(Giveaway!) The Kingmaker’s Daughter by Philippa Gregory

Please see the end of the review for how to enter for your copy of The Kingmaker’s Daughter!

(UK cover)

A blend of treachery, sorcery and devotion.

The Kingmaker’s Daughter by Philippa Gregory (Cousins’ War #4)
Simon & Schuster UK/Touchstone August 14, 2012
Hardcover 432 pages
Review copy provided by the publisher, thank you!
Burton Book Review Rating:

Spies, poison, and curses surround her… Is there anyone she can trust?
In The Kingmaker’s Daughter, #1 New York Times bestselling author Philippa Gregory presents a novel of conspiracy and a fight to the death for love and power at the court of Edward IV of England.

The Kingmaker’s Daughter is the gripping story of the daughters of the man known as the “Kingmaker,” Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick: the most powerful magnate in fifteenth-century England. Without a son and heir, he uses his daughters Anne and Isabel as pawns in his political games, and they grow up to be influential players in their own right. In this novel, her first sister story since The Other Boleyn Girl, Philippa Gregory explores the lives of two fascinating young women.

At the court of Edward IV and his beautiful queen, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne grows from a delightful child to become ever more fearful and desperate when her father makes war on his former friends. Married at age fourteen, she is soon left widowed and fatherless, her mother in sanctuary and her sister married to the enemy. Anne manages her own escape by marrying Richard, Duke of Gloucester, but her choice will set her on a collision course with the overwhelming power of the royal family and will cost the lives of those she loves most in the world, including her precious only son, Prince Edward. Ultimately, the kingmaker’s daughter will achieve her father’s greatest ambition.
Read my reviews of the earlier titles in the series:
The Kingmaker’s Daughter brings us another installment in the Cousins’ War series, this one focusing on the point of view from Anne Neville. Fans like myself of the history of the Wars of the Roses would recognize the Neville name as being closely connected to the Yorkist kings, as Richard Neville was the Kingmaker who helped put Edward IV on the throne of England.
This was a period of time where many factions were created and put down, and turn coats and traitors were just as easily made. There was never a pure period of peace, there always seemed to be a rivalry for the throne of England. Before this novel opens, Anne’s father had successfully ousted the Lancastrian Henry VI and his wife Margaret of Anjou to put the Yorkist family on the throne. Anne had grown up fearing this “bad queen” and feeling sorry for the “sleeping king”, but never once doubting the righteousness of the Yorkist claim. When the new King Edward chooses Elizabeth Woodville, the new Queen Elizabeth rises her huge family to greatness with lands and wealth which old lords and honorable nobles felt entitled to.
Philippa Gregory loves her Witchy Woodville girls, and they are back causing evil and torment to all those who stand in her path. The Woodvilles are of the upstart House of Rivers, and King Edward IV married Elizabeth Woodville, essentially a commoner, and sired many children with her. Alliances are made for these children, and unrest grows. King Edward seems to lead the country at the wishes of his witchy Queen, and it causes Anne’s father to become a turncoat himself as he becomes an ally to The Bad Queen (Margaret of Anjou). Anne is betrothed to her Lancastrian heir, Edward, and everything that she has been taught as a child has become overturned.
She is to be a Lancastrian with her marriage to Prince Edward. As most lovers of the story know, this new uprising fails, and long story in the end Anne finally does end up with Edward’s brother, Richard. Anne and her sister Isabel are now both married to King Edward’s royal brothers, and things should end happily ever after, if not for the Woodville clan.
Elizabeth Woodville was portrayed throughout Gregory’s novels as a witch, seductress, temptress.. and the same themes hold true in the new installment. Anne suffers greatly once she marries Richard, and each loss she attributes to the witchy Queen. As I neared the end of the novel, I had hoped for more for Anne, but it seemed that Elizabeth Woodville, even from her far sanctuary, had won the last battle.
There are many story lines weaved throughout, which fans of Gregory would remember such as the legend of Melusine, or the rumors that historians like to hate and refute, but Gregory always manages to turn facts and rumors into an entertaining story. I love the Wars of the Roses era and the Plantagenets far more than I do the Tudor era for all of the many side stories that would be a novel by themselves.  Even though I disliked both the juvenile style of the beginning of this book and the depressing way the book ended, I enjoyed this story a bit more than some of the others.

This time, I really felt the plight of the Neville sisters of Anne and Isabel, and I actually was sympathetic to Richard, whom some feel may have murdered those princes in the Tower (raises hand). There is so much history that we will never truly know, and historians will decipher letters and evidence as they see fit, and I love how Philippa Gregory brings to life an otherwise forgotten time period as she has with her Cousins’ War series. Since Gregory doesn’t bog down this story with many historical facts or details, the drama speaks for itself with its blend of treachery, sorcery and devotion and I can recommend this novel to any historical fiction fan wishing for an entertaining read, as well as it being suited for a young adult audience.


Discuss your opinions of the Wars of The Roses. Where would you have put yourself in the wars: Lancastrian or Yorkist? Or if you have read the other books in the Cousins’ War, which one was your favorite so far?
 Tell me how you are a follower of Burton Book Review.

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You must include your email address so that I can contact you if you win.

I will choose thoughtfully from the entries that have been successfully completed 😉

USA only! Contest ends September 19, 2012 and winner must respond to my email within 24 hours.



Filed under #histnov, 15th Century, 2012 Releases, 2012 Review, Anne Neville, Edward IV, Elizabeth Woodville, Jacquetta Woodville, Philippa Gregory, Richard III, Wars of the Roses

15 responses to “(Giveaway!) The Kingmaker’s Daughter by Philippa Gregory

  1. I've read all three of the books plus the non-fiction book that came out earlier this year about some of Gregory's research. I really liked the magical realism in The Lady of the Rivers best, although I did like Elizabeth Woodville in The White Queen a lot too. Jacquetta was such a fascinating character. Margaret Beaufort just really annoyed me.As for your question about which house I would fall in, I like the Lancasters a little bit better. abookishaffair(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. I have been so excited about this series and would LOVE to win a copy! Thanks!!Allisonmharper@hotmail.com

  3. I haven't read the other three books but was sent this one for review — I wonder if it'll be hard to get into having not read the other three?

  4. No, Audra, these really do not require reading in order. Each novel is told from a woman's point of view, these women being very close to the throne during the Wars of the Roses.Book 1 focused on Henry Tudor VII's mother, Book 2 focuses on Edward IV's wife, and Book 3 was on Edward IV's mother in law. Book 4 is on Edward IV's sis-in-law, so the time periods pretty much all overlap,(book 1 really would come later if we were thinking chronologically) just presented by a different person.And I've had different reactions to all of the books thus far, so my positive reaction this time may even coorelate to not totally loving some of the others, if that makes any sense. 😉

  5. I have read the first two books of "THE COUSINS WAR" and just ordered "THE LADY OF THE RIVER" I have a hard time choosing either of the first two books but I couldn't put either one down when I started reading each. My poor husband was mostly ignored because of my dedication but he bore with me. He is a University Professor and knows how when you are into a book,it is another world and you will return, I love your site and look forward to receiving the email announcing your site,I would love to receive a copy of "THE KINGMAKAER'S DAUGHTER by my fav Phillippa GregoryMary suekeemary@gmail.com

  6. Jen

    I don't know much about the War of the Roses, but I would like to read about it.

  7. I have read pretty much all of Philippa Gregory's books, so I'd like to get this one. I'm not a huge fan of the Cousins' War series, but I thought The Lady of the Rivers was the best one so far.As for where my allegiance would fall, I'd probably be one of those people just wishing they'd stop fighting and sort things out peacefully. Which is what happened in the end anyway.How am I a follower of BBR? Can't remember! I think someone recommended your blog, I checked it out and liked it, and have been following ever since.

  8. It *does* make sense and reassures me — very glad I didn't have a huge backlog to catch up on!

  9. I haven't read any of the three books yet. I have sort of read around this period. I read "Here Burns My Candle" by Liz Curtis Higgs, "The Queen's Pleasure" by Brandy Purdy and "Queen By Right" by Ann Easter Smith. That is as close as I have come!! I have "The Red Queen" and the "The Lady of the Rivers" all on my TBR shelf. I want to read them all together. I am thinking I had better join a chunkster challenge!As to which of those that I have read, it is too hard to choose, I really enjoyed them all!I am follower with GFC and e-mail.CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

  10. I'm a complete pacifist, or maybe just a total coward when it comes to warfare. I would not have sided with either house but probably would have dressed myself as a very ugly woman and gone through the war taking in washing.I follow Burton Book Review by email: carlscott(at)prodigy(dot)net(dot)mxand, I sent up a smoke signal in the form of a tweet promoting your lovely and generous giveaway: https://twitter.com/carlrscott/status/248135279481860096

  11. I don't really know enough about the Wars of the Roses to really pick a side. Plus, from what I do know, and from the differing points of view I've read, it's really very hard to pick a side, in my opinion. I have not read any of this series yet, although I do own The White Queen and The Red Queen. However, I have read the non-fiction book, The Women of the Cousins' War and that gave some great insight into each of the women featured in the first three books. The BBC in England is currently filming an adaptation of The White Queen, which I'm sure will make its way to the U.S. eventually so I will definitely be reading that book before then. Thanks for the giveaway and for the reminder on Facebook. Otherwise, I would have forgotten! I follow via GFC at The True Book Addict and via email at truebookaddictATgmailDOTcomshared on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michellestockardmiller/posts/179804368821868

  12. I haven't finished any of The Cousins' War books (I'm currently reading The White Queen) but I love Philippa Gregory's books. I just love her writing style and just how easy it is to fall into her books. I follow via Googlelafra86 at gmail dot com

  13. I liked the book The White Queen. I loved Elizabeth Woodville's machinations, but was unhappy with the two princes part. I am glad it left the fate of the one boy in the air. Gregory said she has to fall in love with her characters and that was hard to do with Margaret Beaufort. She was pretty unlovable and that left a lot missing in Gregory's style that made her other books so much fun. I have no clue how I found your website. Probably through linking, my usual way. I subscribe now. I used to surf blogs but don't much anymore. (Wow! I am always trying to explain midwestern colloquialism to people and that sentence was a classic.)

  14. I'm sending you an email Mary for your snail mail as my winner!!

  15. Again, thank you so muchmary

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