The Tudor Conspiracy by C.W. Gortner
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
A few days ago Courtney Lewis blogged about New Adult and ended with "I'd be interested to hear what other people feel fall into New Adult but are not contemporary romance. What is out there that would appeal to this transitioning age group?"
Well, here's one that's not just historical fiction but the lead is not some plucky girl, it's a young man (probably late teens - if we're told, I forgot the exact age)! Perfect for history loving guys. I'm going to call this YA, because it really doesn't feel like a fully adult read.
Set in the Tudor Era, during Queen Mary's reign, we get a serious dose of the intrigues and plot surrounding Mary, her half-sister Elizabeth, the proposed marriage of Mary to Philip of Spain, and the Dudley family (already in the Tower for the whole Queen Jane Grey thing, soon to be in bigger trouble over the Wyatt Rebellion). Our hero is Desmond Prescott, who alludes to his royal blood (he's from the wrong side of the blanket) often and is loyal mainly to Elizabeth but mostly to the Tudors, so willing to do Mary's bidding as well. Not an easy balancing act!
What's interesting is that this is one of the few books that paints Mary in a sympathetic light - not so much of the Bloody here. As with all historical fiction, the language and some of the details feel a bit too modern but overall this is a great read for people a little intimidated by Hilary Mantel's tomes.
ARC provided by publisher.