The Greatest Knight: The Unsung Story of the Queen's Champion [NOOK Book]

Overview

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller!

Royal protector. Loyal servant. Forgotten hero.

A penniless young knight with few prospects, William Marshal is plucked from obscurity when he saves the life of Henry II's formidable queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine. In gratitude, she appoints him tutor to the heir to the throne, the volatile and fickle Prince Henry. But being a royal favorite brings its share of danger and ...

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The Greatest Knight: The Unsung Story of the Queen's Champion

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Overview

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller!

Royal protector. Loyal servant. Forgotten hero.

A penniless young knight with few prospects, William Marshal is plucked from obscurity when he saves the life of Henry II's formidable queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine. In gratitude, she appoints him tutor to the heir to the throne, the volatile and fickle Prince Henry. But being a royal favorite brings its share of danger and jealousy as well as fame and reward.

A writer of uncommon historical integrity and accuracy, Elizabeth Chadwick resurrects the true story of one of England's greatest forgotten heroes in a captivating blend of fact and fiction. The Greatest Knight restores William Marshal to his rightful place at the pinnacle of the Middle Ages, reflecting through him the triumphs, scandals, and power struggles that haven't changed in eight hundred years.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ELIZABETH CHADWICK AND THE GREATEST KNIGHT:

The Greatness of William Marshal: The descendants of the Greatest Knight himself include George Washington and Winston Churchill, as well as the Stuart kings of England and Scotland. He was partly responsible for the Magna Carta. He vowed his body to the Templars and is buried in Temple Church in London.

The Appeal of the Time Period: There are very few novels about Marshal, and no one has covered him as in depth as Elizabeth Chadwick has. In addition, unlike the Tudor era, there are not extensive amounts of historical fiction set in the 13th century.

The Integrity of the Research: Elizabeth Chadwick's research is impeccable. She not only visited many locations, but she re-enacted with a living history society where a quarter of the membership are either historians or archaeologists, and she collected and used replica artifacts from the period and engaged in experimental archaeology. She has taken courses in various medieval studies to facilitate her knowledge.

The Breadth of the Audience: Readers who are fans of Sharon Kay Penman, Anya Seton, Diana Gabaldon, Phillipa Gregory, and Jean Plaidy will like Elizabeth Chadwick. She appeals to readers who are looking for historical accuracy and strong, believable characters, readers who want to feel that they are being immersed in the period with well-rounded characters.

PRAISE FOR ELIZABETH CHADWICK:

Chadwick's novel immerses readers in Marshal's life and times, which should prove intriguing to any fan of historical fiction. The royals, and especially Eleanor, are particularly fascinating characters whom Chadwick employs to great effect. —Publishers Weekly

"The best writer of medieval fiction currently around." — Richard Lee, founder of the Historical Novel Society

"The reader is well aware on every page that this is life as it was lived eight hundred years ago, yet the characters are a fresh and natural as if they were living in the present time..." —The Historical Novels Review

"There's no better writer of medieval fiction than the marvelous Elizabeth Chadwick." —Lancashire Evening Post

"Elizabeth Chadwick is a gifted novelist and a dedicated researcher; it doesn't get any better than that."— Sharon Kay Penman, bestselling author of Devil's Brood

Elizabeth Chadwick lives near Nottingham with her husband and two sons. She is the author of 17 historical novels, including Lords of the White Castle, Shadows and Strongholds, A Place Beyond Courage, The Scarlet Lion, The Winter Mantle, and The Falcons of Montebard, four of which have been shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists' Awards.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
William Marshal, the younger son of a wealthy family, shows early prowess with a sword and uncommon chivalry, which he puts to good use saving the life of Eleanor of Aquitaine. Afterward, she makes him arms tutor to her sons, the young princes. Marshal pledges his service to heir Henry and stays with the prince, out of loyalty to Eleanor, throughout Henry's turbulent manhood and rebellion against his father. When Henry dies, Marshal swears loyalty to Henry's brother Richard, putting him at odds with his own brother, who is loyal to Prince John. When Richard leaves on crusade and John conspires to take the crown, Marshal must decide between family and honor. A true historical hero, if little known, William Marshal served under some of England's most famous kings and proved himself again and again throughout the troubled 12th century; Chadwick's novel immerses readers in Marshal's life and times, which should prove intriguing to any fan of historical fiction. The royals, and especially Eleanor, are particularly fascinating characters whom Chadwick employs to great effect. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
"The Greatest Knight is a must-read for any lover of history and/or the medieval period. Ms. Chadwick's account drags you right in and sets you down on the dusty, dirt roads alongside her hero and his entourage." - The Long and Short of It Reviews

"THE GREATEST KNIGHT was amazing... This book seemed to have a little bit of everything — suspense, deceit, love, wars, scandals." - Booking Mama

" I want to hand it to Elizabeth Chadwick... I found The Greatest Knight a rewarding read" - All About Romance

"This is an impeccably written historical fiction novel. The amount of research Chadwick must have put into it is incredible. " - S. Krishna's Books

"[V]ivid and interesting... " - Historical Tapestry

"The author clearly knows her subject matter and stayed true to it. Her skilled use of historical detail helped bring the world alive in my imagination without slowing the pace." - Genre Reviews

"The Greatest Knight is absolutely packed with the senses. Chadwick also is skilled at writing just the perfect amount of description and interspersing it with dialogue" - Bookfoolery and Babble

"What makes The Greatest Knight exceptional is the consistently pitch-perfect way in which its medieval characters think, feel and behave." - HistoricalNovels.info

"I really enjoyed reading the story of a man who tends to be a secondary character but absolutely deserves to have his story told... Everyone who has raved about Elizabeth Chadwick as an author of historical novels is right. " - Devourer of Books

"The Greatest Knight provides the kind of "real life" storytelling of times past for which all historical novels should strive. " - ForeWord

"Chadwick has done an amazing job of portraying the life of William Marshal." - Review From Here

"Fans of Jean Plaidy, Phillipa Gregory, Sharon Kay Penman will enjoy Elizabeth Chadwick's books. Her historical facts are well researched and her writing draws you into the story. Once you start reading you can't put it down." - Hollywood Today

"Luckily for all of us, we have an author like Elizabeth Chadwick to raise [William Marshall] back up out of obscurity and give him a dignified place of honor in history!" - Booklust

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402228643
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/1/2009
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 560
  • Sales rank: 17,236
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Elizabeth Chadwick (UK) is the author of 20 historical novels, including The Greatest Knight, The Scarlet Lion, A Place Beyond Courage, Lords of the White Castle, Shadows and Strongholds, The Winter Mantle, and The Falcons of Montabard, four of which have been shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists' Awards.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 1074 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(419)

4 Star

(330)

3 Star

(159)

2 Star

(81)

1 Star

(85)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 1079 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 7, 2010

    Fairy tales aren't history

    If you like fairy tales this is the book for you. If you are looking for good historical fiction, pass this by. Ms. Chadwick, I realize is writing fiction, but she has failed to research her facts about the man, and the times. For instance, William's father's name was not Marshal. Marshal was a title, his father's name was John Fitz Gilbert. The name Marshal was not granted to William as a sir name until later in his life and was never given to his father.

    Ms. Chadwwick tells of Elanor of Aquitain riding side saddle. The side saddle was not invented until several centuries later. Perhaps that is a minor issue, however, I believe if you are writing historical fiction, you should be sure of your history.

    83 out of 111 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 8, 2011

    The Greatest Knight

    This is an extremely well written book by an amazing author. It fills us in on the first 40~ years of Williams life. The second half, and a stand alone novel in its own, is the Scarlet lion.
    It may have some small historic inaccuracies as previously notes, but it is an absolute page turner, no effort required!

    10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 17, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    THE GREATEST KNIGHT Elizabeth Chadwick

    This is a wonderful story of William Marshall, a Knight with King Richard.
    I did not know much about this period of English history and this book was
    very informative. William Marshall was definitely a MAN OF HONOR. He kept his word to whomever it was given. He was a personal friend of Eleanor of Aquataine. He is later accused of having an affair with the Princess/wife of the young king. Later in life he marries Isabella, a duchess, mainly for her lands. But he falls in love with her and they have a most unusual relationship for this period of time. The follow-up book is THE SCARLET LION. I will be reading it very soon.

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2012

    Oops

    Sorry but the review that states the author was wrong about the father and son titles is not true. The Title Marshal was recieved while his father was working for king stephen and passes onto the eldest son. So i guess you shouldnt accuse others of not researching well enough

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 29, 2010

    Chivalry at it's best!

    This was my first Elizabeth Chadwick read and it will not be my last. I immensely enjoyed this book. The story of William Marshal was a page turner. Chivalry at it's best!

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 27, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Great Read

    Really great book. Kept me entertained all the way.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2012

    LOVED his book!

    I'm a big fan of medieval history and historical fiction, and I've come across references to William Marshal in many books. It was wonderful to read his story. Well-written, and so interesting that I started reading "The Scarlet Lion", the end of Marshal's story, as soon as I finished this book. That was terrific, too!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2012

    William Marshal

    A very exciting, fast paced read. Could'nt put the book down.
    Was sorry it had to end, but wait a minute, this is first in a series yea!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2012

    Loved it

    Great book if you enjoy this time period. Looking forward to readind Chadwicks newest book

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    Historical fiction readers must read

    Elizabeth Chadwick developes this characteer so well that I didn't want the book to end. I am currently reading the sequel Scarlet Lion.
    It is set in the late 1100 through early 1200's in England, Ireland, and France; portraying the wars and court intrigue of the brother Kings Henry, Richard, and John as they fight for power and land maniipulating The Greatest Knight each in their turn.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2012

    Good Historical Fiction

    I typically read about queens and kings, this was refreshing.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 22, 2012

    Wonderful book! Go for it!

    Elizabeth Chadwick puts the reader right in medieval England with her eye for historical detail and and believable historical characters. She is a great story teller who brings to vivid life a turbulent period in English history. Her book is a must read for anyone who likes historical fiction.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2012

    Good book

    I enjoyed this book. I am a diverse reader and enjoy period novels, but I felt like this book took me along time to read. I loved the character development, but I felt like the middle got muddeled with non important characters... I will read the second book, but I wont have the expectations of a "can't put it down" book. All in all was a good book.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2012

    Well worth reading.

    Interesting and does a good job helping the reader feel a part of the story. Occasionally gets stuck in somewhat slow detail, but overall very enjoyable.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2012

    A Little Boring

    This book was promising at the start but I ended uprapidlyscanning the last 1/3 of the book because I was ready for it to be over.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 15, 2011

    Highly Recommend

    This was a free book and not sure what I was getting.
    Turns out I got a great book. A well told story about The Greatest Knight. After finishing reading this book I googled the Knight and was fascinated with how aligned the book I had just read was with history.
    I don't normally read this type of book but am glad I did and recommend it to others.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Great historical biography

    I wasn't real sure I would like this book when I downloaded. It was fantastic reading with adventure that keeps one on thier seat. Hard to put down book. I love history and I love biographies. This is combined in this book. I have read some about William Marshall and most was dry reading. Elizabthe Chadwick makes it fun reading.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 26, 2012

    Great read is you want to escape to a long lost age when some knights were bold and others vilains

    If you're looking for a few evenings of escape from the "real" world into an age when Kings fought for their kingdoms and there were good bold knights who struggled against tremendous odds and won, then by all means, this is a great read.
    You will get a different view of Richard the Lion Hearted and his brother who inspired the Magna Carta. You may want to check out Lion in Winter after your done.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2012

    440 pages

    440 Pages of awesomeness. Loved it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 5, 2012

    Interesting

    Good story giving one a feel for the Middle Ages and the history of France and England during the Norman period. (I had some problems with the Nook Color showing some pages and I had to go forward and then page back to get the right pages. Maybe this is due to the book's formatting or my Nook going on the blink?) I especially like the characterizations.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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