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Obey your husband. Make him love you. This is your duty to me and to France.
With these words, King Philippe of France sent Princess Isabella to marry the dashing King Edward of England. She’s determined to fulfill her father’s injunction, but once wed, the young queen quickly abandons her romantic illusions: her husband has a secret, one that will stand between them and threatens to plunge England into civil war. As lonely Isabella grows into womanhood amid the deadly maelstrom...
Obey your husband. Make him love you. This is your duty to me and to France.
With these words, King Philippe of France sent Princess Isabella to marry the dashing King Edward of England. She’s determined to fulfill her father’s injunction, but once wed, the young queen quickly abandons her romantic illusions: her husband has a secret, one that will stand between them and threatens to plunge England into civil war. As lonely Isabella grows into womanhood amid the deadly maelstrom of Edward’s court, she rises above her despair and uses her clever mind and political acumen to unite the country. But when tensions with France rise, the young queen faces an impossible choice.
From bestselling author Colin Falconer comes the little-known story of a queen who took control of her destiny—and the throne.
Posted July 28, 2014
Posted January 14, 2014
I've read about Isabella's later years in a book by N. Gemini Sasson. Reading about her marriage to Edward II was truly enlightening.
Most of the time when queens are worried about their lack of attention from their husband it is because of a mistress. In Isabella's case, her problem is the king's best friend, who happens to be a little more than his best friend.
Ah the problems of royalty.
The even bigger problem Isabella faces is that she seems much smarter than her husband even as a girl in her teenage years.
It is impossible not to feel sorry for her. She was raised to be queen, and she had certain expectations, but Edward wasn't the King she thought she would be married to.
Even worse, it had to be difficult to be married to a man who didn't really want to be king in the first place and when his lover was killed, he took his anguish out on the nation, and it really fell on Isabella to save England.
It is no wonder she had to do what she did to save the throne.
This was a very fast paced novel, at times maybe a little too fast paced, but a very enjoyable read.
Posted January 12, 2014
First, I have a confession to make I have not finished this book yet and not fault to the book on that. There was a little hiccup and received the book a little late for me to get it finished but I still wanted to tell you all about the book. This is the first book I have read by this author and so far it is an enjoyable book to read and I am sure the rest will be just as good. I have not read an books by this author before but the subject matter caught my attention. Being a fan of historical fiction I have not read much on France so was excited to receive this book. The author is doing a good job with the historical aspect of the story and making so I am really getting to know Isabella. Isabella was a strong woman as I am learning from this story. If you are a historical fiction fan then I suggest this book for you.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 6, 2013
‘Isabella: Braveheart of France’ is a grand tale of the young French princess married off to Edward II of England. Yet Edward holds Piers Gaveston, his favorite, in higher esteem than his bride. Isabella grew up seeing the love between her father and mother, wanting a similar love for herself. Yet her marriage to Edward is no more than a duty to Edward and a never-ending heartache for Isabella. As a 12-year-old bride, Isabella is much more mature than Edward will ever be, and as she grows she learns more of the strength it takes to rule a country.
‘Isabella: Braveheart of France’ is a breathtaking story. I truly felt for Isabella, who was groomed to be a queen but had a husband who barely knew what to do with her as she wasn’t male. Unfortunately, as king, Edward had a royal duty to marry and produce offspring. He couldn't follow his heart anymore than Isabella could follow hers. Edward should never have been king as he felt he owed no one and he was owed everything without earning it. Isabella had the strength and fortitude to survive in a challenging court and thrive when her adopted country needed her. I was drawn in to Isabella’s world and felt her emotions as my own. Mr. Falconer has written an amazing story about a woman caught between worlds and who rises up to take the mantle she was born to wear.
Posted October 10, 2013
Isabella, Princess of France, is ordered by her father, King Philip IV, to obey and serve her husband no matter what the circumstances. For she represents France and any opposition would only provoke the insidious hostilities between England and France that have existed for centuries. Isabella is being married to King Edward II so that he can acquire Gascony as an English territory, for no other reason; add to that Isabella is only twelve years old when she marries Edward. But that is the least of her problems. For she yearns desperately for Edward to love her and all he does is ignore her, at least initially. Then with time, Edward discovers this young girl is far from a child in her political thinking and advice; in fact, she is astutely wise, observant and careful. Edward begins to value her as a counselor, yet it will be a long time before he considers her in a physical way. The obstacle is Edward’s great love, Piers Gaveston, and what a passion they share!
The nobles of England are totally disgusted by the King’s behavior and believe he gets all his advice from Gaveston. The drama intensifies as English coffers decline and civil war seems looming as well as other wars. The result is absolutely astounding with a new form of government rising, one that should be a system of checks and balances between the King and his nobles but in fact is otherwise. The outcome for Gaveston is devastating, despite Isabella’s advice that could best be summed up as “patience and caution.”
Edward then chooses another advisor who is as ruthless as one could possibly be, all for the sake of building up the economy for England – and himself – and lashing out at those who had hurt Edward so deeply with their treachery. He is the Despenser, who is also capable of destroying the loving relationship that Edward and Isabella had formed for a very short time, one which bore fruit in a royal Prince. Again, civil war is threatened over the cruelties that Despenser hands out and Isabella barely escapes becoming his next victim. Where she goes and how she manages to out-maneuver Edward and the Despenser is riveting reading. What Edward has really been doing is even more stunning, and the resolution of this intensifying conflict leaves the reader gaping and yet also laughing at the irony of it all.
Isabella: Braveheart of France is a gripping read because Colin Falconer is a master at creating an intriguing story filled with enough adventure, verbal sparring, ghastly punishments, secret plotting, and so much more that keep the reader furiously flipping the pages. The history is accurate with subtle interpretations in fictional form to add just the right touch to a period of English history too often overlooked! This is phenomenal historical fiction that is highly recommended. Once you read Colin Falconer, you’ll want to read everything he has ever written as well as what he will craft in the future!
Posted September 25, 2013
Queen Isabella of England was known as a she-Wolf. This was one queen who was beautiful, diplomatic, and smart! But she was also known to be ruthless, manipulative, and sometimes heartless.
Her father, King Philip IV of France schooled her politically and raised her to be wise and cautious. When she was twelve, he arranged for her to be married to England’s King Edward II. She had no idea the trouble she would face during the years of her marriage.
First, there was internal conflict between the king and his nobles. Second, her husband’s heart belonged to someone else – a male “mistress” named Piers Gaveston. To Piers, he gave not only all his love, leaving none for Isabelle, but also much of his wealth in land, jewels, and titles. This angered the nobles who did much to place restrictions upon the king.
Isabelle fell in love with Roger Mortimer, who worked with Isabelle to depose Edward. Edward was murdered and many believe that she even arranged to have Edward murdered, but that was never proven. Afterwards, Isabella and Roger spent lavishly as she made some unpopular political decision affection Scotland.
Meanwhile, Isabelle and Edward’s son, Edward III, grew to manhood. One of the first things he did was arrest and execute Roger Mortimer, and seizing control of the country for himself. Isabelle, estranged with her son, lived alone but in great style.
Author Colin Falconer has brought Isabelle’s story to life in his latest novel, Isabelle: Braveheart of France. He portrays this fascinating royal woman as strong and wise. Although history records her as cruel, manipulative, and ruthless, perhaps that is an unfair moniker considering all that she had to endure. I can’t imagine her humiliation as her husband flaunted his male lovers. The author does a wonderful job showing this to the readers.
Wonderful descriptive and succinct prose graces each page of this biographical novel.