The untold story of the extraordinary queen who championed Joan of Arc.
Politically astute, ambitious, and beautiful, Yolande of Aragon, queen of Sicily, was one of the most powerful women of the Middle Ages. Caught in the complex dynastic battle of the Hundred Years War, Yolande championed the dauphin's cause against the forces of England and Burgundy, drawing on her savvy, her statecraft, and her intimate network of spies. But the enemy seemed invincible. Just as French hopes dimmed, an astonishingly courageous young woman named Joan of Arc arrived from the farthest recesses of the kingdom, claiming she carried a divine message-a message that would change the course of history and ultimately lead to the coronation of Charles VII and the triumph of France.
Now, on the six hundredth anniversary of the birth of Joan of Arc, this fascinating book explores the relationship between these two remarkable women, and deepens our understanding of this dramatic period in history. How did an illiterate peasant girl gain access to the future king of France, earn his trust, and ultimately lead his forces into battle? Was it only the hand of God that moved Joan of Arc-or was it also Yolande of Aragon?
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||6.30(w) x 9.14(h) x 1.06(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
What People are Saying About This
Praise for The Maid and the Queen by Nancy Goldstone:
“A dual biography of two fascinating medieval women with the descriptive energy of a novel.”
—USA Today (An Editor's Book Pick)
“Goldstone has peeled back the nostalgic drapery of The Maid of Orléans, and tells the most complete history of Joan of Arc that I have ever read. . . . Gripping and informative and should be the next book you read.”
—Sacramento/San Francisco Book Review
“With compelling storytelling, Goldstone colorfully weaves together the tales of these two women [Yolande of Aragon and Joan of Arc]-one rich, one poor; one educated, one illiterate; one worldly, one simple-whose powerful personalities and deep allegiance to France helped shape the country's future.”
“Goldstone's vivid retelling of Joan's astounding victories and her capture and martyrdom by the English is as gripping as ever . . . [A] knowledgeable and accessible account of a turning point in French history.”
“[Nancy's] entertaining narrative will intrigue general readers interested in the Middle Ages, Joan of Arc (whose 600th birthday is this year), or biographies of royal figures or women in history.”
“Goldstone adds an enlightening new chapter to a legendary saga and rescues another unjustly neglected woman from the dust pile of conventional history.”
“Attention, ‘Game of Thrones’ fans: The most enjoyably sensational aspects of medieval politics—double-crosses, ambushes, bizarre personal obsessions, lunacy and naked self-interest—are in abundant evidence in Nancy Goldstone's The Maid and the Queen. . . .Thanks to this book, a bit more of [Yolande's] remarkable life has been coaxed out into the open.”
—Laura Miller, Salon.com
“The mysterious and secret bond between the worldly and powerful Yolande of Aragon, queen of Sicily, and the transcendent Joan of Arc comes into glorious view in this meticulous, colorful study of their lives. A fascinating historical excursion, bursting with medieval flavor.”
—Margaret George, author of Elizabeth I
“A wonderful medieval tapestry of a book that tells the still-amazing story of Joan of Arc, a peasant girl-turned-warrior who saves her king and France, and the pivotal role played by yet another extraordinary woman, Yolande of Aragon, queen of Sicily, whenin this time of tumult and treachery Joan rose to such unexpected power.”
—Jill Jones, author of Eiffel's Tower
“A lively, fast-paced and fascinating account of Joan's story, weaving together the labyrinthine intrigues of medieval politics, the real story behind a medieval fairy tale and the astonishing events that led a young peasant girl from the command of an army to a fiery death at the hands of the English.”
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Many of the ideas in Goldstone's book are original and compelling. Everyone who wants to understand Joan of Arc, and 15th Century France should read this book. This book presents the relationship between the Queen of Sicily and Charles the dauphin more comprehensively and accessibly than I have seen anywhere else. Regardless of the extent you agree with Goldstone's theory of how Joan of Arc was able to reach the dauphin and convince him to let her attempt to break the siege, no discussion of Joan of Arc is now complete without addressing it. Very well written, strongly researched, detailed but accessible. I hope this book inspires a new generation of study of this incredible story.
It is an historical biography. Reviewers should not be misleading readers by calling this a novel which implies it is fiction!
In the novel THE MAID AND THE QUEEN, author Nancy Goldstone proposes that Yolande of Aragon, Queen of Sicily, was a reckoning force behind Joan of Arc’s rise to power. It is an interesting premise and forms the basis of this novel about these two very remarkable women. The author has successfully blended their lives together, crossing paths amid the convoluted machinations of royal courts, political aspirations, and military secrets. Could these two women truly have met and known each other? Of course. How else could a poor young woman from an obscure town in France gain the introductions necessary to reach the loftiest heights of royal power? The author does her research to make this a very compelling possibility. Yolande of Aragon was the wife of Louis II, a member of the French royal family and King of Sicily. With her husband embroiled in fights in Italy for his claim to the kingdom of Naples and The Hundred Year War, Yolande sought to help her husband and France any way she could. Thus, she used Joan of Arc. The connection between the two women was through the town of Domrémy in the duchy of Bar where Joan lived and Yolande’s mother who once held that duchy as her ancestral home. THE MAID AND THE QUEEN is a story told in three parts. The first part tells the life of Yolande, the second part focuses on the life of Joan, and the final part concludes with the latter part of Joan’s and Yolande’s life. The research is meticulous. The beauty and sadness of Joan’s story compliments the political events Yolande found herself embroiled in. There are plenty of gripping scenes and emotional passages. This is a fascinating novel about two powerful women, who were ahead of their time, struggling to survive in a world dominated by men. A very memorable read indeed.
Amazing facts about two women who played such a prominent part in history yet could not have been more raised more differently. Yolande, who becomes the Queen of Sicily, married for 17 years had been educated as men were at that time. Joan had no education at all. Yolande lived a privileged wealthy life, Joan was from an impoverished background yet these two women come together to affect history. Book is well written, interesting and very well researched. Fascinating to read about the madness of Charles 6th and the background into the political machinations at the time as England and France fought for what each was thought they were owed. Good book for people who are interested in Joan of Arc.
Nancy Goldstone has a way of making history come alive and you really get that feeling she completely understands her subject. This is not a novel and as with so many history books of the middle ages there are some assumptions, but I thought she made Joan of Arc more interesting, more of a regular person with character traits and flaws. People are usually more interesting when you can get a glimpse of their personality whether its good or bad. Goldstone has a way with words and she has done her homework.
Informative,detailed history of Joan of Arc.
Bad with the reaserch taking all of the story line. No excitment this could be used as a textbook
I'm still reading this book. So far, it is very interesting.
I thought this book was about Joan of Arc. It isn't, she is dead halfway through the book. Absolutely no story at all, just a boring stating of facts. Who could make Joan if Arc boring! Terrible!!
Ive read the sample and i liked it and i need a book for a report.can anyone tell me how may pages the full versian has? Thank you