Genre: Adult, Historical Non-Fiction Publication.Date September 2nd 2014 Pages: 400 Published By: NAL Trade Author Leslie Carroll Inglorious Royal Marriages on Goodreads My review copy: Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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It’s no secret that the marriages of monarchs are often made in hell. Here are some of the most spectacular mismatches in five hundred years of royal history....
In a world where many kings, queens, and princes lacked nothing but true love, marital mismatches could bring out the baddest, boldest behavior in the bluest of bloodlines. Margaret Tudor, her niece Mary I, and Catherine of Braganza were desperately in love with chronically unfaithful husbands, but at least they weren’t murdered by them, as were two of the Medici princesses were. King Charles II’s beautiful, high-spirited sister “Minette” wed Louis XIV’s younger brother, who wore more makeup and perfume than she did. Forced to wed her boring, jug-eared cousin Ferdinand, Marie of Roumania—a granddaughter of Queen Victoria—proved herself one of the heroines of World War I by using her prodigious personal charm to regain massive amounts of land during the peace talks at Versailles.
Brimming with outrageous real-life stories of royal marriages gone wrong, this is an entertaining, unforgettable book of dubious matches doomed from the start.
The queen had incurred a reputation for goodness, and maintained a truly regal sense of serenity and poise, even during this frightening anti-Catholic period, and even as her husband continued to dangle his infidelities in her face.
The English were convinced that Margaret was willfully scheming to prolong her marital conflict.
The man Henriette-Anne admired head and shoulders above all others was the one who literally stood that tall. But he was also the one man she could never, ever wed, despite an affection bordering on true love:her brother Charles.
Weaving together fascinating historical facts and highly entertaining bits and pieces of the lesser known, often scandalous information about Royals and their mismatched pairings, Inglorious Royal Marriages is just as intriguing and enlightening, as it is shocking and fun to read.
The latest in Leslie Carroll's series of books portraying Royal relationships and scandals of the court is yet another meticulously researched, ambitious and highly satisfying literary endeavor, filled with historical knowledge and drama. It's a historical non-fiction book, but one that doesn't read as one, in that it flows and entertains just like a captivating historical romance. It's a sort of a "peak behind the curtain", or - should I say - "peak through a keyhole" into the bedrooms of Royals - some more famous than others. It is also a memorable history lesson that any historical non-fiction fan will doubtlessly appreciate.
It is no big news that arranged Royal marriages were (in a depressing majority of cases) simply business arrangements and grand alliances designed to bring more stability, wealth, territory and/or fame to the parties involved. They were not relationships based on love, mutual respect or any kind of affection, and so their outcomes -more often than not - proved to be tragic and shameful. I knew that before I ventured into Inglorious Royal Marriages, though I certainly did not know just how badly some of them turned out. This was most definitely an enlightening and eye-opening read for me. I feel like I learned a lot and got to explore a more personal side of history.
When we read about history, the dry facts and distant -and therefore unrelatable - times make it all too easy to forget that historical figures were only humans, too. They had power and were expected to behave in certain ways, but they had feelings and often acted on them, as well. Leslie Carroll does a really great job exploring the human factor. The scandalous behaviors and betrayals. The infidelity and unfaithfulness of both the man and women forced into arranged marriages. The despair, hatred and mutual loathing. And the completely inappropriate, shocking , often devastating behavior and the consequences that followed.
If you're looking to find out more about historical figures such as Henry VI, Margaret Tudor, Charles II, Lady Jane Gray or Princess. Marie of Edinburgh, this is a just the book for you, particularly if you're interested to learn something you won't find in history books. Inglorious Royal Marriages is a well-seasoned, insightful and highly engrossing book for those seeking more than just dry facts and uninspired historical accounts.
About the Author
Leslie Carroll is the author of several works of historical nonfiction, women’s fiction, and, under the pen names Juliet Grey and Amanda Elyot, is a multipublished author of historical fiction. Her nonfiction titles include Royal Romances, Royal Pains, Royal Affairs, and Notorious Royal Marriages. She is also a classically trained professional actress with numerous portrayals of virgins, vixens, and villainesses to her credit, and is an award-winning audio book narrator.A frequent commentator on royal romances and relationships, Leslie has been interviewed by numerous publications, including MSNBC.com, USA Today, the Australian Broadcasting Company, and NPR, and she was a featured royalty historian on CBS nightly news in London during the royal wedding coverage of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. She also appears as an expert on the love lives of Queen Victoria, Marie Antoinette, Catherine the Great, and Napoleon on the television series “The Secret Life of [fill in the name of famous figure]” for Canada’s History Channel. Leslie and her husband, Scott, divide their time between New York City and Washington, D.C.
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