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Rivals for the Crown Paperback – July 24, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 414 pages
  • Publisher: Gallery Books; Original edition (July 24, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416509925
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416509929
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,581,708 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The Scottish Highlands have rarely been more inviting...."
-- The Dallas Morning News --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

About the Author

Kathleen Givens is the author of the critically acclaimed historical novels Kilgannon, The Wild Rose of Kilgannon, The Legend, and The Destiny. She is the recipient of the Romance Writers of America's coveted RITA Award for Best Historical Romance. Her new novel of the Scottish Highlands, Rivals for the Crown, is forthcoming in paperback from Pocket Books. An ardent traveler, reader, and student of history, she lives in Southern California, but is always ready to roam the Highlands. Visit her website at www.kathleengivens.com.

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Customer Reviews

Truly one of the best historical romance writers, her books are so wonderful to read.
Brenda M Moore
The characters are so well-drawn as to feel real and comfortably familiar, making the time period come to life.
Shelley Reade
With the historical conflict as a background, the love story is riveting and the characters leap off the page.
dede

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 52 people found the following review helpful By M. Scovell on August 29, 2007
Format: Paperback
Once again, Kathleen Givens proves herself a gifted writer of historical fiction with Rivals for the Crown. I like a good romance, but a burning bedroom scene on every other page is a bit wearing and Givens doesn't do that. Instead she creates believeable characters and a true love story within real history. You never find yourself thinking, they'd never do that or speak that way with her books. A ripping good yarn within historical fact (and she does her research well), I highly reccommend this book and the first book in this series, On a Highland Shore. I can't wait for the next one!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Beverley Strong on February 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
In 1290, trouble begins between Scotland and England when the 7 year old girl Queen of Scotland dies, and two rival factions, those of John Balliol and Robert Bruce, vie for the title of King of Scotland. England's Edward 1, known as Longshanks, seizes the opportunity to step in and demand that whichever candidate wins, he would be subservient to Edward and would rule, only as his vassal. English soldiers flood into Scotland, plundering, raping, destroying and abusing the Scots, until a rebel faction under the lead of William Wallace, known as Braveheart, manages to unite the warring clans, to defeat the English. Isabel deBurke was a lady in waiting to Edward's Queen Eleanor but was threatened and menaced by a corrupt and venal bishop, who sought her compliance by expelling the Jewish family of her childhood friend, Rachel deAnjou. Valiant Highlanders, Rory MacGannon and Kieran MacDonald, who love the girls, are thrown into many dangerous situations while trying to keep the girls safe at the same time as they are fighting the English. It's a great read for lovers of Scottish history.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By dede on November 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book was spectacular, ranking right up there with Phillipa Gregory. With the historical conflict as a background, the love story is riveting and the characters leap off the page. I could hardly put the book down--Givens is a master storyteller. If you haven't read On a Highland Shore, the prequel to this, be sure and get it too. They are both truly excellent historical sagas.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Meggie on December 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
I couldn't wait to get this sequel to On a Highland Shore. And I liked it, but it seemed like a lot happened between the two books, particularly with Davey and Nell, that was referred to, and I kept thinking I must have missed a book, because I had no idea what they were talking about. I mean, one of the things I was looking forward to reading about was the whole Davey rescue thing, and I must admit, I was confused and a bit annoyed. It felt a bit choppy throughout, but still definitely a good read.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Shelley Reade on September 19, 2007
Format: Paperback
The characters are so well-drawn as to feel real and comfortably familiar, making the time period come to life. Isabel and Rachel are both incredibly strong women and the author offers a compelling portrait of a lasting female friendship. Plenty of court intrigue, a truly stomach-turning bad guy, heart-stopping conflicts, and a burning romance will keep you on the edge of your seat. Beautifully written, gripping historical fiction.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Laurel on September 20, 2007
Format: Paperback
Rivals For The Crown was an intense and riveting saga depicting just a piece of Scotland's tormented history and battle over the land. Kathleen Givens has a way of bringing the reader into the story and keeping you there she pulls no niceties as she tells the tale of these four people caught between two countries and loyalties. In particular the two female characters Rachel and Isabele endured personal tragedy and torment that saw both of these ladies forever changed as the novel concluded. Rachel in particular questions everything that she holds so dear. While novels depicting William Wallace in them have been told before, Kathleen Givens used him as a plot point to tell the story of people around him whom his plotting and scheming across Scotland in the hopes of saving her affected. The novel made me cry, terribly angry at the injustice of it all and finally smile as all characters overcame their battles and personal torment with heavy hearts but able to move forward and start anew in some cases start anew again to an uncertain future. Rivals For The Crown is a novel that historical enthusiasts will enjoy and read again.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By BookLover on June 13, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is a sequel of sorts to Givens' On a Highland Shore but a generation later. Standing alone, its a well-told historical fiction (more history, less romance) about the turbulent times of Scotland in the late 1200s. There are many wonderful characters, who you can't help but love, whose lives are intertwined. Aside from the major characters, author introduces us to "Braveheart's" William Wallace. If you've read Gabaldon's Outlander (and you really should), you will see many parallels which even if not original, are still well done. There will not be a book about Highland Shore's Davey and Nell (due to author's death), but we are given plenty of facts to fill the gaps. This is not a quick beach read. There is much history, brutal scenes not for the faint hearted and a lot of heartbreak. It is also a beautifully told story about the power of friendship, love and devotion.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on August 12, 2007
Format: Paperback
In 1290 Isabel de Burke and Rachel de Anjou have been best friends since they met as children. Although they vowed forever and still love one another as sisters, their friendship seems over as King Edward I decreed that all Jews must leave immediately. Rachel accompanied by her parents and sister leave England for Berwick where they buy an inn; at the same time Isabel becomes a lady-in-waiting to Queen Eleanor.

When Scotland's preadolescent queen dies while traveling to claim her throne, rivals John Balliol and Robert Bruce wage a civil war, which fits nicely into the plans of King Edward I to annex Scotland. Highlander Kieran MacDonald arrives at the de Anjou inn where he is meets and wants Rachel. However, he is fighting with Rory MacGannon to keep the English from ruling over Scotland so has no time for his heart's desire. Soon Isabel and Rachel reunite with the former and Rory attracted to each other. The two female friends are caught in the intrigue between England and Scotland and must decide between love for the Highlanders and love for England.

RIVALS FOR THE CROWN is a stupendous complex historical romance with the focus on the era. The epic saga uses the love between Rachel and Kieran, and Isabel and Rory to showcase the impact of war and royal intrigue on individuals as the two couples must make difficult choices that mean sacrifice of something cherished (love of country vs. beloved). Few authors can rival Kathleen Givens skill of transporting her audience so much so readers will feel they are along side the key cast members as late thirteenth century Scotland and to a lesser degree England comes alive once again (see the previous tale ON A HIGHLAND SHORE) in her wonderful novel.

Harriet Klausner
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