First of all I would like to thank Natasha Harding at Pan Mac for sending me a copy of this book on exchange for an honest review and allowing me to be a part of this fabulous blog tour.

The Chosen Queen follows Edyth in her journey from teenage girl on the cusp of womanhood to her crowning as the Queen of Wales and then as the Queen of England. Set in the 1050s to 1066 this book covers some of the major historical events which took place in the run up to the battle of Hastings in 1066.

I enjoyed the Chosen Queen so much more than I had at first expected. Historical fiction is the genre I find the most difficult to immerse myself in, but this was not the case with this book. I was drawn in to the plot from page one. It was fast paced and absolutely fasinating, I was compelled to keep on reading, I just had to discover what would happen next. I went in to reading this with very little knowledge of the history of the period in which the book was set, but after reading this I found myself desperate to know more.

Edyth as a character is beautiful and captivating, I was instantly drawn to her. I love her beliefs and dreams about love and life, I love her strength and courage.

Then you have Svana, the free spirit, she was a character you just had to love. Her thoughts and beliefs so much further ahead than the times in which they were living and her ability to see things before others, such as Edyth’s role in England. I loved reading the correspondence between her and Edyth, I felt it added more depth to the plot and made it even more realistic.

Then we have the Kings, Harold and Griffin, both so different as characters, yet equally as important and loved by Edyth.

The Chosen Queen is an epic read, with twists and changes which kept me on the edge of my seat. I shed tears along with Edyth and Svana, experiencing both their highs and lows with them.

This is a powerful novel, one which I loved. I am so looking forward to book 2 of thos trilogy, if this is a sign of things to come we are in for an incredible journey. Rich plots, fascinating characters and detailed historical events. This book has definitely changed my opinion on historial fiction

Book Blurb:

The Queens of the Conquest trilogy
1066. Three Queens. One Crown.

As a young woman in England’s royal court, Edyth, granddaughter of Lady Godiva, dreams of marrying for love. But political matches are rife while King Edward is still without an heir and the future of England is uncertain.

When Edyth’s family are exiled to the wild Welsh court, she falls in love with the charismatic King of Wales – but their romance comes at a price and she is catapulted onto the opposing side of a bitter feud with England. Edyth’s only allies are Earl Harold Godwinson and his handfasted wife, Lady Svana.

As the years pass, Edyth finds herself elevated to a position beyond even her greatest expectations. She enjoys both power and wealth but as her star rises the lines of love and duty become more blurred than she could ever have imagined. As 1066 dawns, Edyth is asked to make an impossible choice.

Her decision is one that has the power to change the future of England forever . . .

The Chosen Queen is the perfect blend of history, fast-paced plot and sweeping romance with a cast of strong female characters – an unforgettable read.

 

 

And a few words from Joanna:
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I sometimes wonder what it must be like to live only one life – very relaxing I suspect. I, however, find that I’m often existing in at least two, switching between them like Mr Ben in his magic changing room, though not always as good-naturedly.

When I spent a lot of time writing short stories I could have any number of characters, settings and scenarios scrabbling around in my head, desperate to get out onto paper. That was strange enough but now that I’m writing full length novels it’s almost as if I genuinely have two worlds – my ‘real’ life with my lovely family and friends, with supermarkets and bills, parties and homework, and my sometimes almost-as-real life with my heroine.

What’s so truly lovely about it, though, is that I am not alone in doing this – no writer is. For the other crucial part of the fiction jigsaw is the reader’s imagination; every bit as powerful as the writer’s. It’s only together that the casts of novels, be they historical, contemporary, futuristic, or something in between, get to actually live.

Last summer in France, I saw a woman by the pool reading Tracy’s Bloom’s newly self-published (and now hugely bestselling) book ‘No one Ever has Sex on a Tuesday’. The poor creature had to suffer me bouncing up to her in my bikini saying, ‘my friend wrote that’. She smiled very politely, bless her, and agreed it was all ‘very exciting’ and then went gratefully back to the book as I scuttled off with the kids doing their usual ‘oh mum!’

But it was exciting. What had started in Tracy’s head had made it, via the wonders of computers and printers and the internet and a plane or two, into that other lady’s head and I’m so grateful MacMillan are publishing my trilogy so that my characters will have a chance to make that journey too. I may be a bit weird – most writers probably are – but I hope that as my first novel hits the shelves, people enjoy my alternate reality every bit as much as I can honestly say that I do.

 

Summary
Review Date
The Chosen Queen Book Cover The Chosen Queen
Queens of the Conquest 1
Joanna Courtney
Pan; Main Market Ed
07/05/2015
352

He looked like a king that day, Harold. Even in a simple bridegroom's tunic of darkest green he looked like royalty as he stepped up to take the Lady Svana's hand. There was no gold in sight, just flowers; no parade of bishops, just a smiling monk in a sack-robe and bare feet. There was no betrothal contract, no formal prayers, no exchange of lands or elaborate gifts, just the linking of hands joining two people for a year and a day.


Edyth had said nothing but it had seemed to her then that Harold glowed when he was with his handfast wife and it was that glow, more than any gold or land or title, that drew people to him. 'Love prefers to be free,' Svana had said and Edyth had carried that with her ever since. It had been her ideal, lit up by firelight and scented with meadow grass, and now, on the brink of womanhood, she craved such a passion for herself.

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