I found this title in the coming soon to Audible area of the web site. It sounded terrific when I researched the series. Plus there was the added pe..Show More »rk of many glowing reviews on Audible UK. Overall it seemed like a perfect fit for me. I have read numerous books about Eleanor of Aquitaine and her life and this sounded like a wonderful series to look forward to.
The trouble started with a minor irritation in that the author and narrator decided to use the historic pronunciation of Eleanor's name. I soon got use to the odd pronunciation but in a way it sounded overly prissy and unnecessary. To me the narration came across as very young and childish. I suggest a careful listen to the sample before buying the book.
The focus points the author chose to examine and stress in the story moved this book squarely into the Romance Genre for me -- without question. For example--when the old King of France died-- two lines are spent on this in the story explaining he had died, the travel to Paris AND that a rebellion was squelched on the way. Then paragraphs and even chapters are spent describing intimate details of the wedding night and other encounters of this kind.
Further, I just finished watching the cable program The White Queen and so much of the court life depicted here in this book could be lifted from that story. The nastiness, the disapproving hateful mother-in-law and the daily traumas and manipulations. More than all of this I found the book slow. Very slow. I could have used more fact, more history and a great deal less conjecture and imaginings. Can not recommend-- unless you love a good romance.
Eleanor of Aquitaine is one of my favorite historical figures. Sometimes greatness is aligned with destiny. Not often but it happens and when it does ..Show More »it's magnificent. Such is the case with Eleanor and Elizabeth Chadwick has done her research. Fortunately, because Eleanor is so interesting there's not too much fiction needed. She's colored the black-and-white photos but the bones of the facts are there. Add William Marshall to the mix and you I have characters that are so inspiring it's hard to believe they lived. I highly recommend Chadwick's Marshall series also, and The Scarlet Lion (the story of Richard the Lion Heart). these three major players lives are so intertwined you can't tell the story of one without mentioning the others. What a great way to get a feeling for history. I love these books as much as I did Braveheart. What magnificent people.