The Lady of the Rivers (Cousins' War Series #3)

The Lady of the Rivers (Cousins' War Series #3)

4.2 178
by Philippa Gregory

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A story rich in passion and legend, The Lady of the Rivers is the story of Jacquetta, Duchess of Bedford, a woman who navigated a treacherous path through the battle lines in the Wars of the Roses.

When Jacquetta is married to the Duke of Bedford, English regent of France, he introduces her to a mysterious world of learning and alchemy. Her only friend in

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A story rich in passion and legend, The Lady of the Rivers is the story of Jacquetta, Duchess of Bedford, a woman who navigated a treacherous path through the battle lines in the Wars of the Roses.

When Jacquetta is married to the Duke of Bedford, English regent of France, he introduces her to a mysterious world of learning and alchemy. Her only friend in the great household is the duke’s squire Richard Woodville, who is at her side when the duke’s death leaves her a wealthy young widow. The two become lovers and marry in secret, returning to England to serve at the court of the young King Henry VI, where Jacquetta becomes a close and loyal friend to his new queen.

The Woodvilles soon achieve a place at the very heart of the Lancaster court, though Jacquetta can sense the growing threat from the people of England and the danger of their royal York rivals. As Jacquetta fights for her king and her queen, she can see an extraordinary and unexpected future for her daughter Elizabeth: a change of fortune, the throne of England, and the white rose of York. . . .

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Editorial Reviews

Philippa Gregory's third Cousins' War historical novel (after The Red Queen and The White Queen) tracks the fascinating story of Jacquetta of Luxembourg (1416-1472). Born to aristocracy and related to the English royal family, she first married the John of Lancaster, the Duke of Bedford, best remembered today as the prosecutor of Joan of Arc, whose execution Jacquetta witnessed. Still a teenager at her husband's death, she defies convention and ignores the king's will by secretly marrying a squire. This alliance of love produces sixteen children; one of them, Elizabeth Woodville, becomes the Queen Consort of King Henry IV. Gregory follows Jacquetta with sympathy and historical fidelity; indeed, modern readers will be heartened that her story's human issues have not blurred over time.

Product Details

Publication date:
Cousins' War Series, #3
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

Philippa Gregory is the author of several bestselling novels, including The Other Boleyn Girl, and is a recognized authority on women’s history. She studied history at the University of Sussex and received a Ph.D. at the University of Edinburgh. She welcomes visitors to her website,

Brief Biography

Yorkshire, England
Date of Birth:
January 9, 1954
Place of Birth:
Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa
B.A. in history, Sussex University, 1982; Ph.D., 18th-century popular fiction, Edinburgh, 1984

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The Lady of the Rivers 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 176 reviews.
onthegogma More than 1 year ago
I have really enjoyed reading this book. I have read the Red Queen and the White Queen, and would recommend all three. However, I wish Phjilippa Gregory had written this book first. If you are new to these books read The Lady of the Rivers first.
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Jacquetta is married to the much older Duke of Bedford, who is the English Regent of France. He has heard of her gift of second sight and introduces her to a world of education, which was not exactly the forte of women in this era. Jacquette was also introduced to alchemists working for the Duke. When the Duke passes away he leaves Jacquetta a very wealthy widow. Her only friend turns out to be Richard Woodville, the Duke's squire, who is at Jacquetta's side when her husband dies. The two fall in love and marry without the knowledge of the King, which is a no-no, for the King has to approve all royal marriages. They are fined and sent away from the Court of King Henry VI but are welcomed back eventually and Jacquetta becomes the Queen's closest confidante. The Woodvilles soon become friends of the Court although Jacquetta, in between childbearing (11 children), senses the growing threat from the royal rivals (Lancaster and York). The House of Lancaster tries to keep the Court intact but, the House of York want the throne and, during all this, the King is taken ill. Queen Margaret turns to untrustworthy people for help and the Duke of York threatens to overturn the kingdom. Jacquetta and her husband fight for the King and Queen and for their daughter Elizabeth Woodville. Jacquetta has foreseen a fabulous life for Elizabeth including a fortune and maybe the throne of England sometime in the future. This author is an acclaimed writer of British History. The Lady of the Rivers is another about the Lancasters and the Yorks who were both after the throne of England. These people were all related to each other as the readers can see when the family trees are printed. But, Ms. Gregory is a master storyteller and Elizabeth Woodville is the heroine who will become Queen when everything is figured out. This is a powerful story which is very passionate and as the author tells the legendary story of Jacquetta and Elizabeth Woodville the reader will become enthralled with the story of the Lady of the Rivers. Quill Says: This author is well-known in the field of English History. This book is part of a series called The Cousins' War, featuring the Plantagenets and tells of the Wars of the Roses, a very violent time in the history of the English Royals.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Since i'm typing this out on my nook i'll keep it brief. I'm a sucker for this genre. Even though the rational part of my brain recognizes Greggory as a sub-par author, I'm still typical drawn into her books which range from great (TOBG) to downright unreadable (Wildacre series). This falls somewhere in the middle, and also falls short of its sequel The White Queen. In TWQ I found the characters much more dynamic and well thought out. Elizabeth actually has an arc. She grows and changes ovee time. Here.... not so much. The only really interesting character here is probably Margaret of Anjou. Also, for a story that takes place in an incredibly interesting period of history, not much actual history happens here. A lot of family dynamics, Greggory's incredibly annoying insistance that all woman of history were victims of men... she does this in every book, I swear, and maybe the occassional historical event thrown into the backseat. I find it hard to believe someone as important as Lady Rivers was to the royal court would have so little to say about what was happening on her lands and in her country. This could have been so much better. Still, I think its worth reading if you've enjoyed Greggory's other novels or you're a fan of this genre. Maybe not worth buying, but i'd reccomend lending a copy if you are interested.
bookholiday More than 1 year ago
Great weekend read with great characters. Finished it in a couple of hours.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been a huge phillipa gregory fan ever since i read the other bolelyn girl and fell in love with it. This book definitely did not disappoint and i enjoyed reading it as a part of the trilogy based on the cousins wars. I liked it much better than the red queen and about as much as i enjoyed the white queen. Gregory really brings that time period to life and i particularly enjoyed the fact that it centers on a little known character from that time period. The story was engrossing and moved smoothly, i found it difficult to put down!
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1430 near Arras, France, in front of her great-niece fourteen year old Lady Jacquetta, Lady Jehanne asks her prisoner Joan to accept parole by reneging her vows from God and remaining at Lord Luxembourg's Castle of Beaurevoir. Though weary that she erred in crowning the king, Joan, still a country peasant at heart refuses. Jacquetta witnesses the execution of Joan declared a witch by the Duke of Bedford. In 1433 Jacquetta has no say as she is forced to marry recently widowed John, the English Duke Bedford Regent of France. He plans to use her powers to further his ambitions but dies before he can achieve his objective. Still a teen, Jacquetta is now a wealthy widow. The king and her family choose her next spouse, but Jacquetta refuses to obey. Instead she weds Richard Woodville. They have a happy marriage with many children as he serves King Henry VI at the royal court and she serves as the queen's loyal confident while anticipating after Henry the Lancaster dynasty will die too. The third Cousins' War historical thriller (see The Red Queen and The White Queen) is another interesting look at a strong woman who must conceal her fortitude in order to navigate the treacherous male waters. Lady Jacquetta is a fascinating protagonist as she learns from the execution of Joan and the marriage of the king's mother to a Tudor that being strong but smart is an asset even in a male only world. Genre fans will appreciate Philippa Gregory's entertaining medieval biographical fiction of an intelligent courageous woman who not only survives the War of the Roses; she observes her grandson become King of England. Harriet Klausner
DMAB46 More than 1 year ago
This is supposed to be either the 2nd or 3rd in the series, I think it should be the 1st since it tells you about the Baron & Lady Rivers. The history is right on and the storytelling is very interesting and bring you into it. I read it in one night. Also read the White Queen. I got this book because of the mini-series, The White Queen and I wanted to learn more about Lady Rivers, who is Queen Elizabeth's mother. If you to learn about history but in a story not just facts thrown at you then you will like this book and basically all books by Philippa Gregory. She gives you the historical facts in a storylike manner and makes you care about that time period and the people that were involved in that time period. Wish my highs chool history book was like this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a good contection to the others in the series. However, it didn't keep my interest as well as the previous books in this series.
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Good, a little more fantasy involved but interesting
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zss19 More than 1 year ago
I cannot decide whether I would suggest reading this book before reading The White Queen since the Lady of the River is the White Queen's mother. I realize these books are a progressive undertaking and are written as Philippa's interests expand. The interactions between the three heroines in all three books is exciting. Reaad on to the other two books in this series.
Crazycat47 More than 1 year ago
I really liked Philippa Gregory's The Red Queen, White Queen, The King Maker's Daughter, and The Lady of The Rivers. I would read all four of those books. These ladies were powerful women for the 1400s England.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I especially enjoyed that it was also Jaquetta's love story. Not particularly seeking power like the other queen stories but living in her moment.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago