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Topic: The Sunne in Splendour - Book 4 Discussion

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Subject: The Sunne in Splendour - Book 4 Discussion
Date Posted: 3/30/2010 9:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
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This thread is for discussion of Book 4 of the novel.

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 11:07 AM ET
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I finished the book last night- wonderful as I expected it would be.  As a "bad Richard" person I do think Ms Penman made a really good case for the Duke of Buckingham being responsible for the deaths of the two Princes in the tower.  As one of the characters said at the end he had both motive and opportunity.  I kept waiting to hear "A horse, a horse.  My kingdom for a horse" though!  The author seemed to be inferring that Richard was ill at the end of his life possibly with consumption he had caught from his wife.  Did anyone else feel that way too?

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 1:16 PM ET
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Cheryl,   I think he was dead from grief before he road in to battle!



Last Edited on: 4/8/10 1:20 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/8/2010 2:19 PM ET
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I haven't finished yet, but as I recall from prior reading, I thought he was just thoroughly run down, physically, mentally, emotionally, to the point of illness.

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 2:59 PM ET
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I agree, he'd lost his will to live based on the losses he'd been through. 

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 4:26 PM ET
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 I am not to the end yet but IIRC Richard's loss is the last time the "kingship" is lost on the battlefield.

Date Posted: 4/12/2010 4:13 PM ET
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Well, you might count Charles I.  He didn't lose his life on the battlefield, but he lost his throne, and was later executed for "high treason". An odd notion, that the king could commit treason ... against ... himself? 

I'm just starting section 4.  Section 3 closes with Edward's death and I can't continue right now.  I know from prior readings how it all falls apart.  I liked Edward, despite his flaws and failings, and with loyalty being one of the traits I most admire in people, I'm quite fond of Richard, too.  I just don't have the stomach for this ending now.



Last Edited on: 4/12/10 10:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/12/2010 10:13 PM ET
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In three readings I just can not read the battle scene, I can't watch Richard die. It is the same with the battle scenes in other Penman novels, Evesham in  "Falls The Shadow and the death Of Llewellyn the Last in the Reckoning. Though I finally did read Llewellyn's death scene, it took me two days to read the few pages.

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 9:27 AM ET
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I started Book 4 this morning.  It is indeed painful watching it all fall apart, but I'd forgotten how well SKP balanced painful moments with good ones within the story. It's bearable.



Last Edited on: 4/13/10 9:27 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/13/2010 9:41 AM ET
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I too just started Book 4, and fortunately I am prepared for things to fall apart and for Richard to die, but of course I am not looking forward to it.  I feel horrible for him and Anne.  I think Richard lived his life just trying to do the right thing and being supportive to his brother, with no illusions or desire to be king himself until it was thrust upon him.  It's unfortunate that he's faced with so many truly unresolvable issues and probably lacks the "guile" and some other qualities necessary to really be a good leader.  I think he would've made an excellent king had he not inherited a throne set on nothing but problems. I guess he can thank his brother Edward for that.  LOL!

And Buckingham was certainly some piece of work.  He was just executed, and when I left off last night, Richard was having the discussion with Buckingham's wife wherein she confides that she had a very strong suspicion that her husband had the princes killed. Too bad it's doubtful that even if she shouts that information from the London rooftops, it's not going to quell the suspicion against Richard.

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 10:03 AM ET
Member Since: 3/23/2008
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So many of us had the same feeling- knowing how it is going to end you still have a hard time reading about it!!

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 10:28 AM ET
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You really have to wonder what the HELL Edward thought he was doing, letting his oldest son be raised so far from court, by Anthony Woodville.  I'm sure he figured to bring him to court by age 14 or so, and start teaching him and helping him find his way amoungst all the conflicting interests.  But to leave him so isolated all through his childhood, so that he didn't even really know his own siblings.  That's just nuts. 

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 2:15 PM ET
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Sharla, that was the practice at that time, to keep the heir from the corrupting influences at court. His son was Prince of Wales after all, perhaps it was a hold over from Edward I subjugation of the Welsh.  Plus Ludlow was home turf for the York family. He couldn't trust George to raise his son, and he needed Richard's talent in the North.  So let his Uncle Woodville do it, keep Elizabeth happy and his son out of George's clutches.  To bad Rutland died, things would have been so different.

ETA Anthony Woodville was a good choice he was a scholar, and it would seem the least objectionable choice.



Last Edited on: 4/13/10 2:17 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/13/2010 3:10 PM ET
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SKP portrayed Anthony as the most ... reasonable of the lot, shall we say.

I'm well aware that boys of their class weren't raised at home, not passed age 7- ish.   But it seems like Edward had all his kids at court EXCEPT his heir. 

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 5:37 PM ET
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The girls were left to Elizabeth to raise.   Richard Duke of York was married  at 4 to Anne the Duke of Norfolk's daughter she was 5.  So was he then being raised in the Duke of Norfolk's household,  while his brother was being raised at Ludlow? 

Date Posted: 4/13/2010 7:51 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2008
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Okay, can I ask a dumb question? 

K, I will.

Why do you suppose SKP entitled the book The Sunne In Splendour.  Wasn't that Edward's banner/insignia/coat of arms/whatever?  (BTW, I looked on Wikipedia, and I can't figure out why they don't show Edward's when they show plenty of other monarchs' coats of arms.)  Obviously Edward factored very heavily into this book, but it truly was a novel about Richard.  Why did she choose this title?



Last Edited on: 4/13/10 7:52 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/14/2010 4:38 AM ET
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I think he only used the Sunne in Splenour until he was crowned.  Maybe it was a battle flag more than an hereldic device?

 

England Arms 1405.svg 1461 - 1470 King Edward IV restored the arms of King Henry IV.
Date Posted: 4/14/2010 6:40 AM ET
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Shelley I also found this.  http://www.library.phila.gov/medieval/badge.htm

This is the another  page of this artical very interesting. http://www.library.phila.gov/medieval/banners.htm



Last Edited on: 4/14/10 7:53 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 4/14/2010 10:56 AM ET
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Letty - Interesting, thanks!  Also a bit confusing.  LOL!  However, your response made me think on my own question.  It reminded me of how the Sunne In Splendour badge/banner/whatever came about - the day Edward won the battle (was it Towton?) and the three suns appeared in the sky, which, of course, they took as an omen. Maybe SKP viewed that as a pivotal point in the story of the Yorks.  Edward for sure, but eventually including Richard.  After all, had Edward not risen to power, Richard probably wouldn't have eventually either. So perhaps SKP chose the title "The Sunne In Splendour" since that is really where Richard's story begins. 

Date Posted: 4/14/2010 10:59 AM ET
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Shelley, it was the Battle at Mortimer Cross.

Date Posted: 4/14/2010 11:02 AM ET
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Oh, Just saw on SKP facebook page that today is the anniversary of the Battle of Barnett,  R3's trial by fire and Warwick and John Neville's deaths.

Date Posted: 4/14/2010 11:16 AM ET
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Speaking of John Neville, does anyone know, did he really wear York's colors under his armour?  That's just gut-wrenching. 



Last Edited on: 4/14/10 11:16 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/14/2010 11:29 AM ET
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Thanks Letty, that was interesting.  I too thought John Neville wearing the York colors under his armour to be heartbreaking.  I hope it was true...sigh.

Date Posted: 4/14/2010 12:42 PM ET
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I decided to do a quick internet search to see if I could find the answer.  It's grounded in a written record. 



Last Edited on: 4/14/10 12:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 4/14/2010 12:46 PM ET
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Sharla, I just posted the question on SKP facebook page, she isn't on line right now she said that she is busy with R1 and his first blood letting at the moment, but had been reminded of the significants of the today's date.   She usually answers questions or one of the other followers do if they know the answer.



Last Edited on: 4/14/10 12:47 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
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