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Book Review of Captive Queen: A Novel of Eleanor of Aquitaine

Captive Queen: A Novel of Eleanor of Aquitaine
kopsahl48 avatar reviewed on + 181 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1

This novel covers the life of Eleanor of Aquitaine. She was a very head strong queen. Her first marriage to King Louis VII of France ended in a divorce leaving Louis very bitter (which is very clear throughout the story). Eleanor did have various affairs during this marriage, one of which was a man named Gregory, her future father-in-law. Gregory's son, Henry of Anjou (Henry II) is destined to be the next King of England. Eleanor falls immediately in lust and him likewise. Their love affair is full of passion and leads to many children. But like many marriages, it starts to unravel due to greed, paranoia and adultery. Eleanor believe their marriage was going to be a partnership in all ways including in the ruling of England. Henry has other ideas and is very power hungry. He even plays games with his children causing them to fight amongst themselves and against him. During her marriage to Henry, Eleanor never thought about having an affair and thought Henry was just as faithful (and if you know anything about this time period, you know he wasn't). When she is confronted with Henry's fair Rosamond, Eleanor is absolutely devastated. It really was heartbreaking to read. It is amazing how back then a man could have many affairs and not be blamed but if a women is even suspected of it, it is treason and the punishment is usually death.

All in all this was a wonderful read. One criticism that I have is once the story got to Eleanor's long imprisonment I thought the book started to read very much like a history book. It seemed to jump from one scene to another with not much story weaved in between.

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