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Roses Have Thorns: A Novel of Elizabeth I Paperback – April 9, 2013


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Howard Books; Original edition (April 9, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439183163
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439183168
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (82 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #118,884 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"In Roses Have Thorns Sandra Byrd has given the reader another amazing heroine to tell the intimate story of England's greatest queen, Elizabeth I. What a unique point of view and deeply moving story Helena von Snakenborg provides. Byrd is especially adept at blending political and private lives. This is a timeless women's friendship novel as well as a poignant love story to cherish—both the roses and the thorns." (Karen Harper, New York Times bestselling author of Mistress of Mourning)

"There is something golden about this tale of Elin, an eager young woman in a strange land, diligent in her duty but alive to love. A tale gracefully told, even as it renders the terrors of treachery that form the crucible of Elin's hard-won wisdom. A heartfelt story of loyalty, longing, life-long friendship, and the many seasons of the heart." (Barbara Kyle, author of The Queen’s Gamble and BloodBetween Queens)

"Beautiful prose and masterful research combine to bring this fascinating tale to life, treating the reader to fully realized characters and providing an original window in which we can view Elizabeth's court. Ms. Byrd's work will stand as an unforgettable contribution to Tudor fiction." (D.L. Bogdan, author of The Forgotten Queen)

"Scandalous gossip! Court intrigue! Forbidden romance! Roses Have Thorns is addictive reading--a guilty pleasure that will transport your heart to the edge of despair and, with a sigh, to the renewal of hope." (Serena Chase USA Today's Happy Ever After)

"The book spans nearly 24 years, and readers will be very caught up as the story unfolds and they see some of the familiar players of Elizabeth’s court through the eyes of a gentle and affectionate friend to the Queen. With this well written novel, rich in history and everyday court life during the Elizabethan period, I can now count Sandra Byrd as one of my favorite writers of historical fiction." (Historical Novel Society)

About the Author

Sandra Byrd is a noted author of historical fiction, including the first book in her Tudor series, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn. She lives near Seattle, Washington. Visit SandraByrd.com.

More About the Author

After earning her first rejection at the age of thirteen, bestselling author Sandra Byrd has now published more than forty books. Her adult fiction debut, Let Them Eat Cake, was a Christy Award finalist, as was her first historical novel, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn. To Die For was also named by Library Journal as a Best Books Pick for 2011 and The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr, was named a Library Journal Best Books Pick for 2012. Roses Have Thorns: A Novel of Elizabeth I published in April, 2013.

Sandra has also published dozens of books for tweens and teens.

A former textbook acquisitions editor, Sandra has published many nonfiction articles and books. She is passionate about helping new writers develop their talent and their work toward traditional or self publication. As such, she has mentored and coached hundreds of new writers and continues to coach dozens to success each year.

Please visit www.sandrabyrd.com to learn more, or to invite Sandra to your bookclub via Skype.

Customer Reviews

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As I said this is a historical novel and it is very well researched.
VicG
These books can be read as stand alone novels, but I do recommend all three of them as they are well written and highly entertaining.
Naida M.
Roses Have Thorns is the third and final novel in Sandra Byrd's "Ladies in Waiting" series.
Dawn Kinzer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Melanie on May 13, 2013
Format: Paperback
Roses Have Thorns, while not my favorite in Sandra Byrd's Ladies in Waiting series (that would be The Secret Keeper), was still a really good Tudor novel that I enjoyed reading.

I loved all the history in Roses Have Thorns and I learned some things about Elizabeth I and her lady's maids that I hadn't known prior to reading this book. It was a little hard for me to get into the story at first and at times I got a little confused about who was who (since the book covers a vast period of time and there were a lot of different characters). But when I got about halfway through Roses Have Thorns, I started to get really captivated by the story and the last few chapters were so, so good!

Elin's/Helen's story was fascinating. There were a lot of ups and downs in her life, and it was interesting to see how she responded to the things that happened and the choices she made. I loved the afterword in Roses Have Thorns. It was great to learn what parts of the story had truly happened in real life.

Overall, Roses Have Thorns was a great Tudor novel rich with historical facts. If you enjoy Tudor fiction, then I think you will like this book. I look forward to reading more of Sandra Byrd's novels.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book for my review. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Charity U on April 26, 2013
Format: Paperback
Oh, it was good! It was so much fun (and so interesting) to get to know Queen Elizabeth I a little better. I really did feel like I knew her pretty well by the end. And I love the cover too - more in person than online. The purple and gold are very stunning, and the entire trilogy looks so lovely all together on my shelf! Elin/Helena, the main heroine, is a lady in waiting to Elizabeth I and turned out to be a fascinating woman to "journey" with through this book, as she was telling the story herself (does that make sense?). I'm definitely sorry to see this series end - they are the best Tudor era fiction I've found. However, I do recommend them mostly for about age 16+ as they do occasionally deal with some more mature content - nothing explicit though.

The characters were all quite understandable and believable; perhaps the Queen most of all. At the beginning and end of the book are several informative family trees, plus an author's note to wrap everything up. Sandra obviously put an amazing amount of research into this! One thing that I came across was that towards the beginning (page 52), one of Elin's jobs was to warm the Queen's bed every night for her. Yes, that means Elin got in, lay there until it was warm, then got out right before the Queen went to bed. If I were Queen? I'd get a bed-warmer. SO HANDY for cold nights. Anyway, that's one thing that I've always rather wanted but never knew people did.

All in all, a great book where you'll learn history in a fascinating, memorable, and fun way!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Megan on April 29, 2013
Format: Paperback
Roses Have Thorns, the third installment of the Ladies in Waiting series, is actually the first book I have read by Sandra Byrd, but it won't be my last! This author's passion for the Tudor era is evident throughout the book and the research she must have done is phenomenal! I loved learning more about this time in history and about lesser-known people who were a part of Elizabeth I's court.

Though Roses Have Thorns spans many decades, the story is never dull or bogged down, but moves along at a very enjoyable pace. In fact, once I started it I hated having to put this book down, and so I finished it rather quickly - in a little over a day.

I highly recommend Roses Have Thorns to fans of historical fiction. I hope to be able to read the first two books in this series, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn and The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr, very soon; but, I don't think these books have to be read in order - especially if you already know about this period in British history - as each one is about a different queen.

***I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book - which I have done.***
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Debra Brown on May 13, 2013
Format: Paperback
Roses Have Thorns is the third of the Ladies in Waiting Tudor-era novels by Sandra Byrd. It introduces the reader to a Swedish historical woman, Elin von Snakenberg, or as she came to be known in England, Helena, Marchioness of Northampton. Through the story of Elin we come into the court of Elizabeth I where we are brought face to face with the carefully researched ups-and-downs and at times life-and-death intrigues of life for a queen who had grown up with an all too realistic fear for her own neck after her father ordered the beheading of her mother and her wary half-sister took the throne. Surely such a rose would have dangerous thorns as a cousin entered her land and was said to contend for her throne. Who around her could Elizabeth trust?

Byrd paints a sympathetic and likeable heroine from the start of the book as Elin must leave her fiance behind obviously entangled in a love affair with her sister as Elin travels to England attending a Swedish princess. A difficult, lengthy voyage and Danish interference cut off communication with her family. Love quickly finds her in England, however, with Lord Northampton, brother of the late Queen Kathryn Parr, and she comes to be the second most powerful woman in the land. Yet we see how Elin endured puzzling rejection and even near death for having brought along into Elizabeth's bedchamber a custom from her homeland.

Lovers of historical fiction will enjoy becoming better acquainted with numerous persons--the Swedish princess, many from Elizabeth's court and especially the not-well-known Elin from Sweden. Byrd won a fascinated readership with this choice of a lovely, young woman who would enchant an uneasy queen with her soothing massage and her discerning words spoken with a lilting accent.
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