Use of cookies.

Use of cookies on this web site: For the Love of Books collects no personally identifiable data in cookies. However, a number of social media and search engine companies place tracking cookies without our consent or co-operation. If you wish to avoid tracking, please read our cookies policy, where you will find links to resources that will help you set your browser accordingly.
Show Cookies Policy
Accept & Continue
Join Mailing List
Search my 'blog
Find word or phrase...
Keyword
Find posts dated...
Date
25/04/2019: Forgotten Royal Women

Erin Lawless’s book ‘Forgotten Royal Women’ is not only a fascinating and insightful read, but it is also written in an entertaining style with a great blend of historical prose, unusual words and modern parlance.

It traces female historical characters from the dark ages through to Victorian times. It covers legendary figures from the near mythical Scottish ‘Scota’ to the tragic Princess Charlotte, who had she survived would have prevented the invention of the word Victorian.

The book covers Queens, lovers, mistresses and tragic mothers.

Scota’s story stems incredibly from Egypt and includes the potential origin of the ‘Stone of Destiny’ (this rock gets more than one mention in the book!) as being from Egypt. Her existence is still a subject of conjecture, and it’s not often that a UK royal history book has a commentary that pre dates Christianity.

In the story of Cartimandua, Erin entertains with her references and descriptions. When this Queen of the Brigantes takes a second husband whose names means ‘better in battle’, I loved the reference that for the queen he was ‘clearly better in other respects too…’ Interestingly it is suggested that the love triangle that surrounds her story might have given origin to the story of Arthur, Guinevere and Lancelot.

Edith Swannesha gets a noble and tragic mention who was the common law wife of one of my historical heroes Harold Godwinson. It is sad that history does not record what happened to her after the Norman invasion. But lineage can be traced from her to the current Queen through Edith’s daughter Gytha, meaning Queen Elizabeth II is Edith’s 29th great granddaughter.

Another touch of what I found to be an almost satirical use of English that entertained me was the story of Joanna Plantagenet. Erin describes how ‘it would have been totally inconceivable that a married pregnant woman be admitted to an Abbey’. Something in her story had clearly been very conceivable! Joanna was another tragic royal woman who died following child birth along with her child, much like the final tragic story of Princess Charlotte. Charlotte’s death, when she was the immediate heir to the throne, led to family expansion elsewhere to produce a new heir: Queen Victoria.

Writing royal history with its twists and turns in who accedes to the throne and from which house is difficult to commit to paper having read much on this subject. Erin has done a commendable job to try to allow the reader to follow these lines, and she has entertained along the way.

Good work, recommended read!

Reviewed by Bryan Lightbody,
For the Love of Books www.loveofbooks.co.uk
for Pen & Sword Books

See more news items in our blog.

Post a comment on this page.Click here to request Information on blog item 40
Share this story
Link to this story (copy/paste): https://www.loveofbooks.co.uk/page_32.php?pgenme=wiblog_solus&blogsel=40
 
share us on facebook
share us on twitter
share us on pinterest
share us with a friend
get us to call you back
Writer's 'blog

2019-09-04
Radio Show Sponsor

Most of you know I present Writer's Block
...More information...

Forthcoming Events

2019-11-18
Writer's Block Radio Show


Join me on Colne Radio every Monday from 6pm BST for a combination of music and conversation with literary types, covering just about every aspect of writing creatively
...More information...
Recent Tweets