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Average Review. Write a Review. Shadow on the Crown: A Novel 4. I admittedly love historical fiction about British royalty, but I also admit I want it well researched and well-written. This novel delivers on every level. Taking on the largely mysterious lives of the Pre-Norman Aethelred and Queen Emma, Bracewell does a superb job of keeping your attention. The action moves at a swift, attention-grabbing pace. This is a rare book where I lost track of time, only to be disappointed I was almost finished. Be warned, however, that keeping track of the very similiar names and complex relationships can take time; however, once you have it I realize this is a planned trilogy, but the wait for Book Two will be difficult.

I hope Bracewell has made much progress with that second novel. StephWard More than 1 year ago 4. After being thrown into a new land and a new kingdom, she must deal with a husband who doesn't trust her, stepchildren who despise her, and another woman who will do anything to get her hands on the crown. Emma must learn to adapt to her new role as Queen and she makes alliances with men at court in order to win the love of her English people.

Soon Emma finds herself falling in love with a man who is not her husband, the king, all while dealing with the dangerous threat of a Viking invasion that would threaten not only her role as Queen, but her life as well. I don't normally read much historical fiction, but this book's description had me intrigued as it was set in medieval England and the surrounding area. I thought that a book with a strong female lead during that time would prove to be fascinating.

Shadow on the Crown

Well, I was definitely not disappointed with this book. Emma proves to be a strong young woman who must mature and adapt to her new life quickly. She is brave, courageous, loyal, and self-assured - all great qualities for a Queen and as the novel's leading lady. The other characters weren't as rounded as she was, but they all provided the required situations and relational ties - both good and bad - that Emma needed in order to grow as a character.

The setting was perfect and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the time period as well as the varying locales found throughout the novel. The writing was what really got to me. The author has a magical way of writing that draws the reader into the scenario at hand - whatever it may be. I found myself easily imagining the story unfolding while I felt I was amongst the characters. I could shut my eyes and see what the author was describing, which is a marvelous trait that not all writers have.

Patricia Bracewell

The writing itself was wonderful and had a solid plot and pace that felt natural. Overall, I loved this magnificent adventure back in time to witness the brave life of Emma and the opportunity to love her and root for her throughout the book. I very highly recommend this novel to fans of historical fiction as well as to readers who love a fantastic story told by a truly enchanting author.

Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. Aethelred already paranoid and mistrusting of everyone around him turns his anger towards his young wife.


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Emma learns fast that she must tread lightly and that having a son would be the only way to secure her position but even she can predict what Aethelred might do next. He also knows he should fear that Emma bears a son to replace him in line for the throne because his father has no love for his eldest son and is constantly berating and humiliating him in public.

Emma is thrown to wolves when she comes to England. Emma knows she needs to win the hearts of the people of England and forge some alliances with some influential men because Swein Forkbeard and the Vikings are knocking at the front doors and ready to take over England in revenge for the St. Bracewell does a remarkable job mixing the real events in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle with her own imagination without detracting from the heart of the story.

She weaves a story of innocence lost, treachery, hope and love that ends with Emma realizing that she must do whatever needs to be done to make her son the next king. This was a refreshing storyline and I look forward to the next installment. DRC was received via publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Her older sister had been the original choice, however, her mother felt that she was not strong enough to fill the position. Emma knows all that is as stake for her and for all the people involved an she approaches her marriage with open arms and a willing heart. The King was married before and has eleven children from what appears to be a rather cold and loveless marriage.

Emma is very wise and mature for her age as she 'navigates' her way through the political issues surrounding the King. She finds herself with a rather cold husband who seems to be fairly disinterested in his younger children. I was impressed with this book and once I began reading I had trouble putting it down. I was very surprised to see that this is the authors first book as it is so well presented and is an easy flowing read.

I also discovered that it is the first of a trilogy and look forward to reading more of Emma Queen of England. Mirella More than 1 year ago Emma of Normandy, the great-aunt of William the Conqueror, was wife to two English Kings, and mother to two others. King Aethelred the Unready sought her hand in marriage to secure Normandy as an ally to England.

Despite the fact he dislikes her, she bears him two sons, Alfred and Edward the Confessor. When Aethelred died, Canute the Great showed came knocking at her door seeking marriage. This she did, alienating her sons, shattering their trust in her, and rendering their relationship cold and distant from that day forward. Emma reigned happily as Canute's queen for eighteen years.

Together they had one son, Hardicanute. When Canute died, however, all promises made seemed to hold no weight.

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Discord broke out between all their sons from both marriages as they battled young Hardicanute for the crown. After much bloodshed, both sons of Canute, as well as her son Alfred, were killed. Her son Edward the Confessor, who wisely stayed out of the conflict and never sought the throne, ended up with the crown of England. From Viking attacks to deadly family conflicts, this novel is so brilliantly written that I could not put it down.

world's end girlfriend: give me shadow, put on my crown.

I was engaged to the very end. Amid a hostile court, Emma perseveres and struggles to make her way and define her role. It is a story of love, hate, betrayal, and perseverance. Riveting from start to finish.

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Anonymous More than 1 year ago I love this story! Will read the next books. Very well done,great story teller. Anonymous More than 1 year ago This story has a strong heroine who has to navigate a rather treacherous path. I know the author has embellished the history to make it interesting, but it feels authentic. Yes royal marriages may not have been the romantic love relationships we may think they should be, especially with biases due to lineage that may have been felt in some regions within England. I like the liberties that this author has taken and feel the story is believeable and interesting and makes Emma more realistic to readers.

What a wonderful journey the reader goes on with multiple points of view given. It allows the reader perpective for motivations for various people who interact with the main characters. We see lots of envy, jealousy, and sadly the pain and suffering of royal family members.

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Life is no picnic for these royals. We see pains felt by rivals and are able to see the extremes to which they will go to better their situation. I look forward to all future installments of this trilogy. This is a book for anyone who enjoys historical fiction such as ones about King Arthur. I'm familiar with William the Conquer who is descended from these people.

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Shadow on the Crown (The Emma of Normandy, Book 1) :HarperCollins Australia

But, that is about as far back as my English history knowledge really goes. This was a brutal time period. I know that in this time period women were little more than property. Men often took what they felt was rightfully theirs and sometimes did so by force. Keeping a mistress on the side was common place, and wives were expected to look the other way.

But honestly, this took that idea to a whole new level. It was extremely graphic, but I was reminded that even in the historical fiction time period I tend to read, women were still progressing forward. I loved Emma. I think she knew from the start that her place as wife and Queen would not be easy. She was a bargaining tool and nothing more. At any moment, someone could go back on the agreement made when she was married and place her in danger. But, she also held power that women before her lacked. She was made Queen and gave birth to a son that contested the line of heirs. She never wavered in her beliefs to get what she felt she deserved.

King Athelred was an interesting character. There were times that I thought if he gave Emma half a chance he might actually grow to love her. But, all he can see is his resentment and fear. His own paranoia and delusions are really what drive this story to his breaking point. He refuses to see reason from any of his advisers.

He is convinced his sons are trying to take the thrown from him. His thought process and actions lead to so many horrible repercussions. This is suppose to be the first in a series.