Monday, July 15, 2013

Historical Fiction Book Tours Book Review: The Queen's Rivals w/Giveaway


US Publication Date: June 25, 2013
Kensington Publishing

Paperback; 384p

ISBN-10: 0758265999

UK Publication Date: September 12, 2013

Avon Publishing

ISBN-10: 1847563457

Book Blurb:
Their ambitions were ordinary, but they were born too close to the throne...

As cousins of history's most tempestuous queens, Ladies Jane, Katherine, and Mary Grey were born in an age when all of London lived beneath the Tower's menacing shadow. Tyrannized by Bloody Mary and the Virgin Queen, the sisters feared love was unthinkable —and the scaffold all but unavoidable...

Raised to fear her royal blood and what it might lead men to do in her name, Mary Grey dreads what will become of herself and her elder sisters under the reigns of Mary Tudor and Elizabeth I. On their honor, they have no designs on the crown, yet are condemned to solitude, forbidden to wed. Though Mary, accustomed to dwelling in the shadows, the subject of whispers, may never catch the eye of a gentleman, her beautiful and brilliant sisters long for freedoms that would surely cost their lives. And so, wizened for her years, Mary can only hope for divine providence amid a bleak present and a future at the whim of the throne — unless destiny gains the upper hand.

A gripping and bittersweet tale of broken families and broken hearts, courage and conviction, The Queen's Rivals recounts an astonishing chapter in the hard-won battle for the Tudor throne.

Please note this book will be published in the UK as THE FALLEN QUEEN by Emily Purdy.

Review: There are certain authors I know will always delight me when it comes to the Tudor Period. One of those authors is Brandy Purdy.

In this Tudor novel we are treated to the lives of the Grey sisters, Katherine, Jane and Mary.

Everyone knows of Jane...who was the 9 day Queen. She's written about quite a bit in historical fiction. What surprised me was that the voice of the story was the younger sister, Mary, who I didn't really know much about until reading this book.

Like all books in the Tudor period this one is filled with drama and a lot of emotion. A lot of emotion, especially once you reach the point where sister Jane is put on the thrown..and then cousin Mary takes it from her. As you see the sister's lives crumble because of their position in the line for the thrown of England, you have to feel sad for all of them. The lives of Jane and Kate were truly heartbreaking.

From the beginning Mary is a voice you get a huge amount of "feels" for. She's described as a dwarf (She stopped growing at 5 years of age) and a hunchback. Yet of all the Grey sister's she's the one that came out the best.

Brandy takes a few liberties with history, but it makes the story so much more powerful. I loved that the thee sisters were almost like The Three Musketeers, The Brilliant One (Jane), The Beautiful One (Kate) and The Beastly One (Mary).

I highly recommend this book to fans of the Tudor period, or those looking for a different story other than the usual players.

Rating: 5 flowers

About the Author

Brandy Purdy (Emily Purdy in the UK) is the author of the historical novels THE CONFESSION OF PIERS GAVESTON, THE BOLEYN WIFE (THE TUDOR WIFE), THE TUDOR THRONE (MARY & ELIZABETH), THE QUEEN'S PLEASURE (A COURT AFFAIR), and THE QUEEN'S RIVALS (THE FALLEN QUEEN). An ardent book lover since early childhood, she first became interested in history at the age of nine or ten years old when she read a book of ghost stories which contained a chapter about Anne Boleyn haunting the Tower of London. Visit her website at, you can also follow her, and her cat Tabby, via her blog at where she posts updates about her work and weekly book reviews.

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mamabunny13 said...

I would love to have been a fly on the wall in in Anne Boleyn's time.

Unknown said...

Without a doubt... Anne Boleyn.

traveler said...

Favorite would be Elizabeth 1. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

TIffany said...

I would have to say Elizabeth I. So many years to her reign, its hard to imagine what a day in her life must have been like. She fascinates me.

cyn209 said...

Definitely Elizabeth I!!!

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