Lionheart: A Novel
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Lionheart: A Novel

4.0 33
by Sharon Kay Penman
     
 

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
“The great Crusader king Richard the Lionheart comes alive in all his complex splendor in this masterpiece of medieval tapestry.”—Margaret George
 
A.D. 1189. After the death of his father, Henry II, and the early demise of two of his brothers, Richard is crowned

Overview

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
“The great Crusader king Richard the Lionheart comes alive in all his complex splendor in this masterpiece of medieval tapestry.”—Margaret George
 
A.D. 1189. After the death of his father, Henry II, and the early demise of two of his brothers, Richard is crowned King of England and immediately sets off for the Holy Land. This is the Third Crusade, marked by internecine warfare among the Christians and extraordinary campaigns against the Saracens. Richard’s surviving brother, the younger John, is left behind—and conspires with the French king to steal his brother’s throne. Only their mother, Eleanor of Aquitaine, now freed from decades of captivity, remains to protect Richard’s interests and secure his destiny.
 
In this engrossing saga, Sharon Kay Penman delivers a novel of passion, intrigue, battle, and deceit. Lionheart is a sweeping tale of a heroic figure—feared by his enemies and beloved by those he commanded—who became a legend in his own lifetime.
 
“[Sharon Kay] Penman displays her usual grasp of sweeping historical events as well as an uncanny ability to get inside the hearts and minds of her real-life characters. Her reputation for character-driven, solidly detailed historicals is richly deserved.”—Booklist
 
“The beautifully described settings and the characters’ interactions are simply outstanding.”—The Historical Novels Review
 
“Penman takes historical writing to a whole new level.”—The Sacramento Bee
 
“[A] gritty, unsentimental, and richly detailed epic.”—Publishers Weekly

Don’t miss the exclusive conversation between Sharon Kay Penman and Margaret George at the back of the book.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345517562
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
01/01/2013
Pages:
624
Sales rank:
220,967
Product dimensions:
5.66(w) x 8.04(h) x 1.36(d)

Meet the Author

Sharon Kay Penman is the author of seven previous historical novels: When Christ and His Saints Slept, Time and Chance, Devil’s Brood, and four medieval mysteries set during the reign of Eleanor of Aquitaine. She lives in Mays Landing, New Jersey, and is working on A King’s Ransom, which will complete the story of Richard I.

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Lionheart 4 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 33 reviews.
Man_Of_La_Book_Dot_Com More than 1 year ago
"Lion­heart" by Sharon Kay Pen­man is a his­tor­i­cal fic­tion book about Richard I and the Third cru­sade. This is a well researched book which is fas­ci­nat­ing and exciting. Richard I, bet­ter known in his nom de guerre "Lion­heart" takes his vows seri­ously includ­ing the one to free Jerusalem from Salah-a-Din. He leaves his king­dom and together with King Philip of France they make their way, with their armies, to the holy land. "Lion­heart" by Sharon Kay Pen­man is his­tor­i­cal fic­tion at its best. The research is impres­sive and Ms. Pen­man doesn't try to fit the his­tory to her story, but writes the story around history. I have always been fas­ci­nated by Richard I or as he is bet­ter known Richard the Lion­heart. It was prob­a­bly the nick­name and "guest appear­ance" in Robin Hood which spurred up the imag­i­na­tion of an eight year old boy more than his deeds. The author brings King Richard to life, not only his bat­tle glory, but also the man in all his splen­dor, his sar­donic wit, bat­tle com­man­der genius and mis­un­der­stand­ing of women. Some­thing most men share. Richard, which thinks of noth­ing of sac­ri­fic­ing his own life, ago­nized to no end about his bat­tle plans and min­i­miz­ing casu­al­ties. The bat­tle scarred solider who under­stands and respects his ene­mies, but still under­stands the impor­tance of mak­ing an entrance, whether by land or by sea. "Richard began to curse, "Bleed­ing Christ! I wsa so sure that raven swine would hit us from the rear! Take over, Jaufre!" I enjoyed the descrip­tions of bat­tles, large and small, the tac­tics involved, the ago­niz­ing deci­sions com­man­ders must endure as well as the impos­si­ble logis­tics of tak­ing an army across the ocean with no means of sup­port. The author's goes into great length describ­ing Richard's suc­cess, some of it was luck, but most of it was metic­u­lous plan­ning and audac­ity both in the field of diplo­macy and war. While Richard I is cer­tainly the main fig­ure in the book, there are many oth­ers his­tor­i­cal fig­ures. Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, his mother, Richard's sis­ter Joana and his wife Beren­garia all have a major role in the novel, and are depicted in an inter­est­ing and involved manner. I enjoyed this book tremen­dously, but be aware that this is not an easy novel to read. There are many char­ac­ters, each of them a world of their own, com­plex, multi-faceted with strange and fas­ci­nat­ing rela­tion­ships among them. The book also includes polit­i­cal strug­gles and intense back-stories, together with the fight­ing (they always go together, don't they?). The book ended at the end of the Third Cru­sade, Ms. Pen­man stated that Richard I's life was so full that it would take more books to cover. I, for one, am look­ing for­ward to the rest. One of the ben­e­fits of hav­ing this blog is that I get intro­duce
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Penman tells this story beautifully, crafting a setting that is drenched in historical accuracy and enough intrigue to keep you turning pages.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful Book! Sharon Kay Penman has done it again and I can't wait for more! Make sure you check out her other books as well. This is Historical Fiction at its best!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been reading Sharon Kay Pennman 's books for over ten years and I always am left wanting more. I can't wait until the next installment!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It never ceases to amaze me the amount of resesearch Penman does and the way she can capture the readers attention and hold it for 600-plus pages!
harstan More than 1 year ago
Though he was born a spare to King Henry Plantagenet and Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, his older brother's failed revolt and subsequent death made Richard the heir. When he became king with the death of his sire, Richard began the Third Crusade to take back Outremer, the Holy Land after a brief stop in Sicily to rescue his sister. He has as much trouble with his alleged French allies as he has with the Saracen forces led by capable Saladin. In fact he and his adversary form a mutual admiration society of two as they respect each other's skills. Finally Richard knows it is time to go home as he hears rumors that his youngest brother John betrays him while he fights in the Holy Land. This is an exciting opening biographical fiction that humanizes the legendary Lionheart with little tidbits like his side trip to Sicily and his ignoring his wife Berengaria. Especially emphasized is the political intrigue within the Plantagenet family as his late oldest brother tried to take the throne form his father and his youngest brother has seemingly taken the throne from warring Richard. Sub-genre fans will enjoy this insightful well written medieval tale but will impatiently away the King's return. Harriet Klausner
CDowell More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent book that brought out the true story of one of England's greatest Kings, Richard I, The Lionheart. I always hated that they made Richard I out to be a bad king and this book shows how great a King he truly was and how he lived up to the warrior spirit of the time. This book was a great read and I recommend it to anyone interested in the crusades, England, and history in general.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good pacing and storytelling. Helped by the central character (Richard's) overall story, makes a good endpoint at the end of the 3rd Crusade. An upbeat tale. I suspect the follow-on, which deals with post-Crusader Richard, will be less fawning over this great commander, but flawed individual, and absentee king.
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Excellent book! Well written and researched. Love this author
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