Sunday, 21 July 2013

The Kingmakers Daughter

Well. Here I am again. Now, I know that many of you will have jumped for joy when my pre-Tudor and Tudor articles dried up, assuming that maybe I was free of the seven-year obsessive phase, and I haven't entirely reverted. Because if you put what I like to call a 'politicians spin' on this article, then it's really an article about a book, and not my usual pre-1800's article at all. The fact that the book is about the Tudors is negligible, and as I'm sure Nick Clegg would agree, a tiny fact like that is barely worth telling anybody...

Those of you who actually bother to read the title of posts on this blog may have a slight clue as to what book I'm about to rave about to you, and for those of you who can't be bothered to read, I'll spell it out: the book that I have been reading lately is The Kingmaker's Daughter. The Kingmaker's Daughter. Just in case you are having trouble getting the message as your brain has given out this close to the summer holidays : The. Kingmaker's. Daughter.

Right, now that's been sorted and everyone's on a level playing field, I'll get on with the actual article bit, which may contain slight traces of my favorite historical period. Sorry. Now, the reason for this relapse is not surprising. My Nan. Who decided to lend me a book that she really liked, knowing that we have similar tastes (so there's two people as crazy as me around). Now, I won't lie to you and tell you that I've torn my way through the book and finished it quicker than the cast of 'The Only Way is Essex' finishes a can of spray-tan, but I will tell you that I'm 1/4 through the book, and I'm already hooked. In fact, the only break I've had from reading 'The Kingmaker's Daughter' since 4:30, is writing this article about 'The Kingmaker's Daughter'.

The book follows Anne Neville through her life, taking off the silver-lined spectacles that we often view that life of nobility with, and showing us the harsh reality of England in the 1400's. Anne's Father is the famous Earl of Warwick, who was known for his ability to put whoever he wanted on the throne of England, but the book follows a period in which this ability seemed to have failed him. As well as showing the dramatic and tumultuous life of the Earl of Warwick himself- from 'Kingmaker' to outlaw, the book highlights the unpredictability of life in England, and the fragility of alliances. Reading the book, it is difficult to imagine a life where your sworn enemy one day can very quickly become your King, and you are fully expected to be loyal to him until the day you die. Or in fact until the day that he's knocked off the throne and you hate him again. England, in the 1400's was a place constantly at war, with everyone and their aunt claiming leadership, and many of them having a chance at leading the country. (Then again, Ed Milliband is the leader of the Labour Party, so not everything changes!)

Anyways, I'm very tired so I'm gonna stop writing now and probably eat some jelly... thanks for sticking with this article for so long and I'll probably update you on the story of Little Miss Neville.

PS from Mr C: Have you been watching The White Queen? Please let us know your opinions on it, good or bad. You can read more about Elizabeth Woodville here and there is still time to watch Philippa Gregory's programmes on what "really" took place. You may also find this 45 minute podcast from Radio 4 on the Wars of the Roses of interest.

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