Sunday, 23 February 2014

Historical Fiction Reviews: 3 in 1

Young Eleanor, niece of King Edward II, is delighted with her marriage to Hugh le Despenser and her appointment as a lady-in-waiting to Queen Isabella's household. But before long, Eleanor realizes that her beloved Uncle Edward is not the mighty ruler his kingdom-or his queen-expected.

Hugh's unbridled ambition and his intimate relationship with Edward arouse widespread resentment, even as Eleanor remains fiercely loyal to her husband and to her king. However, her allegiance may cost her dearly.

My thoughts:
The book was interesting, but that is just that...it was the history itself that was interesting. Not the book.

For me it could have better. As it was now, it just did not know whether it was fiction or non-ficion. Everything had to be told, every little detail about everyone in the country. There was even a mention of something that would not happen in years. The characters could not imagine that, I do not want to know that either. We are not tellers of the future. So less of that, and more focus on characters. Without telling everything.

Still it was interesting to read about Eleanor de Clare.(even if she has TSTL moments). She married a man beneath her status cos the king told her to. Hugh was, well honestly I would have liked that he was portrayed even darker cos he was powerhungry. But I never felt we should see him as a bad man. We totally should have. And of course there is everyone else, nobles, royals. Plots, traitors, war, and a bunch of psychopaths really ;) I would NOT have wanted to be her.

Paperback, 499 pages
Published April 1st 2009 by Sourcebooks Landmark (first published July 25th 2005)
Own

A child born in the plague year of 1348, abandoned and raised within the oppressive walls of a convent, Alice Perrers refused to take the veil, convinced that a greater destiny awaited her. Ambitious and quick-witted, she rose above her obscure beginnings to become the infamous mistress of Edward III. But always, essentially, she was alone.... 

Early in Alice's life, a chance meeting with royalty changes everything: Kindly Queen Philippa, deeply in love with her husband but gravely ill, chooses Alice as a lady-in-waiting. Under the queen's watchful eye, Alice dares to speak her mind. She demands to be taken seriously. She even flirts with the dynamic, much older king. But she is torn when her vibrant spirit captures his interest...and leads her to a betrayal she never intended. 

My thoughts:
I do not really know what happened, it could have been growing all week. I was all come on, 600 pages? Why is that needed? Cos honestly nothing happened in the book.

I started to read, it felt ok, but then I started to skim and skimmed to the end. I could have worked through it and given it a good rating but it was a library book which means...I gave up and skimmed. I have too many books. I need awesome, if the library do not give me awesome I go all eh.

I am also not a fan of the this is me, the narrator, I am old now and telling my story. I want to live in the moment. I do not want the narrator as a old woman there with me at the same time looking back.

Paperback, 480 pages
Published 2012 by Mira Books
Library

Sadie Appleby has lived all her life in her small village. One night she is rudely awoken by her older and bolder sister, Ella, who has robbed her employer and is on the run. The girls flee their rural home of Westmorland to head for London, hoping to lose themselves in the teeming city. But the dead man's relatives are in hot pursuit, and soon a game of cat and mouse begins.

Ella becomes obsessed with the glitter and glamour of city life and sets her sights on the flamboyant man-about-town, Jay Whitgift. But nothing is what it seems - even Jay Whitgift.

Can Sadie survive a fugitive's life in the big city? But even more pressing, can she survive life with her older sister Ella?

My thoughts:
I wanted more from this one but it fell kind of flat for me.

First we got Ella who is a bitch. She robs her previous employer and goes to London to get pretty things and a man. I never liked her, I guess I was never meant to like her but I think she got off too easy.

Sadie could have been good, but she was just a mouse who should have found some courage and not let her sister walk all over her. First maybe she should have understood that robbing was a shitty idea.

The book takes place in London where they girls try to get by, but the whole on the run, making a new life was sort of dull.

Interesting premise, but not for me.

Cover
I prefer the other one 

Paperback, 304 pages
Published September 13th 2012 by Pan Macmillan
Own



42 comments:

  1. aww too bad they didn't really work out for you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh no, too had these didn't work for me. I did enjoy The Traitor's Wife although I agree she focuses more on history than story. The Gilded Lily was another I enjoyed. I haven't read anything by O,Brien but I do have one by her on my shelf. Happy Sunday!

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    Replies
    1. I have liked her other books but this one..noooo

      I have another by Swift so i hope that one is better

      Delete
  3. Bummer! I had The Traitor's Wife on my shelf for some time but I think I gave it away. I used to be SO into those kinds of books when I was younger but now, they don't appeal to me a much.

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    Replies
    1. I say good cos it was not good for me

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  4. Your 3-1 sounds unsatisfying. I hope whatever it is you're reading right now is a lot better than these.

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    Replies
    1. I saved all my crappy ones for this ;)

      Delete
  5. Sorry those books weren't any better.

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  6. I hate it when interesting historical settings are let down by bad stories!

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  7. Well it doesn't look like I will be picking up any of these anytime soon, especially the 600 pg one. Bumnmer!

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  8. Aww, I'm sorry none of these worked out for you! I love historical fiction, but I'll be sure to steer clear of these if I come across them. Thanks for such helpful reviews!

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    Replies
    1. I love it too but no luck with these..honestly ever since I read them I have stayed clear of his fic...hm, not good

      Delete
  9. I'm sorry these weren't good for you. Especially when you have long ones!

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  10. I loved The Traitor's Wife and I'm sorry it wasn't for you. I've been eyeing The Gilded Lily but I'm not sure about it.

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  11. Eeep, three washouts, well parts were interesting but really. Hope your next read rocks

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  12. But what were your thoughts on the other two covers?!

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    Replies
    1. boring, and prefer the other uk or us one

      Delete
  13. hmmm I confess I'm not sure, not really attracted.

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  14. Three books and three mehs - life sucks sometimes!

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  15. Bummer these didn't do it for you, I quite enjoyed The Gilded Lily but Anne O'Brien's have been hit and miss for me!

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    Replies
    1. The gilded lily had the most promise so dunno what went wrong there.

      But O'Brien, it was just...bleh

      Delete
  16. Oh well. I think I have the first on my shelf but I haven't been in a rush to read it. Guess I won't be.

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    Replies
    1. Sighs, and I can't recommend either

      Delete
  17. That does not sound good. Hope you read something amazing next time you pick up this genre. Question, did you ever read Jean Plaidy?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope, I have actually never read her

      Delete
  18. Too bad these didn't work for you. And gosh that brings me back, The Traitors Wife is one of the first books I got for review years ago.

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    Replies
    1. I have liked her other books but this one just fell short for me

      Delete
  19. 1. Sounds super good. But yeah...I wouldn't have wanted to be her. Kuddos to her and her loyalty...

    2. Poor chit. I can't imagine having everyone I know die due to the plague. You little skimmer you ;D

    3. Sorry it fell flat, it sounded good.

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    Replies
    1. Horrid time to be anyone.

      Skim ahoy! I had to, I totally had to.

      It was but...still not

      Delete
  20. Ah, Isabella, Edward, and Hugh. Their's was a fascinating history.

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  21. I remember liking The Traitor's Wife, but I read it so long ago, I don't remember the details. Except for the bad stuff that happened to Hugh. I'd never read anything about that period before, so that's probably why I was so interested.

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    Replies
    1. I do have the next one so hopefully I will like it better :/

      Delete

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