By Anne O'Brien
A baby born in the plague yr of 1348, abandoned and raised in the oppressive partitions of a convent, Alice Perrers refused to take the veil, confident higher future awaited her. Ambitious and fast witted, she rose above her vague beginnings to turn into the infamous mistress of Edward III. yet consistently, basically, she used to be alone...
Early in Alice’s lifestyles, an opportunity assembly with royalty alterations every thing: Kindly Queen Philippa, deeply in love along with her husband yet gravely unwell, chooses Alice as a lady-in-waiting. Under the queen’s watchful eye, Alice dares to talk her mind. She calls for to be taken seriously. She even flirts with the dynamic, a lot older king. But she is torn while her vivid spirit captures his interest...and leads her to a betrayal she by no means intended.
In Edward’s deepest chambers, Alice discovers the pleasures and paradoxes of her position. She is the queen’s confidante and the king’s lover, but she will be able to depend purely on herself. It is a divided function she was once destined to play, and he or she vows to play it till the sour end. Even as she is swept up in Edward’s lavish and luxurious courtroom, collecting wealth and effect for herself, turning into an enemy of his power-hungry son John of Gaunt, and a sparring accomplice to creative diplomat William de Windsor, she anticipates the day while the political winds will flip opposed to her. For while her detractors voice their hatred,and accusations of treason swirl round her,threatening to smash every thing she has completed, who will stand through Alice then?
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Additional resources for The King's Concubine: A Novel of Alice Perrers
No. I gave up ready. ’ Edward’s shock was once overlaid through disquiet. no longer relatively disapproval, yet now not far flung. stable! That was once what i needed. may he order me to head? ‘I could quite you weren’t right here. i'd be on my own. ’ no longer relatively an order to go away, even supposing I doubted he may see the subtlety… My answer was once as flat as Wykeham’s new paving within the nice courtroom at Kings Langley. ‘Time for mirrored image is nice, my lord. and i've mirrored a lot. ’ I positioned a touch of chunk into the phrases. ‘Over the 2 months i've got reflected—since you final spoke with me. ’ ‘Two months? ’ ‘It is greater than months because you buried Philippa and close your self up the following. ’ The vertical line dug among his brows. ‘I had now not realised…’ ‘Then you'll want to. It’s some distance too lengthy for a King to isolate himself from his topics. ’ I waited to determine if the Plantagenet mood might floor, and used to be disillusioned whilst it didn’t. My luck used to be now not a undeniable factor, even if I had suggestion lengthy over this as I had unpacked my outfits within the new rooms that were instantly put aside for me—Latimer used to be not anything if no longer an effective steward. If Edward rejected me now, how should still I strength him to keep in mind me? Sexual attract? now not that. He was once too solitary, too worn down. Later possibly, yet seduction used to be no longer but the trail ahead. Stern admonitions—not that both. Plantagenets didn't react good to stern admonitions from their matters, even their fanatics. Compassion? No—he may see that as pity. i used to be right here to attract Edward again from the threshold of no matter what hell he had made for himself, with chilly good judgment. Had I a view to my position at court docket? my very own monetary safety? after all I had. yet my destiny and Edward’s therapeutic needn't be fullyyt separate. I had no guilt as I poured cups of spiced wine—no longer hot yet nonetheless palatable—and held one out. He took it instantly. ‘I am contemplating leaving Havering the next day to come. Drink with me to my secure trip. ’ i didn't smile. i used to be brisk. ‘Leaving…? ’ ‘There’s not anything to maintain me the following now. ’ ‘Where…? ’ ‘Ardington. i've got a brain to work out if it fits me to stay there completely. ’ Edward didn't answer. So i'd stir the pot a bit extra. I sat, even if he did not—such a breach of royal etiquette! —sipped the wine, inspected one of many cherry cakes at the plate and bit into it. ‘This is scrumptious. Come, Edward. ’ Making planned use of his identify. ‘I can’t devour a majority of these myself. ’ He sat, yet now not shut, concerning me as though I had reworked right into a looking cat that had simply unsheathed it claws. ‘Why are you going? ’ ‘I am now not a royal damsel. i'm really not wanted. ’ I permit the silence play out, completing the tart, licking my hands, yet in a businesslike demeanour. after which: ‘Have you considered me in any respect during the earlier weeks, Edward? i feel now not. What have you ever been doing? ’ ‘I were thinking…’ His voice trailed off. ‘I count on you’ve been taking into account all you’ve achieved,’ I saw. ‘All that you’ve performed because the day you eliminate your mother’s authority and seized the ruling of britain on your personal palms.