The Kingmaker’s Daughter by Philippa Gregory
The Fourth book in ‘The Cousin’s War’ series, this novel follows the events of the War of the Roses and is from the perspective of Anne Neville, daughter of the Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, nicknamed ‘The Kingmaker’. Lacking daughters, Warwick uses his daughters as pawns in his ever constant battle to try and control the King of England. Anne grows up around the court of Edward IV and his wife, Elizabeth Woodville. But when Edward follows his own rule as opposed to Warwick’s, Warwick changes sides in an attempt to take power and Anne finds herself married to the enemy of York, married into the Lancaster family.After a devastating battle where York wins she is left widowed and fatherless and is left hopelessly alone against the queen, the enemy of her sister and her mother in a sanctuary, all seems lost until she finds solace in the kings brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester. She seizes her chance of freedom by marrying him in secret and coming back to the English court. But danger plagues her footsteps and she fears the wrath of the queen and the ambition of her husband.
Each book in the series is from the different perspective of a different woman hence knowing ‘their side’ so to speak and having developed an attachment to Elizabeth Woodville and Jaquetta Rivers in previous novels, reading from the perspective of their enemy was difficult. I struggled to find any attachment to her even though she was just a pawn of her father at first. But toward the end, I couldn’t help but feel attached to her. (Spoiler but technically this book is based on fact…so technically not a spoiler) When she lost her son and her husband started to court the daughter of her enemy, Elizabeth Woodville, the former queen and she felt usurped by the younger, more beautiful woman. Considering my own… issues, this struck a chord within me as I could empathise with her.
This book wasn’t as good as the past novels in the series but it was interesting seeing the characters from former novels in a whole new perspective – rather than Elizabeth being the alluring woman taking power for her family and fighting for the safety and continuation of her line, she is instead a deadly enemy. This is unique and refreshing but unfortunately due to the fact it was based on life events – and some events were spaced years apart – it does become a tad repetitive at times. So although not as engrossing, it is certainly a good insight into the life of Anne Neville.
- Video Interview: The White Queen’s Philippa Gregory & Max Irons (Julio 16) (maxironsmexico.wordpress.com)
- The White Queen by Philippa Gregory: Book Review (windsbird.wordpress.com)
- “The Kingmaker’s Daughter” – Best So Far in Gregory’s Cousins War Series (thehistorylady.wordpress.com)
- The Kingmaker’s daughter by Philippa Gregory. (thebookgobbler.wordpress.com)
- Philippa Gregory: ‘I was a rebel at school. I only got an E in history’ (telegraph.co.uk)