Kenilworth by Walter Scott
No historian's Queen Elizabeth was ever so perfectly a woman as the fictitious Elizabeth of Kenilworth," wrote Thomas Hardy. Scott's magnificent novel recreates the drama and the strange mixture of assurance and profound unease of the age of Elizabeth through the story of Amy Robsart. A woman of great beauty and integrity, Amy is married to the Earl of Leicester, one of the queen's favorites, who must keep his marriage secret or else incur royal displeasure. Rich in character, melodrama, and romance, Kenilworth is rivaled only by the great Elizabethan dramas.