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The Scarlet Lion (William Marshal, Book 2) Paperback – March 1, 2010

220 customer reviews
Book 3 of 5 in the William Marshal Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

William Marshal returns in this sequel to The Greatest Knight with the older and wiser William well settled with his wife, Isabelle de Clare, and their ever-growing brood. However, he is now in uneasy service to King John, who suspects William for his ties to John's late brother Richard I, but cannot openly despise the powerful earl's allegiance. Still, ever spiteful John systematically strips William of titles, power, honors, and even his son, Will, who the king demands as his squire. Then John dies suddenly, and William must take the rebellious kingdom in hand and assume the regency. Chadwick delivers another accomplished historical, albeit without the thrills of its predecessor. Like William, the story is too settled and comfortable to be as exciting as the story of the young knight on the rise, but the in-depth exploration of the intrigues of King John's court is riveting. Isabelle remains a powerful noblewoman and excellent match for William. This will be best appreciated by fans of Chadwick's other work or readers curious to learn more about medieval England. (Mar.)
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"Fans of historical fiction will devour this novel, appreciating the depth of research, flowing prose, eye for detail and feeling like you knew William Marshall." - Romance Junkies

"When Elizabeth Chadwick writes about history, you feel like you are there in the thick of it... A definite must read for any lover of history. " - The Long and Short of It

"The characters are brought to life. " - Historical Tapestry

"Graceful... elegantly sexy, realistic. " - HistoricalNovels.Info

"The Scarlet Lion is everything I look for in fiction: adventure, romance, intrigue, told through well developed characters and vivid descriptions of settings." - Thoughts From an Evil Overlord

"From the colors, scents, sounds, emotions of people, places and things you can't help but feel as if you are a bystander watching the entire story unfold right before your very eyes. " - Yankee Romance Reviewers

"Wonderful characters, fascinating history, and detailed beautiful writing." - Laura's Reviews

"Recommended for historical fiction lovers. " - Booksie's Blog

"The writing is just so good, the characters and places so real, it's happy and sad and just so well researched – it's exactly what a book of this genre should be." - She Read a Book

"Chadwick is very talented at bringing her characters and the Medieval world alive in the pages of her books. " - A Work in Progress
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 563 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark (March 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402229992
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402229992
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (220 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #183,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Elizabeth Chadwick is a best selling, award winning author of historical fiction. A born storyteller, her first novel The Wild Hunt won a Betty Trask Award in 1990. She has been four times shortlisted for the RNA Award in the UK for the best mainstream romantic novel. Her book The Scarlet Lion was selected as one of the top ten works of historical fiction of the decade by Richard Lee, founder of The Historical Novel Society.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

66 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Cameron-Smith TOP 1000 REVIEWER on February 11, 2008
Format: Audio Cassette
William Marshal steps out of the pages of history and, larger than life, provides us with an insight into the times in which he lived. This novel opens in 1197 and depicts the turbulent times around the reigns of King Richard I and King John.

While following the life of William and his wife Isabelle, we are treated to a finely depicted view of the politics, intrigue and events of medieval England and Ireland. The novel is multi-faceted: it enables us to relate to William and Isabelle as two human beings who needed to balance their own needs and those of their family with the code of honour and political constraints of the day. At the same time, the known historical facts are woven into the story in a way that breathes life into history and will have many readers wanting to know more about the actual events depicted.

And while those readers are learning more about the history, I have been provided with another hero worthy of my admiration.

Brava, Ms Chadwick! Few authors have ever made medieval history as interesting to me as you have.

Highly recommended.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Tamela Mccann TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 23, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Unable to wait for the American release, I had to pick up Elizabeth Chadwick's newest novel, The Scarlet Lion, from as soon as it was available. And I am so glad I did! This is one author who continues to give us quality historical fiction that will leave you breathless and eagerly awaiting her next venture.

Elizabeth Chadwick has given us a gift---the sequel to her outstanding novel, The Greatest Knight. The Scarlet Lion picks up the life of William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke and eventual Regent of England in the early 1200s. To say that this man was more than a mere knight would be an understatement of the first order, and would be a disservice to the writing skills Ms. Chadwick displays so well.

Where should I begin in describing this magnificent novel? Maybe I will start with William's accomplishments, all of which were almost unheard of for someone who had to make his own way in life. Or perhaps I should begin with the cast of characters who populate this tale, among them Richard the Lion Heart, King John of Magna Carta fame, and the young Henry III who was placed in the care of Marshal upon the death of his father. But starting with those would take away the heart of the novel: the uncommon relationship between William and his wife, Isabelle. William, in a time when women were basically chattel, cherished his wife and listened to her counsel. Ms. Chadwick has taken all of these historical facts and woven them into one grand tapestry that brings Marshal to life and inserts him into your heart, mind, and soul. Her research is impeccable, and her gift of phrase will make you want to slow down while reading so as to savor every word.

To those who are lovers of good fiction, this is one of the best and truly deserving of a widespread audience.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Misfit VINE VOICE on March 1, 2008
Format: Paperback
Historical fiction just doesn't get any better than this. This is a wonderful tale of one of the most honorable men to grace this earth, William Marshal and his true partner in all things, his wife Isabelle. The first novel, Greatest Knight, covered more of William Marshal's early life as a knight and courtier. This novel covers his life with Isabel and the dangers and terrors of living in the court of the King John, and then as regent for the young Henry III. I have to admit shedding more than a few tears at the last chapter, the end of William's life.

I have read all of this author's works that I can get my hands on and I am amazed at how consistly she is improving (not that the earlier works were poorly written at all). As always with Chadwick's books, the way she brings the medieval period to life in such a graceful and effortless way, be it the sights, sounds, smells, food, clothes and battles is just awesome. As quoted on some of her book jackets, the next best thing to time travel. Five stars.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Joe TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
English history is my personal esoteric interest, especially the period of the first Plantagenet monarchs: Henry II, Richard I (the Lionheart), John, and Henry III. Orbiting each of the four at one time or another was England's incomparable poster boy of feudal loyalty, William Marshal, who became 1st Earl of Pembroke. In addition to serving the monarchs mentioned, Marshal also pledged vassalage to Henry II's queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine, and the Young King Henry, the eldest son of Henry II and Eleanor acknowledged and crowned as the heir and future king while his father was still in his prime and ruling. Of course, William pledged his loyal service to only one at a time as honorable circumstance or invitation called upon him to do so, and that occasionally made it a dodgy walk along the precipice considering the notable dysfunctionality of Henry II's family.

The SCARLET LION is Elizabeth Chadwick's sequel to The Greatest Knight. The book pair is a supremely engaging work of historical fiction about medieval England for any casual or serious student of the time and the 1st Earl of Pembroke.

William was born in 1146 and died at age 73. The forty-three chapters plus Epilogue of THE GREATEST KNIGHT span the period from the summer of 1167, when Marshal was a newly minted young knight in the household of Sir Guillaume de Tancarville, Chamberlain of Normandy and a distant kinsman, to May 1194, when William, accompanied by his heiress wife, Isabelle de Clare, and their two sons and daughter, embark by ship for Normandy with Marshal's lord at the time, King Richard.
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