I could not put this down. Fascinating historical fiction about the 2nd wife of Robert Dudley and cousin to Elizabeth I (and obviously rival for Sir Robert's affections). I was so entranced by the story that when I went to Warwick Castle, I stopped by the church to see the tombs of Lettice and Robert Dudley.
Despite being a fan of Jean Plaidy (Victoria Holt) and all things Elizabeth I, I could not get into this book. I know enough about the real life relationship between Lettice and Elizabeth (and Dudley) and when this book failed to captivate me within the first 100 pages, I decided not to finish it.
Good book. I've always liked Victoria Holt/Jean Plaidy's work.
I am a great Victoria Holt fan and this was one of my favorites.
Lettice Devereaux tells the tragic story of Elizabeth I and her love for two men - the Earl of Leicester and the Earl of Essex. One must move past the persona Lettice projects to see the essence of this tale. A vain woman who prides herself in her beauty, she falls in love with the queen's favorite, the Earl of Leicester, a womanizing, handsome and most ambitious man. The queen loves him madly but she loves England more and cannot bear to share her crown with anyone. Elizabeth adores her people and is, in turn, adored by them. Whenever she goes on progress she stops to talk with them. In contrast, she expects those at court to dance to her smallest whim. Lettice plots to ensnare the Earl and marries him in spite of his colorful reputation, and incurrs the queen's displeasure. The furious queen abolishes her from court while keeping the Earl by her side. As the Earl ages, he brings Lettice's son, the Earl of Essex, to court. When Leicester dies, Essex becomes the queen's favorite but he lacks the maturity and political acumen of Leicester which lead to his eventual downfall. I truly enjoyed this book. If you like historical fiction I believe that you will enjoy My Enemy the Queen.
book club edition. This novel (so aptly named) illustrates the life of Lettice, a cousin to Queen Elizabeth I, from the Queen's mother Anne Boleyn's side. At first the Queen dotes on Lettice, due largely in part because Elizabeth loves showering attention on relatives of her mother. However, Lettice soon finds herself in exhile from court after she secretly marries Elizabeth's favorite, Robert Dudley, Earl of Rochester.
Is Queen Elizabeth I too wily or too afraid to marry? Or is there a spoiler -- Lettice Devereaux -- in the royal romances? The marriage between this beautiful and tempestuous widow and Elizabeth's longtime favorite, the Earl of Leicester, can't have endeared Lettice to the queen.
Some years later, on Leicester's death, another courtier wins the queen's heart -- only to break it by secretly marrying someone else and then by plotting against the Crown. This soldier-poet, the Earl of Essex, is the son of Lettice and her first husband, Walter Devereaux.