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86 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling, Factual, and yet Human Drama, 21 Aug 2002
This review is from: The Sunne in Splendour (Paperback)
The Sunne in Splendour is an incredible book. I have read all of Sharon Penman's novels, and thoroughly enjoyed all of them, but this is far and away my favourite. I think that Richard III has
had a terrible and undeserved reputation, and this book goes a long way to rectifying this. It is never trivial, or patronising, it just tells a completely different story to the one we have all been brought up to believe. Richard is not portrayed as a hunch-backed, uncaring monster, more as a man faced with unspeakable dilemmas, and no way out. I admit to having a soft spot for Richard Plantagenet, and I do feel that he has been treated very unfairly by history. However, this book enables him to have his say, and to try to put the record straight. He was betrayed, and the battle scene description at Bosworth Field, when he knew that treason had been committed, moved me to tears. This book doesn't just deal in facts, it also
gives the story from a more personal view, and that made it more appealing to me. I loved it. Read it, so will you.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 9 Jan 2013 22:54:58 GMT
I'm toying with ideas for June 1483 to August 1485 book.
To me it seems very probable that Richard ordered the murders of his nephews, the Princes in the Tower. But that was his only way of diverting what could have been one of England's greatest disasters: A Wydville clan takeover.

With adult Wydvilles controlling the child King, Richard's power and possessions would have been whittled away quickly.
Already Edward V had refused to even discuss the possibility that Earl Rivers (his maternal uncle) had been conspiring against Richard (his paternal uncle).
With Richard Plantagenet's brother (Edward IV) dead, the new king was totally under the control of his Dowager Queen Mother and her Wydville relatives.

I also believe that Richard went after the throne for reasons that were noble and good, not greed and power lust.
He ordered bad deeds done for, what he considered, the very best of reasons and the only real choice open to anyone who loved England.

This was a rare situation when having kids murdered was actually the lesser of the evils available.
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