Philippa Gregory is one of my favorite authors, but every book seems to have some paranormal or "magic" element. This book was o.k., but her emphasis on sexual perversion cheapened her as a writer in my eyes. This one is Medieval witchcraft combined with kinkey sex. In all her books she shows how powerless women in times gone by were to the whims of their husbands, their rulers, and the powerful men who made the rules of the era. If sex sells, then she must have made a bundle on this book. Genny
Bizarre, bizarre read! As a huge Gregory fan, I was actually uncomfortable at times reading this one. I can't recommend it. I've had a hard time finding anyone who actually really enjoyed this one.
This book is set in England around the time of Henry VIII's ousting of Queen Catherine for Anne Boleyn. In that respect, it almost goes along with Gregory's "Other Boleyn Girl" series of books. Alys has been raised by a witch, to whom she was abandoned at birth. Despite her inherent power, she wishes for something more than the dirty hovel in which she was raised, and joins a convent at a young age. When the convent is burned by the lords, she escapes and winds up back at her hovel, where she is kidnapped by the lord's cruel son in order to serve as a healer to the ailing old lord. Despite her disdain for the young lord, she finds him attractive, and indeed finds castle life a good deal more attractive than her childhood home. In the course of securing her place in the castle, she reverts to her old ways (witchcraft) and must tread a fine line between relative comfort, her social status, and the stake. This was a good read, and one that lovers of historical fiction can't miss with. The "witchcraft" portrayed smacks a little of Haitian voodoo practices, but what do I know about medieval witchcraft? (Ans: Nothing.) This was a fun one, even though this book is no exception to Gregory's uncanny knack for writing completely unsympathetic characters.
This book was very odd. I usually like Philippa Gregory, but I wish I had skipped this book.
I was a bit dissapointed in this book.. I found it very predictable. The story was interesting, but I found it a slow read, not something I had to keep picking up to see what was going to happen next, just something I felt compelled to finish. I was glad I read it, but also was glad when I finished it..