fluffiest, more sickening sweet and upbeat story I can. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Jun 22, 2016 |
The Reckoning successfully concludes Penman’s England/Wales trilogy. Once again Penman completely draws the reader into the lives of people, places and events of long ago. I highly recommend this series to anyone interested in historical fiction. ( )
  Melissa_J | Jan 16, 2016 |
read again 2014 ( )
  VictoriaJZ | Sep 25, 2014 |
Third of the trilogy. I enjoyed this one more, because the heroine was less caught in the middle of the conflict. Still lots of war and battle scenes. Edward was more humane than I had expected, even while using his cousin, Ellen as a pawn in the conflict of wills with Llewelyn (grandson of the first Llewelyn.). The brother Ddavyd was a manipulative character, constantly changing sides when it benefitted him. ( )
  Pmaurer | Nov 14, 2013 |
Follow on from "Falls the Shadow". Picks up after a gap of 5 years, and concentrates on the story of Llewelyn and the end of an independant Wales. I'm left with the urge the give Edward I a massive thump for being so blinkered and almost hypocritical, as well as to give David (Llewelyn's younger brother) a dammed good slapping for being both such a schemer and so very naieve at one and the same time. Terribly sad in lots of places, and the ending is very bleak. I'm torn between wanting Llewelyn and wales to survive and knowing that they don't. But it is a good read. ( )
  Helenliz | Apr 1, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sharon Kay Penmanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Leister, BryanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
“Never forget, Llewelyn, that the world’s greatest fool is a Welshman who trusts an English king.”

His father’s words haunt Llewelyn ap Gruffydd, Prince of Wales, who has been ruling uneasily over his fractious countrymen. Above all else, Llewelyn fears that his life and his own dream—of an independent, united Wales—might be lost to Edward I’s desire to expand his English empire.

Alive from the pages of history, this is the hauntingly beautiful and compelling tale of a game poised to play itself out to its bloody finale as English and Welsh cross swords in a reckoning that must mean disaster for one side or the other.

For anyone who has ever wanted to experience the rich tapestry of British history and lore, this bold and romantic adventure must be read.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345378881, Paperback)

"Penman's characters are so shrewdly imagined, so full of resonant human feeling that they seem to be on the page....Most compelling is the portrait of the Welsh as wild and rugged as their landscape."
Here, alive from the pages of history, is the compelling tale of a Celtic society ruled by Llewelyn, Prince of Wales, on a collison course with a feudal realm of Edward I. WIth this last book in the extraordinary trilogy that began with HERE BE DRAGONS and continued in FALLS THE SHADOW, Sharon Kay Penman has written a beautiful and moving conclusion to her medieval saga. For everyone who has read the earlier books in this incomparable series or ever wanted to experience the rich tapestry of British history and lore, this bold and romantic adventure must be read.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:59:57 -0400)

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The final novel in a trilogy of thirteenth century England, which started with 'Here be dragons' and 'Falls the shadow'.

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LibraryThing Author

Sharon Kay Penman is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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Author Chat

Sharon Kay Penman chatted with LibraryThing members from Aug 10, 2009 to Aug 21, 2009. Read the chat.

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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