A child born in the plague year of 1348, abandoned and raised within the oppressive walls of a convent, Alice Perrers refused to take the veil, convinced that a greater destiny awaited her. Ambitious and quick witted, she rose above her obscure beginnings to become the infamous mistress of Edward III. But always, essentially, she was alone...
Early in Alice’s life, a chance meeting with royalty changes everything: Kindly Queen Philippa, deeply in love with her husband but gravely ill, chooses Alice as a lady-in-waiting. Under the queen’s watchful eye, Alice dares to speak her mind. She demands to be taken seriously. She even flirts with the dynamic, much older king. But she is torn when her vibrant spirit captures his interest...and leads her to a betrayal she never intended.
In Edward’s private chambers, Alice discovers the pleasures and paradoxes of her position. She is the queen’s confidante and the king’s lover, yet she can rely only on herself. It is a divided role she was destined to play, and she vows to play it until the bitter end. Even as she is swept up in Edward’s lavish and magnificent court, amassing wealth and influence for herself, becoming an enemy of his power-hungry son John of Gaunt, and a sparring partner to resourceful diplomat William de Windsor, she anticipates the day when the political winds will turn against her. For when her detractors voice their hatred,and accusations of treason swirl around her,threatening to destroy everything she has achieved, who will stand by Alice then?
Includes a readers guide
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
As a prolific reader and ex-history teacher, Anne O’Brien has been lucky to fulfil her ambition to write historical romances. Her first success was a 400 word love story about a garden for Mills & Boon–an auspicious start! Anne lives with her husband in an eighteenth-century cottage. It is a place that gives her much inspiration and many sources for her writing. Anne often makes time to visit old houses, gardens and priories to absorb atmosphere for her novels.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I truly enjoyed Anne O’Brien’s interpretation of Alice Perrer’s life. It was written with a non-judgmental tone, providing an unbiased and fascinating description of her life. The King's Concubine is an engaging novel, written in first person narrative and an easy-to-read style that allows the reader to completely immerse themselves in the story. The author skilfully portrayed the main characters so that they were believable. As with all good tales, there must always be a fascinating antagonist, and in this novel, there were several, but most enjoyable were Princess Joan and Princess Isabella. Understandably, both women were highly resentful of Alice’s influence over their father and the author did a fabulous job demonstrating their animosity. Through their actions and bitter words, I could understand how strongly family and friends reacted to Alice’s presence in the king’s life. Despite the fact that history has portrayed Alice Perrers in the most unflattering light – ugly, ambitious, ruthless, power-hungry, and greedy, the author was able to demonstrate Alice’s softer side – her loyalty to the king and queen, her need to protect and fend for herself, her need to support her children and house herself should the king discard her. It is also fair to keep in mind that Alice was surrounded by strong, duplicitous men as eager for wealth and power than she was. Women in that era were easily attacked and Alice's success in accumulating wealth provided ample fodder. Anne O’Brien did an exceptional job of balancing fact with fiction as attested in the explanation at the end. This is biographical fiction at its best. A fascinating and intriguing story, highly recommended.
Well written book about the miraculous journey of a common born Alice that rises in ranks through trials and tribulations to become the favorite of Queen Phillippa and the known mistress of King Edward.