Setting: England, 1258
Sensuality Rating: 6
Loyalties collide in New York Times bestselling author Virginia Henley's The Marriage Prize. Henley demonstrates her much vaunted command of historical detail in this romantic tale set in the midst of the royal intrigue of King Henry III's court. Henley's reliance on actual characters in large part contributes to the realism and magnetism of the growing relationship between feisty Rosamond Marshall, a royal ward, and Rodger de Leyburn, Prince Edward Plantagenet's powerful steward. The pair was betrothed five years earlier when Rosamond was only twelve, but Rosamond rebels against marrying a man she doesn't know to further others' political agendas.
When Rodger pledges to woo her, Rosamond finds herself indulging in torrid fantasies of the dynamic knight who would be her husband. Caught up in the struggle for the throne between Prince Edward and Rosamond's beloved guardian, the warrior Simon de Montfort, who is leading a revolt among England's barons, Rosamond must come to terms with her feelings for the sensual man who has pledged his life and his loyalty to Prince Edward and his troth to her. Henley fashions a fascinating tale of the kind of love that legends are made of! --Alison Trinkle
Rosamond Marshal, heiress and the ward of Eleanor de Montfort, sister of King Henry III of England, has felt secure with her adopted family ever since the de Montforts took her in at age 12 and arranged for a good marriage to an English knight so her future would be secure. Five years later, Sir Rodger de Leyburn, steward to Prince Edward, comes for his bride. Rosamond is frightened by the dark and virile knight but eventually agrees to the arranged marriage as a way of paying back her adopted family for all their kindness. Just as she starts to trust her husband, England is torn by a civil war. Rodger supports Prince Edward, while Rosamond's guardians lead the 1259 insurrection. Her loyalty is torn and she must decide whom to trust. This, the third of a Plantagenet trilogy, following The Falcon and the Flower
(1989) and The Dragon and the Jewel
(1991), is Henley at her best--a lusty medieval tale full of battles and romance sure to please her fans and introduce historical readers to her delightfully bawdy romances. Patty EngelmannCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved