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Queen Without a Crown (Ursula Blanchard Mystery at Queen Elizabeth I's Court) Hardcover – January 1, 2012

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Queen Without a Crown (Ursula Blanchard Mystery at Queen Elizabeth I's Court) + A Rescue For A Queen (An Ursula Blanchard Elizabethan Mystery) + Queen's Bounty (Ursula Blanchard Mysteries)
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Product Details

  • Series: Ursula Blanchard Mystery at Queen Elizabeth I's Court
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Creme de la Crime (January 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780290144
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780290140
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 1.1 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,544,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Ursula Blanchard, lady-in-waiting and spy extraordinaire, returns in a new Elizabethan mystery steeped in suspense and historical detail. In addition to her duties as a Lady of the Bedchamber to her half sister, Queen Elizabeth, she also undertakes certain delicate missions for the Crown. Despite her marriage to Hugh Stannard, there is no escaping into private life for Ursula. On assignment in the north to ferret out a group of rebel noblemen intent on rescuing and reinstating the imprisoned Mary, Queen of Scots, she is also privately commissioned by Mark Easton, Lord Sussex’s envoy, to solve a 20-year-old murder. As Ursula delves deep into the past to solve a tricky cold case, political passions in the present threaten to boil over. The worthy Ursula is an estimable heroine, and Buckley’s confident mastery of sixteenth-century British history lends an air of authenticity to her cleverly spun adventures. --Margaret Flanagan

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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See all 10 customer reviews
This is a good addition to the series.
Das Englisch von Königin
All in all, the uprising had a very small part in the story, although Anne's duplicity was brought to the fore in a chilling manner when she and Ursula collided.
I was pleasantly surprised at how entertaining this novel was with intrigue, history and well drawn characters.
Carole A. Key

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By T. Harper on January 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After reading the other Ursula Blanchard mysteries when they were released many years ago, I thought the series was finished. Truthfully, Buckley could have stopped with the last book, but I'm happy that she didn't. I was interested to see how the characters had changed, but they really haven't. The mystery itself is twofold - a love interest challenged by an old murder, and of course Elizabethan era intrigue. I was mostly interested in the love interest and old poisoning angle. It was a very good weekend read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Judith Starkston on March 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Fiona Buckley's latest installment in her Ursula Blanchard mystery series set in Elizabeth I's court, Queen without a Crown, will please her fans. (The author's real name is Valerie Anand, and the first in the series is To Shield the Queen, 1997.) Ursula is back in action on a double mission, one from Elizabeth and a private one that Ursula hopes will reap the funds needed to save her husband's estate from debtors. Once again champions of Mary of Scotland are rebelling in order to put a Catholic queen back on the throne, and Ursula is sent to identify where the remaining rebelling nobles are hiding after a successful suppression of the revolt. She will find more than Elizabeth I bargained for. But Ursula is also in search of evidence to prove the innocence of a young man's father, dead some twenty-three years. Mark Easton wishes to marry but the accusation that his father poisoned a rival years ago and then took his own life hangs over him as a shadow of disgrace so that his love's family view him as unacceptable. How to solve a mystery so lost in time? It seems hopeless from the beginning and only the dire need to save Hawkswood, the childhood estate of Hugh Stannard, her husband, gives Ursula any motivation to try such a doomed project.

Buckley has added some new engaging characters to the mix: Trewlany, an old friend of Brockley's from his days fighting for King Henry, whose creativity in adversity will hold your attention, a curmudgeonly old woman with a tendency toward larceny who shall remain nameless so as not to spoil the plot, and Lady Ann of Northumberland, a striking example of a woman warrior. Otherwise the familiar formula of the previous books in the series is deployed with the usual attention to historical precision, moral dilemmas, and suspenseful action.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By prairie woman on February 29, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Ursula Blanchard would probably fit into the 21st century. She's a very independent resourceful woman who can ride well, use a knife, and is very resourceful when confronting her foes. She's a member of Queen Elizabeth I court and besides sitting around and embroidering and sharing gossip, she is the Queen's right hand lady when it comes to venturing into parts unknown to protect Elizabeth's interests and most importantly, her life! There's always these plots afoot to eject Elizabeth from her throne mostly from the supporters of Mary Queen of Scotland who is now imprisoned in a castle in the northernmost part of England. Ursula is asked to investigate these recent rumors of a rebellion against Elizabeth. Also the main story is trying to solve a murder that happened twenty years ago so that a young man may marry the woman he loves. Ursula is torn because her husband Hugh is ill and she's afraid to leave him. On the other hand they are in danger of losing their land because of some previous investments Hugh made that failed. Ursula ultimately is up to both tasks and ventures out on horseback to uncover both mysteries. She of course meets danger but is lucky to have Brockley, her servant and his friend to come to her rescue. What is amazing about these stories is not just the political issues of the times but the lower life expectancy of people. It makes for a more complicated story because women and men have been married several times because their spouses have died from childbirth, plague, accidents, and it goes on. Life for women, especially was tough. Ursula expresses relief that Hugh is unable to give her any children because she herself almost died giving birth to her beloved daughter, Meg. She also lost a newborn son in a previous marriage.Read more ›
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By Tigerlily on August 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
Ursula Stannard is asked to help solve a 23 year old murder, involving poison. She is called upon by Mark Easton, who wishes Ursula to investigate the facts concerning the death of Peter Hoxton, whom Mark's father was accused of murdering. Hoxton was in love with Gervase's wife, Judith, and had no problem letting this be known, and made many plays for her affection. When he is the victim of foul play, suspicion lands on Gervase. Easton killed himself soon after the poisoning of Hoxton, leaving behind only a letter stating he would rather die by his own hand than be convicted of the crime. The ensuing years have left a pall hanging over the Easton family. Mark, who wishes to marry, is being prevented by the alleged actions of his progenitor, because the Mason family will not consent to his marrying their daughter, his beloved, Jane.

Ursula is hesitant to take on this mission, for the simple fact that she is tired of intrigue and wishes to lead a quiet life. However, Hawkswood, her husband's home, is at risk, and the Stannard's need money to save it. Ursula also wants to ensure her daughter, Meg, has a nice dowry at her disposal, as the Stannard's are considering marriage for her. Spurred on by the promise of money and by the chance to aid her family, Ursula agrees to Mark's request and delves into solving the mystery of Peter Hoxton's murder. Was Gervase Easton really the man who poisoned him, or was this a case of mistaken identity?

Amidst all of this, England and its peace are threatened. Rebel insurgents are making moves to wage war, and to also free the imprisoned Mary, Queen of Scots. Ursula is tasked by Queen Elizabeth to make inquiries throughout the countryside to see who is harboring these troublemakers and threatening her throne.
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