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The Dreams of Kings Paperback – August 26, 2014
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Top Customer Reviews
The two stars are for the character of the Great Controller, an interesting mystery man I'd like to know better.
This story is filled with a full cast of characters. Each of them are very complex, and the reader is allowed to get into their heads. Yet the main characters whom all the other characters revolve around are Richard, Edward, and Margaret. Margaret is a strong queen. In the novel, she has the makings of a king. She rules for her mad husband, and it is she who is fighting for England, not her husband. She falls in love with Simon, and it is with him that she finds happiness and peace during her difficult time. One thing that I liked about Margaret is that she does not wish to be born a woman but a man. I found it quite fitting because she is very strong. I liked how the author humanized Margaret of Anjou because in most books I have read of her, she is usually not portrayed as a likable historical figure.
Because this work is purely fiction, the author does take a few liberties in his work. Some of the liberties are rumors and gossip at the time that they believe is true. One example is that Elizabeth Woodville and Jacquetta used witchcraft to seduce Edward IV. While this is preposterous, I still found it an interesting plot device. Another plot device is that Margaret’s child, Prince Edward of Wales is illegitimate. I found this really creative and unique.
Overall, this is an in-depth look into the psyche of the characters involved in The War of The Roses. While these characters are filled with vice, they have some redeeming qualities. I liked the love story not only between Margaret of Anjou, but also of the servants, Rose and John, which is simple and sweet. The story is very fast-past. It is full of drama, scandal, political intrigue, danger, and battles. The characters are very complex, and it is clear that the author has done his research. I felt that the era came alive, and I was glad to be immersed in it. I recommend this book to anyone interested in The War of The Roses and Philippa Gregory.
(Note: This book was given to me by Publishing Push in exchange for an honest review.)
History is like archaeology. From a few bones, we must reconstruct the lifelike animal. Historical fiction is the same. David Saunders has done a fine job of doing so, and filled the empty periods in the record with real emotion, personalities, tension. The events described may or may not have happened -- but they are certainly real within the story.
One fun feature is that we follow the lives of two decent, very likeable young men who are on opposite sides of the conflict. We want both to win, but of course they can’t. And knowing the historical facts gives a bittersweet tang to reading about their struggles. I won’t give away the outcome of course.
If you want to read about the savage times of the War of the Roses, you can’t do better than this book.
As with any fact-to-fiction volume, things have been changed, but they are not glaring errors, rather they are modifications and embellishments to make this story work as fiction.
Some scenes were surprisingly violent, and I loved it. A good bloodbath is always a plus for me when I'm reading. Richard, as a child, is given the same eerie and dark description as some of the other children in horror fiction have. He is unsettling to read about, and for me, he was my favorite thing here. Murderous children are like bloodbaths: great enhancers to any stories.
This book is not for the faint of heart, as it contains violence and witchcraft, but it is a wonderful book, fun to read and definitely not what I expected when I was asked to review this.
I will definitely be rereading this!