Narrator: Catherine Harvey
Genres: Adult, Historical, Literary, Royalty
Oh, dear reader! I’m so excited to be sharing this book with you today! When I learned this book was on tour with TLC book tours I asked to be on the tour straight away! A strong woman, the matriarch of the Tudor dynasty, who must weather the storms of her times? Oh HELLZ YES!!!!! So who is this woman, you ask, dear reader? Allow me to introduce you to Catherine de Valois, The Agincourt Bride…..
THE AGINCOURT BRIDE
by Joanna Hickson
Pub. Date: January 3rd 2013 by HarperCollins
The epic story of the queen who founded the Tudor dynasty, told through the eyes of her loyal nursemaid. Perfect for fans of Philipa Gregory.
When her own first child is tragically still-born, the young Mette is pressed into service as a wet-nurse at the court of the mad king, Charles VI of France. Her young charge is the princess, Catherine de Valois, caught up in the turbulence and chaos of life at court.
Mette and the child forge a bond, one that transcends Mette’s lowly position.
But as Catherine approaches womanhood, her unique position seals her fate as a pawn between two powerful dynasties. Her brother, The Dauphin and the dark and sinister, Duke of Burgundy will both use Catherine to further the cause of France.
Catherine is powerless to stop them, but with the French defeat at the Battle of Agincourt, the tables turn and suddenly her currency has never been higher. But can Mette protect Catherine from forces at court who seek to harm her or will her loyalty to Catherine place her in even greater danger?
Joanna Hickson became fascinated with history when she studied Shakespeare’s history plays at school. However, having taken a degree in Politics and English she took up a career in broadcast journalism with the BBC, presenting and producing news, current affairs and arts programmes on both television and radio. Now she writes full time and has a contract with Harper Collins for three historical novels. The Agincourt Bride is the first. She lives in Scotland in a 200 year old farmhouse and is married with a large extended family and a wayward Irish terrier.
Where you can find Joanna
As I expected, this book was a tour de force of historical fiction. Told from the view point of Catherine’s nursemaid and closest ally, Guillamette, we see Catherine grow from a lovely, but severely neglected princess in the French court to beautiful yet tightly controlled pawn of those who seek to control the court in her father’s illness. Caught between the machinations of her mother, her brother, the Duke of Burgundy and Henry V, her fortunes sail precariously among them all.
I loved the detail with which Joanna Hickson’s tale is told, pulling the reader instantly into the era in a lush and vibrant way. I felt like I walked next to Guillamette and Catherine through this story. Experiencing the highs and lows of their lives, the reader is swept into history. It makes the time period come to life in very real way.
Also, the story is so universal. Catherine is a young girl facing serious challenges. A severely neglected childhood with a party girl mother and a crazy father. She longs for a connection with her family, particularly her youngest brother but is continually isolated because of how it serves those who seek to use her as a pawn in their petty squabbles. And then she finds she has a suitor: the gallant, powerful, relentless Henry V. He’s gorgeous and fierce and he’s enthralled by Catherine’s grace and beauty. They’re a power couple in the making. If only Catherine’s family would get out of the way and let them be a couple.
Bottom line, this book was completely engrossing. When it ended I was surprised, because there was so much more I wanted to learn about Catherine’s life. Fortunately, there’s a second book, The Tutor Bride, which was previously released and will be re-released by HarperCollins next year! Keep your fingers crossed for another audiobook!!
This book is utterly engrossing and absolutely enthralling! You’ll be rooting for Catherine all the way and dying to find out what happens next!
As I mentioned above, The Agincourt Bride by Joanna Hickson is on tour right now! Check out the other stops on the tour!
- Monday, August 18th: Broken Teepee
- Wednesday, August 20th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
- Thursday, August 21st: Bewitched Bookworms
- Monday, August 25th: Fuelled by Fiction
- Wednesday, August 27th: Ageless Pages Reviews
- Friday, August 29th: nightlyreading
- Monday, September 1st: 100 Pages a Day … Stephanie’s Book
- Tuesday, September 2nd: Bibliophilia, Please
- Wednesday, September 3rd: Back Porchervations
- Thursday, September 4th: Time 2 Read
- Friday, September 5th: Kritters Ramblings
- Friday, September 5th: Peeking Between the Pages
- Thursday, September 11th: Svetlana’s Reads and Views
You can find out all about the tour on Joanna’s TLC page too!