Read The Time of Singing by Elizabeth Chadwick Online


US Title : For the King's FavorA captivating story of a mother's love stretched to breaking and a knight determined to rebuild his life with the royal mistress, For the King's Favor is Elizabeth Chadwick at her best. Based on a true story never before told and impeccably researched, this is a testament to the power of sacrifice and the strength of love. When Roger Bigod, hUS Title : For the King's FavorA captivating story of a mother's love stretched to breaking and a knight determined to rebuild his life with the royal mistress, For the King's Favor is Elizabeth Chadwick at her best. Based on a true story never before told and impeccably researched, this is a testament to the power of sacrifice and the strength of love. When Roger Bigod, heir to the powerful earldom of Norfolk, arrives at court to settle an inheritance, he meets Ida de Tosney, young mistress to King Henry II. In Roger, Ida sees a chance for lasting love, but their decision to marry carries an agonizing price. It's a breathtaking novel of making choices, not giving up, and coping with the terrible shifting whims of the king....

Title : The Time of Singing
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781847440976
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 514 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Time of Singing Reviews

  • Rebecca Huston
    2019-05-16 10:08

    A simply wonderful novel set in the late reign of Henry II, King of England, and the young woman who became his mistress, Ida de Tosney. As with all of Elizabeth Chadwick's writing, the historical setting and details are spot on, but best of all, she can tell a terrific story. Ida is very young when she becomes Henry's mistress and bears him a child, but she has to make an impossible choice when she has the opportunity to marry... I don't want to reveal anything more here, as I don't want to ruin the book for anyone else. I cried and cried throughout parts of this book -- and I don't usually do that with novels -- but I was so riveted by Ida's story, and that of Roger Bigod. This is what historical fiction ought to be, where you feel as though you are there, eavesdropping on the lives of the people who lived then. Close to us in many ways, but also very different in others. Both thumbs up, and five very enthusastic stars from me. This is being published in the US as For the King's Favor in September 2010 by Sourcebooks. It's great seeing Ms. Chadwick's books getting some much needed exposure. For the longer review, please go here:

  • Allison
    2019-05-17 16:09

    For the King's Favor is a worthy companion novel to The Greatest Knight. It takes place during the same time (during the reign of Richard II), and overlaps with William Marshal's story at a few points, so definitely read that book, and probably also its sequel, first. It's great to see glimpses of William again from another perspective, but it's also great to learn more about the Bigods. William and Roger struggle in parallel to build their houses, but their obstacles are very different, and Roger's honor is just as fine as William's in his own way. We also get Ida's full perspective in this book - she is not just a prize to be won or given, but a woman doing her best to make a life in a world where she has no power and few choices.This is written in the same style as the Marshal books, covering many years in a way that is somehow not boring. I love how Chadwick shows the capriciousness of kings and how it could make and break people's lives, sometimes more than once. I feel like I know the people who lived in those times, their ambitions, heartaches, successes through luck or hard work and loyalty, or their failures in spite of them. Chadwick makes the history come alive.

  • Graham
    2019-05-11 11:05

    THE TIME OF SINGNG is my third Chadwick read, after THE MARSH KING'S DAUGHTER and THE WILD HUNT. I absolutely adored those two books and I was really looking forward to this one.I ended up...well, not hating it, but being distinctly unimpressed. The one thing that kept me reading was the author's grasp of language: Chadwick's prose is often beautiful, extremely well crafted and a joy to read.The same cannot be said for her storytelling in this one. I wonder if the reason for the drop in quality is because this book's based on real characters, so there's no opportunity to up the ante in terms of drama and emotion. Instead, what we get is a plodding retelling of the lives of a number of people. Is this book about Roger and his attempt to win his lands by right? Is it about Ida and her relationship with the King? Is it about the malevolence of Roger's half-brother Huon, or the rivalry between his son and stepson? This lengthy book is about all of them, and none of them.The era comes to life, often vividly, and the author's research is exemplary, as always. But there's no drive, there's nothing to keep the reader enfixed or want to keep reading. It's one of those books that I was desperate to finish. Story strands come and go, but I never felt any sense of excitement, intrigue, desire or menace. Initially there are romantic parts but these tail away and even the political incident is distinctly lacking in danger. I didn't care about Roger very much, and certainly not for the maudlin Ida. The sub-plot involving Roger's stepbrothers is a good one, but even that fades away to be dealt with in a rather unsatisfactory and rushed way, in favour of long, detailed descriptions of scenes like tourneys that don't further the plot.In the end, I think this would have worked a lot better as a non-fiction read. As it is, it occupies the uneasy ground between fact and fiction, forced to follow minor events and never free to give way to literary devices. My next Chadwick read will definitely be one of her earlier ones.

  • Misfit
    2019-04-29 15:09

    The Time of Singing retells the story of Roger Bigod, son of Hugh Bigod Earl of Norfolk, who joined the younger Henry in his revolt against his father Henry II. When the revolt fails Hugh loses the Earldom and lands and when he dies there is a bitter dispute over the right to inherit the Earldom between Roger and his step-mother and her two sons. While Roger serves Henry and bides his time to claim his Earldom young Ida de Tosney arrives in court as the King's ward. Henry is smitten and has other plans for Ida and he makes her his mistress and she eventually bears him a son, William. Unhappy with her position as mistress to the king, Ida casts her hopes on Roger and Henry allows them to marry -- although she must leave her son behind.Henry still withholds the Earldom, but he does restore some of their lands and Ida and Roger build a life and family together and begin rebuild Framlingham Castle to greater heights than it was before. Once Richard I takes the crown at the death of Henry the Earldom is restored to Roger, and the rest of the book recounts their lives as they struggle to keep everything they hold dear as the battle lines are drawn during Richard's absence on crusade and subsequent kidnapping threatens to bankrupt England.A very enjoyable surprise for me was the appearance of my personal favorite hero, William Marshal – I did not expect him at all, or to feature so prominently – but it appears Bigod and Marshal were contemporaries and friends. Another big surprise was Ida’s son William – who readers of fiction set during the reigns of John and Henry III will recognize as William Longespée, and I have to admit many of my favorite moments in the book were of William and his attempts at a relationship with his mother, Roger and their children. While I enjoyed this book very much, this is not an action packed, page turning, sit on the edge of your type of book, but one to sit back and savor like a fine red wine or a box of chocolates (or both!!). As always with Chadwick's books, the way she brings the medieval period to life in such a graceful and effortless way, be it the sights, sounds, smells, food, clothes and battles is just awesome. As quoted on some of her book jackets, the next best thing to time travel. 4.5/5 stars.

  • Blodeuedd Finland
    2019-04-29 16:58

    Like with all fiction she does have some artistic freedom, because we don't know everything, like how old Ida really was. But Chadwick always stays close to the truth and does her best to make it as historically accurate as possible, and that is what I love about her books. They are true to facts, but at the same time she makes history come alive as she write about people that have lived, like Roger and Ida, or when she creates something new.Plot:Ida de Tosney is a royal ward, and mistress of King Henry II, she gives him a son, but she wants freedom and finds it in Roger Bigod who is fighting over his inheritance with his half brothers. This is the story of their love, children in a turbulent time.My thoughts:I can really see myself there, Chadwick breaths life in times gone by and history feels like yesterday. If it's court procedure, clothes or how they act. In this book the characters have lived for real and from that she pieces together a wonderful story. Ida does what she must, what could a ward do when the king wants her in his bed. In Roger she sees a chance to get away. He is here a very calm and sensible man, not at all like his father. Together they make a good pair. William Marshall also makes appearances, Henry II and his family, and Ida's son with Henry. It sure it's a more interesting way to learn about history than in a textbook.The story never gets boring, they go on with their lives, and because of the time there is always something going on. Henry's son fighting against him, Richard the Lionheart going on crusade, and of course when Roger tries to get his lands back and his father's title. The quiet moments are just as good, and I end the book with a smile.Recommendation and final thoughts:To every HF fan yes, of course, and to the rest of you too. This is a lovely piece of historical fiction. The book makes me want to go there, just to breath that same air for a moment or two. The book made me remembered why I loved her books in the first place.Cover: Truly lovely. I have to say something about the UK one too because that one I love too, there is this pre-raphaelite painting just like it. And she is stitching the Norfolk banner here so perfect.

  • Krista Baetiong Tungol
    2019-04-26 16:48

    The fourth book under the William Marshal series and the first under Bigod’s, it tells us the story of Roger Bigod and his bid to restore the earldom he lost with his father’s rebellion, his royal duties as a lawyer and administrator, and his marriage to Ida de Tosney, King Henry II’s former mistress.Like William Marshal, Roger Bigod lived a life of loyalty, wisdom and honor; he was also an experienced soldier, having fought for the king’s side since he was a young man. Not much is written about our medieval hero, and so Miss Chadwick had to make use of a lot of ingenuity and flair (and a few from the Akashic records, too, she admits) to come up with a story that is credible and brilliant. Indeed, it is amazing how she can easily conjure up a gripping story line for historical events without altering the facts. Even the characters’ description (their looks, traits, etc.) seem natural and realistic. Halfway through the read I was already convinced that Roger Bigod was certainly all of these good things—kind, gentle, honorable, patient, brave, and loving. It’s just too bad that I live in the present. Where have all the chivalrous men gone?

  • Jemidar
    2019-05-05 12:56

    Buddy read with Anna :-).

  • Angelc
    2019-05-24 09:07

    4.5 StarsIda de Tosney arrived at King Henry II's court at age 15 to be his ward. But the King favored her immediately and she became his mistress. Ida really had no choice and was his mistress for years and they even had a son together. When a handsome, shy young lord, Roger Bigod, comes to the court for the King to settle his inheritance, Ida is smitten. She flirts with Roger at every chance, but Roget is very cautious of not offending the King. Will Ida be able to convince the King to give her up and let her marry, and what will become of her son?This was my first book by Elizabeth Chadwick, but it won't be my last! I am not used to fiction based on historical fact being so romantic! Sigh, Roger was absolutely swoon-worthy. I loved that he was so shy and honorable. Ida was pretty feisty and very forward about how much she liked Roger and she took control of what she wanted and eventually convinced the King to let her marry Roger.I loved Ida and Roger's flirtation at Henry's court, but I loved even more how the story told about their actual marriage. Ida feels things for Roger that she had never felt for Henry. Ida and Roger have lots of ups and downs in their loving relationship, and Roger's service to King Henry makes everything more difficult for them and their family.Roger's love of hats was an ongoing joke and never failed to make me smile. Little things like this made the characters really come to life.I liked how the author wasn't afraid to use jealousy as a plot line. Of course Roger would be jealous if his wife had been the King's mistress! Who wouldn't be?The only reason this book didn't get all five stars from me was because the last 100 pages or so seemed to deal more with Ida's two oldest sons instead of Ida and Roger. I liked the ending and it was good to see everything come full circle, but I felt like the focus on the sons moved too far away from the main story.Overall, this is fantastic historical fiction with a lot of romance! ARC sent by publisher in exchange for honest reviewreviewed for

  • Michelle
    2019-05-24 08:42

    I really, really enjoyed this story. The one drawback was that the review copy I received had translation issues between formats because there were numerous obvious typos in it that were distracting. The story was a bit too long as well. Regardless, I found it to be a very enjoyable read and I would recommend it to people who enjoy a good medieval romance. This author certainly knows how to deliver on that account. Ms. Chadwick's writing style was thoroughly engrossing and I found myself living in the 1100s along with the characters. The deflowering of Ida by the king at such a young age and her subsequent service to him was realistically portrayed. I really grieved her situation. She was truly trapped and was such a sweet girl with a good heart. So when Roger Bigod came along and there was an obvious attraction between them, I was hoping and praying that she would be allowed to marry him. Their relationship with exciting and I enjoyed experiencing their budding relationship along with them. Their marriage was intense and sweet at the same time. Their love for each other was powerful and real. I think the author's greatest strength was in her ability to develop powerful love relationships between characters. She also did an outstanding job with the setting and with showing inter-familial rivalries and the desire to possess land and power. I agonized with Ida when she had to leave her oldest son behind and I grieved for her every time she reflected on the loss. I also rejoiced in her other children who were a comfort to her. I understood Roger's pain when he felt like he was in competition with the king even though he knew deep inside that he was not, and that she truly loved him, not Henry. It did make for some awesome chemistry and set up the sexual tension between them as husband and wife very well. This story was hot, but done in good taste. The romantic elements were strong but not overarching because the story was chock full of history and historical subplots that made for a well-rounded novel.

  • Jennifer (JC-S)
    2019-05-23 15:49

    ‘You are stronger than you think’Ms Chadwick’s latest novel draws additional historical figures from the shadows of the 12th century and imbues them with vibrant life. Roger Bigod, is the disputed heir to the earldom of Norfolk from approximately 1177. This dispute, which involved Roger’s stepmother and stepbrothers, commenced during the reign of Henry II and extended for over a decade before being resolved by Richard I. The dispute brings Roger to court, where he meets Ida de Tosney who is Henry II’s young mistress and the mother of his son. Eventually, Ida and Roger marry and while the marriage is a consequence of mutual attraction, it has its costs and burdens.Ms Chadwick’s greatest strength is her ability to combine historical accuracy and characters whose actions can be viewed from a contemporary perspective without any loss of authenticity. This accuracy is important to Ms Chadwick, and it is conveyed to the reader in a way which, while it seems effortless, is a tribute to detailed research. We may not know, with great certainty and at this distance, exactly how Roger and Ida interacted with each other on a personal basis but the novel largely accords with the known facts and provides a fascinating insight into a particularly turbulent time in English history. The medieval code of chivalry carried with it both burdens and costs as well as benefits and privileges.For me, an added attraction is the links between the Bigods and another of my personal heroes: William Marshal. I was aware of Roger Bigod before reading this novel but not especially interested in him. Now I find that Ms Chadwick has – yet again – introduced me to an historical character about whom I need to know more. Fortunately, I am provided with a select bibliography which gives me a great starting point.

  • Rosemary
    2019-05-20 17:11

    I really, really, reeeeaaaallly wanted to like this book. It is set in a period I love, and talks about historical figures I don't know very well (the Bigods, Longspee), with ones I have read a lot about playing supporting roles (Henry II, Richard I, Eleanor of Aquitaine, John Lackland, William Marshall, among others).But Chadwick takes too many liberties, and gets too much wrong (really--she's a member of Regia Anglorum, and yet she writes of the heroine "pinning her wimple under her chin with a round brooch." Ummm. No. A small detail, but telling.). Then, in full disclosure, at the end she talks about how she gets a sense of her characters through the"Akashic Record." Okay--I really, really believe there's more to life than just what we see and hear, but even for me this is a little...out there. It reminds me disturbingly of Taylor Caldwell and her "methods" in writing I, Judas, among other things. When coupled with some of what I know she got wrong, based on historical record, this pushed me over the edge.Maybe if I'd liked the heroine more, or even the hero, it would have worked better for me. Ultimately, the entire book felt like a tangent--which, in fact, it was. Chadwick wrote the book because in writing her series on William Marshall she found Hugh Bigod's frequent appearances in history interesting, and that his wife was the mother of one of Henry II's most famous bastards, equally so. Thus, this book.A pleasant summer read, I suppose, but I can't recommend going out of your way to find it.

  • Chris
    2019-04-29 12:08

    I found this book enjoyable in terms of style, but kept wanting something to happen because nothing much seemed to. It isn't bad writing, but I never felt like anyone was in any trouble whatsoever.Chadwick does have a good sense of time and place. It did feel like you were there.

  • April
    2019-05-02 15:09

    I accidentally bought this — it was free for a while and ended up bouncing around on the Free Kindle bestseller list, and somehow when I downloaded it, I failed to notice it wasn't free any more. I paid a full $9.99 for it and was pretty upset about it because I'd never even heard of the author before, let alone read anything by her. But I kept the book anyway, hoping I'd like it and yet prepared to read it already prejudiced against it because of the circumstances in which I acquired it.I was pleasantly surprised.For the King's Favor is historical fiction, a novel based on real people in history, in this case the Bigods in the medieval times. I've read only a few other books in this genre, and I can only imagine how difficult it must be doing the research for something like this, gathering as many details as you can and then extrapolating and imagining for whatever gaps there are in the small collection of facts. As an amateur genealogist, I respect anyone who can do this well, and I have to say, Elizabeth Chadwick does this very well.I really felt I got to know the Bigods intimately while reading this book, and while it's hard to give books in this genre the same sort of feel as a conventional fictional novel, where the story arc seems straightforward and leads to a happy ending (most real people don't have a clear happy ending), I felt at times as if I were reading a proper story and not a fictionalized biography. In fact, there was even a point in the book where it was almost like reading a Julie Garwood novel — there was a boat race, and several of the men in the book that you don't think are getting along that great up until that point are on the same team; they go through some male bonding and win the competition to boot. It reminded me of a scene in a Garwood book where the hero and the heroine's brother do really well in a tournament and swagger after soundly trouncing everyone else.But the truly best part for me was just really getting to know these people — before reading this book, they were just meaningless names on a family tree in the annals of history, in a time period I care very little about, and now, I find myself wanting to learn more about the people, the places, and the events of the time and reading more in this genre. I'd always been rather indifferent to history — it was NOT my favorite subject in school, what with all those names and dates — but reading about the people of the time as though they were characters in a novel really, really helps spark my interest.

  • Tanzanite
    2019-05-03 12:52

    Another great story from Chadwick who puts another contender in the "historical-fiction-hunk-who-really-existed" field. Full review here:

  • Melissa
    2019-04-25 14:48

    Parts of the story were interesting. Some of the language was silly. One more "tightening of loins" and I would scream.

  • Lauren
    2019-04-25 12:01

    I thought "For the King's Favor" was a very enjoyable read. This book features the same troublemaking Plantagenets, Henry II and his brood of sons. This time, though, the story is told from the perspective of outsiders. Ida de Tourney is Henry's young ward. She heads to court to see what Henry decides to do about her fate. She wants to make a good impression on the King so that she is married off to a good family. Simultaneously, the novel tells the story of Roger Bigod, son of the disgraced Hugh Bigod. Roger struggles to regain his properties after they were confiscated after Hugh's support of the Young King in his failed rebellion against Henry II. The novel portrays Henry II as a self-centered schemer. While Henry could be loving, he thinks little of other's wishes and only of what is expedient for his own purposes. The middle aged King finds young Ida attractive and essentially rapes her. Ida then becomes his mistress. Meanwhile, Henry keeps dangling Roger's inheritance in front of him, enjoying his ability to collect revenues from Roger's patrimony while also enjoying Roger's loyalty as his liege lord. Ida, never comfortable as Henry's mistress, finds herself pregnant. Simultaneous to struggling wtih her own ambivalence and moral misgivings about her royal liaison, she decides to arrange her own marriage with Roger Bigod. Roger agrees to the match and the two marry. However, Ida's choice to marry comes with difficult consequences - Henry separates her from her son.The remainder of the book deals with Ida and Roger battling their demons as a result of their relationships with Henry II - Ida battling her guilt over giving up her son and Roger fighting for his lands, and once he gets them back, to performing his duty as an honorable earl. Chadwick does a fantastic job making people who died approximately eight hundred years ago seem like real, living people. In her author's note, Chadwick mentions that she went to a clairvoyant to help her understand what Ida and Roger might have felt about the key events in their lives. Chadwick's strategy paid off, as she created a very well-rounded life for people about whom not a ton is known. I think my favorite thing about this book is that the story, although familiar in the sense that it deals with the Plantagenets and William Marshall, felt new and fresh because it centered on characters I knew little about - Ida, Roger, and William Longespee - Ida's son with Henry. *****5 stars.

  • Terra
    2019-05-23 16:04

    I can't tell you how much I really loved this book with gushing over our author and her writing style til she blushes. Another fantastic story told during the same period as that of William Marshall and his books, The Greatest Knight and The Scarlet Lion but this time dealing with Roger Bigod, son of Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk.This time our hero and heroine are on pretty even footing with their stories inter tangling close to the beginning of the book. The fact that our characters are put together at a younger age and you get to see more of their personal life and strife's makes one thankful for the progress in culture down through the centuries. I also love the in depth little touches the author gave each character to make them seem more venerable and real in a highly personal way.Roger Bigod, son of Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk is not the bright and shinning star his bastard of a father wants him to be. Considered nothing better than the scrapings on the bottom of ones boot and the abuse that he takes not only from his father but also from his half brothers and step mother leave Roger no choice but to join ranks with King Henry II and try to prove to the King his worth. The sins of the father don't always pass down to become the sins of the son and one should be given a chance to prove oneself before being judged. So Roger's journey is about to begin and the choices he makes will prove him either a sinner or a saint so to speak.Ida de Tosney is a ward of the King and a very beautiful one at that. We all know how King Henry II was and for a young girl of fifteen years to escape the notice of the King when she is so innocent and beautiful is very highly unlikely. Ida does not accept her lot in life as easily as some of the King's other concubines but she comes to terms as with her situation in due time. Giving the King another bastard child and then having the child ripped from her life is enough to test even the most patient and agreeable of us.With the marriage of Roger and Ida brings about a fresh start for both of them but with baggage from their past rearing it's ugly head around far to many corners. Can they overcome the obstacles placed before them without letting the pain of the past swallow them up? Their story will show a resilience and courage that will prevail through history.

  • Kim
    2019-05-12 10:59

    I'm a big fan of Elizabeth Chadwick; there hasn't been a book of hers that I haven't liked or inhaled. For the King's Favor is no exception. It's a decent book, and the story kept me interested from the beginning to end. (view spoiler)[That said, it still isn't the best of her books. Roger Bigod and Ida de Tosney were okay as central characters, but ultimately were rather bland. Roger is honorable and loyal (even when he dearly wants to punch Henry II/Richard I/John in the face, and oh, one wishes he had if only for a bit of excitement), and Ida is a devout and loyal wife, keeping the homefires burning (and rebuilding her husband's home, really). She endures her time as the mistress of Henry II with the air of a martyr, only coming out of that a little bit when she has her eldest son, William, and then sees marriage to Roger as her ticket out of being a royal concubine, though she is fiercely attracted to him too.The entire overlying theme of the book seems to be that of endurance. Roger has to endure constant and unthanked service to Henry II in the hopes of getting his earldom back. Ida has to endure being Henry's mistress even though it is highly unsatisfactory for her both emotionally and physically. Roger has to endure constant insults to his loyalty because of his father's actions. Ida has to endure long absences from her husband as he goes about the King's business and a long separation from her eldest son. There are eventually rewards for their endurance, but there just didn't feel like there was any real climax to the story. Probably the most interesting part of the story was the long-standing feud between Roger and his stepmother and half-brothers over who should have the Earldom of Norfolk, and even that didn't see much action. Roger's half-brother Huon takes a few potshots at Roger and threatens him here and there, but ultimately does more than spew invective. The feud is ended by a combination of Huon's drunken accidental death and the desire for peace on the part of Huon's younger brother and mother. Things might have been more spiced up if this storyline had been given some real action. I get that the book is meant to follow history, but it couldn't hurt to take a bit more creative license. (hide spoiler)]Overall, a decent book, but not my favorite.

  • Rio (Lynne)
    2019-05-12 16:47

    This book should be read prior to Defy a King, but due to the way this book was released in the US, unlike the UK, we received them out of order. The UK version is (The Time of Singing.) Both are stand alone books, but it would have been nice to have read this one first. In this novel we learn about Roger Bigod during the turbulent years of King Henry II, King Richard and King John as he fights for his lands that his traitor father lost. We also experience his marriage to Ida de Tosney (King Henry's mistress and mother of his bastard William Longespee.) If you read "The Greatest Knight "the first in the trilogy" this book will make you smile reliving a lot of those memories. Roger Bigod and William Marshall go through a lot together. I won't say more for spoiler alerts, but this is another great Chadwick read. Once again this is a stand alone book, but reading the books in order makes it all that much more enriching The Greatest Knight, The Scarlet Lion, For the King's Favor, To Defy a King.

  • Toni Osborne
    2019-04-24 08:59

    Blending an array of authentic period details into a modern tale, Ms Chadwick has given life to two remarkable individuals. The book spans between 1173 and 1199 during the years of Henry 11's reign, this historical fiction is centered on Roger Bigod, heir to the earldom of Norfolk and his wife Ida de Tosney. With a steady pace and emotional tension, the story tells how Henry 11 was drawn by Ida's naivety and innocence and quickly made her his unwilling mistress, a son named William came from that union. He eventually gave her up in marriage to Roger Bigod. At the same time we follow Roger Bigod from his struggle to regain his earldom which was stripped from his father and disputed by his stepmother and brothers to the beginning of his relationship with Ida and finally to their long and remarkable life together. "The Time of Singing", propels the reader into two worlds, one tells, a love story with its moments of tenderness and lust and the other covers meticulously the life of medieval England bankrupted by its Crusades and politics, a country at the mercy of its kings and leaders. The writing is captivating and grabs your attention from the start. The story is straight forward and not encumbered by frivolous details. The characters are cleverly described and vividly brought to live. This is one absorbing novel and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  • Debbie
    2019-05-20 08:53

    Elizabeth Chadwick knows how to bring history and historical figures to life. This book about one of Henry II's wards, and his mistress, vividly describes court life. The character of Ida de Tosey comes to life as the story unfolds and she goes from a very young mistress to a mature woman stanidng up for herself and her familly. Once the king releases her to marry Roger Bigod, she joins with her husband to secure his inheritance and lands. Being a woman in those days meant a lot of time waiting for her husband to come back from court or battle, or in this case, even being held as hostage with King Richard. It would take a lot of strength to endure and keep hearth and home running smoothly. There are the usual political and courtly intrigues, as well as some of the pomp and ceremony of court life. I enjoy reading Elizabeth Chadwick's historical fiction and will probably read more of her works in the future.

  • Cathie
    2019-05-08 09:55

    From the back cover: Based on a true story.When Roger Bigod, heir to the powerful earldom of Norfolk, arrives at court in 1177 to settle a bitter inheritance dispute with his half-brothers, he encounters Ida de Tosney, young mistress to King Henry II. A victim of Henry's seduction and the mother of his son, Ida is attracted to Roger and sees in him a chance of lasting security beyond the fickle dazzle of her current life. But her decision to marry Roger carries an agonizing price.My Opinion:This is an excellent read and I highly recommend it. Elizabeth Chadwick gets better with each book and has evolved into a first-class author, a must buy for me. This is a historical romance in which Ms. Chadwick has done her homework well in reseaching the historical data. She keeps her readers involved from beginning to end and I eagerly look forward to her next book.

  • Lori
    2019-04-26 09:45

    Another great read for medieval history enthusiasts. I really enjoyed Ida and Roger's story. Most of the stories I have read set during this period have focused on the royal court or the life of the great William Marshal and much of his story centered around the courts of Henry II, Eleanor, the Young King, and Richard I. This story, on the other hand, dealt more with the effects these rulers had on Barons and landowners of the period. The story doesn't have the intensity of Chadwick's The Greatest Knight or The Scarlet Lion, but its beauty is in the love story between Ida and Roger despite the great obstacles set before them. Chadwick is a master at characterization and I love how she shows Ida's strength despite being a woman during a time where women had few options open to them.

  • Ivana
    2019-05-17 09:00

    Velmi pekny historicky roman. Roger, syn grofa z Norfolku si v boji o Anglicko vyberie inu stranu ako jeho otec. Ida z Tosney, kralova chranenkyna sa stane jeho (kralovou) milenkou. Tito dvaja sa stretnu a... zvysok sa dozviete :-)Pacila sa mi tema, obdobie (ano ano, Eleonora Akvitanska tam je tiez, hoci len okrajovo), pacilo sa mi, ze tam nebola vypichnuta typicka osudova zamilovanost ustrednej dvojice, ako to byva vo vacsine romanov. Ocenujem drobnosti - popisy vysiviek, opis turnajov, absenciu extra sexualnych scen, ktora z mnohych historickych romanov robi v podstate lahke eroticke romany s historickym pozadim. Za mna vydarene a idem hladat dalsie knizky od autorky (nechapem, ako som na nu mohla doteraz nenarazit, hoci par knih od nej mam uz dlhsie vo wishliste).

  • Kelly
    2019-05-04 12:58

    I think I made a mistake with this novel, in that I had already read 'To Defy a King' which gave away the ending of Roger and Ida. And some ending it was... Therefore I had lost any interest in the novel before I had begun. Having said that I continued but I just found the whole novel lacking in tension and emotion. Ida just sort of accepted everything, she wasn't in love with Henry but she was disgusted by him either. She liked Roger but I never had a sense of deep attraction or love. She lost a son, but other than two pages of wailing, she just seemed to get over it.The plot was there but it took too long to get to anything meaty and I grew rather bored unfortunately.

  • Christine
    2019-05-16 09:59

    I had a hard time getting through this book. The story didn't really grab me. I found some of the writing to sound as if the author picked up a thesaurus to replace a word with a more impressive sounding word that didn't necessarily work in the context it was written in. I don't think I'll rush to read another book by this author again.

  • Denise
    2019-05-20 09:56

    Elizabeth Chadwick's writing truly brings 12th century England to life and is a pleasure to read.

  • Leslie
    2019-05-04 08:44

    Brain Food: Spaghetti and MeatballsScandal Level: blush, mild heaving bosoms Violence Level: jousting and some warfareMust be __ old to read: 14Read if you liked: Richard the LionheartRe-readability: Probably notThoughts: I love Chadwick's work and this was no exception. I only took so long to finish because I had so much school reading. Fun writing, historical detail, and rich characters. This was a family I had never heard of and I am now going to look them up.

  • Carol
    2019-04-27 11:45

    Mahelt Marshall was a rebel. I like her! Ms. Chadwick tells a great story about her. Very good read.

  • Ally Edgerton
    2019-05-22 10:07

    Loved this book as I have loved many of Chadwick's books - embroiders you deeply into the historical landscape with rich character detail - I will definitely read more Chadwick!