Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Roses Have Thorns: A Novel of Elizabeth I By Sandra Byrd

I received this book from Howard Books for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description:

From the acclaimed author of To Die For comes a stirring novel told that sheds new light on Elizabeth I and her court.

Like Philippa Gregory and Alison Weir, Sandra Byrd has attracted countless fans for evoking the complexity, grandeur, and brutality of the Tudor period. In her latest tour de force, she poses the question: What happens when serving a queen may cost you your marriage--or your life?

In 1565, seventeen-year-old Elin von Snakenborg leaves Sweden on a treacherous journey to England. Her fiance has fallen in love with her sister and her dowry money has been gambled away, but ahead of her lies an adventure that will take her to the dizzying heights of Tudor power. Transformed through marriage into Helena, the Marchioness of Northampton, she becomes the highest-ranking woman in Elizabeth's circle. But in a court that is surrounded by Catholic enemies who plot the queen's downfall, Helena is forced to choose between her unyielding monarch and the husband she's not sure she can trust--a choice that will provoke catastrophic consequences.

Vividly conjuring the years leading up to the beheading of Mary Queen of Scots, Roses Have Thorns is a brilliant exploration of treason, both to the realm and to the heart.

My Thoughts:

Roses Have Thorns is the third novel by Sandra Byrd that I have had the pleasure of reading.  The two novels prior to this one are wonderful books and Roses Have Thorns does not disappoint. In this latest novel, Sandra Byrd focuses on Elizabeth I reign of England.  The main character is Elin von Snakenborg, from Sweden who leaves home as part of royalty court from Sweden.  Once there Elin decides that she will stay, having a position with Elizabeth I court.  Elin changes her name to Helena and finds herself The Marchioness of Northampton, marrying a man she loved. Helena is the highest ranking woman in Elizabeth's Court and Helena continues to serve as part of Elizabeth's inner circle.  During this time,Mary Queen of Scots, employs anyone who will help her carry out killing Elizabeth. 

Roses Have Thorns is a wonderful novel. After reading the other two novels, I could not wait for this latest installment. I am a huge fan of historical fiction and after reading the first book in Sandra Byrd's Tudor Series, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn, I became very intriqued by The Tudor Period. Sandra Byrd writes with authority on this time period and all that is involved with it. While being works for fiction, there is much history throughout this novel.  I found myself unable to put this novel down.  I did have a little trouble keeping track of all the names of people in this one but it got better as I continued.  I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Historical Fiction, especially The Tudor Period. Roses Have Thorns can be read as a stand alone novel but I highly suggest reading the other two novels, they are awesome.I cannot wait to read the next installment of Sandra Byrd's Tudor Series.  I give this book 4.5 stars.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for reading and reviewing my book, Beth. I truly appreciate it - and you!


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