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The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory
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The Red Queen

by Philippa Gregory

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2,5951113,696 (3.59)142
Married to a man twice her age, quickly widowed, and a mother at only fourteen, Margaret Beaufort is determined to turn her lonely life into a triumph. She sets her heart on putting her son on the throne of England regardless of the cost to herself, England, and even her son. Disregarding rival heirs and the overwhelming power of the York dynasty, she names him Henry, like the king; sends him into exile; and pledges him in marriage to her enemy Elizabeth of York's daughter. As the political tides constantly move and shift, Margaret charts her own way through another loveless marriage, treacherous alliances and secret plots, always with her ultimate goal before her.… (more)
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i don’t hate this book, but i do hate margaret beaufort ( )
  sulla2 | Oct 13, 2019 |
I definitely don't like this series as much as the Elizabethan ones. To sound like a teenager for a moment, the War of the Roses is boring and tedious and it is not made less so in these books. If I wanted to read history I would read something else. I want to read a completely implausible tale of treachery and lechery with some names I recognize to ring out summer. I hope that the series picks up and turns into that but I fear it won't. ( )
  NML_dc | Aug 17, 2019 |
Outstanding! Fantastic series. ( )
  ltl1red | Jul 9, 2019 |
Margaret Beaufort was Henry VII's mother. Although she felt a calling to God, she was married at 12 years old, and had Henry was she was 13. From then on, her entire life was devoted to seeing Henry as King of England. But, this was during the Wars of the Roses – cousins fought over the English throne – so there were many other people vying for that crown. But, Margaret did what she had to do to make it happen.

Despite not liking Margaret (even in a novel!), I really liked this story. Obviously, I knew the outcome, but it was interesting to see how they got there. I have only just started reading about some of the people from this time period, so it was nice to round that out a bit more, as I hadn't yet read anything that focused on Margaret. I often get bored with descriptions of battles in books, but I actually found some of these quite interesting. I was a little disappointed that the author's note didn't describe what was or wasn't fictionalized, and I thought it ended a little abruptly (I would have liked to have learned the outcomes of a few of the other people – ones I didn't know anything about). Other than that, though, I really enjoyed it. ( )
  LibraryCin | Jul 5, 2019 |
This is an interesting version of the life of Margaret Beaufort, ending right as her son wins The Battle of Bosworth and becomes the first Tudor Monarch. There is even a bit of military history thrown in during the Battle description, which I always find fascinating.
I really enjoy Philippa Gregory's novels. History has always portrayed Margaret as a difficult woman, and this novel certainly reinforces that idea. I would not have wanted to be her daughter-in-law, or even her son. Good stuff. ( )
  a1stitcher | Jun 22, 2019 |
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The light of the open sky is brilliant after the darkness of the inner rooms. I blink and hear the roar of many voices. But this is not my army calling for me, this whisper growing to a rumble is not their roar of attack, the drumming of their swords on shields. The rippling noise of linen in the wind is not my embroidered angels and lilies against the sky, but cursed English standards in the triumphant May breeze. This is a different sort of roar from our beloved hymns, this is a howl of people hungry for death: my death.
The light of the open sky is brilliant after the darkness of the inner rooms.
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An heiress to the red rose of Lancaster, Margaret Beaufort believes that her house is the true ruler of England and that she has a great destiny. Her ambitions are disappointed when her cousin King Henry VI fails to recognize her as a kindred spirit, and she's even more dismayed when he sinks into madness. Sent into remote Wales to marry a man twice her age, quickly widowed, and a mother at only 14, Margaret is determined to turn her lonely life into a triumph. She sets her heart on putting her son on the throne of England regardless of the cost to herself, to England, and even to the little boy. Disregarding rival heirs and the overwhelming power of the York dynasty, she sends her son Henry into exile in France and pledges him in marriage to a daughter of her enemy, Elizabeth of York. As the political tides constantly move and shift, Margaret charts her own way through another loveless marriage, treacherous alliances, and secret plots. She feigns loyalty to the new king, Richard III, and even carries his wife’s train at her coronation.

Widowed a second time, Margaret marries the ruthless, deceitful Thomas, Lord Stanley. Gambling her life and her son's future that he will support her, she then masterminds one of the greatest rebellions of the time — all the while knowing that her son has grown to manhood, recruited an army, and now waits for his opportunity to win the greatest prize.
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