Every Sunday Tanzanite highlights books that will be released during the upcoming week. She hopes you will find something you will enjoy!
The King's Concubine by Anne O'Brien. US release June 5, 2012 (released in the UK in May 2012).
One marriage. Three people. Proud king. Loving wife. Infamous mistress. 1362. Philippa of Hainault selects a young orphan from a convent. Alice Perrers, a girl born with nothing but ambition. The Queen has a role waiting for her at court. 'I have lifted you from nothing Alice. Now you repay me.' Led down the corridors of the royal palace, the young virgin is secretly delivered to King Edward III - to perform the wifely duties of which ailing Philippa is no longer capable. Power has a price, and Alice Perrers will pay it. Mistress to the King. Confidante of the Queen. Whore to the court. Her fate is double edged; loved by the majesties, ostracised by her peers. Alice must balance her future with care as her star begins to rise - the despised concubine is not untouchable. Politics and pillow talk are dangerous bedfellows. The fading great King wants her in his bed. Her enemies want her banished. One mistake and Alice will face a threat worse than any malicious whispers of the past.
The Secret Keeper by Sandra Byrd. US and UK release June 5, 2012.
The author of To Die For returns to the court of Henry VIII as a young woman is caught between love and honor. Juliana St. John is the daughter of a prosperous knight. Though her family wants her to marry the son of her father's business partner, circumstances set her on a course toward the court of Henry VIII and his last wife, Kateryn Parr.
Sir Thomas Seymour, uncle of the current heir, Prince Edward, returns to Wiltshire to tie up his concerns with Juliana's father's estate and sees instantly that Juliana would fit into the household of the woman he loves, Kateryn Parr. Her mother agrees to have her placed in Parr's household for "finishing" and Juliana goes, though perhaps reluctantly.
For she knows a secret. She has been given the gift of prophecy, and in one of her visions she has seen Sir Thomas shredding the dress of the king's daughter, the lady Elizabeth, to perilous consequence. As Juliana learns the secrets of King Henry VIII's court, she faces threats and opposition, learning truths about her own life that will undo everything she holds dear.
Three Medieval Queens: Queenship and the Crown in Fourteenth Century England by Lisa Benz St. John. Non-fiction. US release June 5, 2012 (released in the UK in May 2012)
This innovative study looks at a previously unstudied dimension of medieval queenship, examining the ways in which three fourteenth-century English queens—Margaret of France, Isabella of France, and Philippa of Hainault—exercised power and authority. These women were consorts and dowagers for overlapping periods, creating a continuous transition from one queen to the next. It thus provides a unique perspective on normative queenly behaviour and political culture, formulating valuable insights into gender, status; the concept of the crown, and power and authority.
Master and God by Lindsey Davis. US release June 5, 2012 (released in the UK in March 2012).
Set in the reign of the Emperor Domitian in first-century Rome, Master and God is Lindsey Davis’s meticulously researched epic novel of the life and times surrounding the last of the Flavian dynasty of emperors. Gaius Vinius is a reluctant Praetorian Guard—the Emperor’s personal guard—and a man with a disastrous marriage history. Flavia Lucilla is also in the imperial court and she is responsible not only for having created the ridiculous hairstyle worn by the imperial ladies but for also making toupees for the balding and increasingly paranoid emperor. The two of them are brought together in an unlikely manner—a devastating fire in Rome—which then leads to a lifelong friendship.Together they watch Domitian’s once talented rule unravel into madness and cruelty, until the people closest to him conspire to delete him from history. As an imperial bodyguard, Vinius then faces a tough decision. Master and God is a compelling novel of the Roman Empire—from the height of power to the depths of madness—told from the perspective of two courtiers and unlikely friends who together are the witnesses to history.
The Seven Wonders: A Novel of the Ancient World by Steven Saylor. US and UK release June 5, 2012.
An enthralling prequel to his bestselling Roma Sub Rosa series of mysteries set in the Ancient World, Steven Saylor takes readers back to the younger days of Gordianus the Finder. The year is 92BC and Gordianus has just turned eighteen and is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime: a far-flung journey to see the Seven Wonders of the World. Gordianus is not yet called 'The Finder' - that title belongs to his father, who we meet in these pages. But at each of the Seven Wonders, the wide-eyed Roman encounters a mystery to challenge his powers of deduction. Here is a portrait of a master sleuth in the making, the earliest exploits of the man who will become the most sought-after investigator in Rome. Accompanying Gordianus on this travels is his tutor, Antipater of Sidon, the world's most celebrated poet. Together, teacher and pupil journey to the fabled cities of Greece and Asia Minor, and then on to Babylon and Egypt. They attend the Olympic Games, take part in exotic festivals, and marvel at the most spectacular constructions ever devised by mankind.
City of Fiends by Michael Jecks. UK release June 7, 2012.
It's 1327 and England is in turmoil. King Edward II has been removed from the throne and his son installed in his place. The old man's rule had proved a disaster for the realm and many hope that his removal may mean the return of peace to England's cities. Keeper of the King's Peace Sir Baldwin de Furnshill and his friend Bailiff Simon Puttock had been tasked with guarding Edward II, but they have failed in their task and now ride fast to Exeter to inform the sheriff of the old king's escape. In Exeter, the sheriff has problems of his own. Overnight the body of a young maid has been discovered, lying bloodied and abandoned in a dirty alleyway. The city's gates had been shut against the lawlessness outside, so the perpetrator must still lie within the sanctuary of the town. When Baldwin de Furnshill arrives, along with Sir Richard de Welles, a companion of old, he is tasked with uncovering the truth behind this gruesome murder. But, in a city where every man hides a secret, his task will be far from easy...
Lady Jane Grey (My Story series) by Sue Reid. Young Adult. UK release June 7, 2012.
The tragic story of Lady Jane Grey who was Queen of England for nine days in July 1553. Jane grew up watching her cousins in training as heirs to the throne, little imagining that by a twist of fate she would one day be crowned. But this is Tudor England where nobody plays fair, and even a queen isn't safe from those who wsh her harm.