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Abduction of the Scots Queen by [Black, Jen]
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Abduction of the Scots Queen Kindle Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Length: 257 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Product description

About the Author

Jen Black was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and now lives in the Tyne Valley. She studied English and History at University, worked in academic libraries and shares her life with husband and Dalmatian Tim who keeps her fit by walking her three times a day. Her books are all available on Amazon Kindle.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 985 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Publisher: Orchard Hill Books (28 Oct. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00OZME2DK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #223,181 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
This is my first 'Jen Black' book and I took it on a business visit to Scotland, to keep me company on the long train journey. As a half-Scot myself I've grown up with the tales of border life in the 16th century and I've been very disappointed with some of the offerings out there, fiction-wise. For that reason I tend to avoid a lot of them.

However, Jen's created a lovable and believable cast of fictional characters, and their story unfolds within the realistic and carefully researched Scots royal court and border lands of the day.

The book begins with discussion of an 'arranged marriage' between the reigning king's son, Prince Edward, and the the infant Queen Mary of Scotland. The treaty allowed for the wedding to happen when she was ten years old. For political reasons, and because the king in question was Henry VIII, suddenly there's huge pressure for the children to marry immediately. The king has offered a reward to any man who delivers the little queen to him.

Matho Spirston's pal, Harry Wharton, sees this as a way to advance himself. Matho is horrified. Harry asks his father to allow them to set out immediately because he estimates that England and Scotland will be at war within two weeks. I won't say more - if you like this kind of fiction and want real, believable border-country characters, you'll love this book.

I found the story gripping especially as I read much of it on a couple of train journeys, winding through the Trossachs and then the highlands of Scotland. However, Jen sets the scene very well and there are charts to differentiate the fictional characters from the historical ones as well as maps etc.

Loved Matho, Harry and Jonnet Dean, and lapped up the accurately portrayed accents and period details.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Abduction of The Scots Queen

By Jen Black

Before I read Abduction of The Scots Queen by the talented Jen Black I knew very little about Scottish politics in that era. The author skilfully presents the historical personalities and politics of the day without detracting from a fascinating tale of plots and counter-plots, betrayal and love, ambition and greed.

A treaty has been arranged for the infant Queen Mary of Scotland to marry Henry VIII’s son, Prince Edward, when she is ten years old. For political reasons Henry now wants the children to marry immediately. The king has offered a reward to any man who delivers the queen to him.

Matho Spirston’s friend, Harry Wharton, sees this as a way to advance himself. Matho is horrified by the idea. Harry asks his father to allow them to set out immediately because he estimates that England and Scotland will be at war within two weeks.

The Dowager Queen, Arran the Regent and Cardinal Beton favour an alliance with France not Henry the VIII, so Matho becomes “convinced that the Scottish lords are as shifty as the traders at the quayside in Newcastle.” That is also true of a particular lady, Meg Douglas, who also wants to kidnap the queen. Half-sister of the late King of Scotland, who died at Flodden, Meg is the daughter of Henry VIII’s sister. Her father wants her to marry ambitious Mathew Stewart, Earl of Lennox, who has a claim to the throne of Scotland. Lennox courts Mary of Guise, the Dowager Queen, and Meg. At a time when many children died at an early age, if Queen Mary and Prince Edward die, Meg would inherit the thrones of England and Scotland. (Presumably, at that time, the princesses Mary and Elizabeth of England had been disinherited.)

Jen Black is expert at setting scenes.
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Format: Paperback
In the Abduction of the Scots Queen Jen Black has boldly intermingled fact and fiction and succeeded in writing a very absorbing and intriguing novel. Intriguing is certainly the word for the Scots court in 1543 as lowly-born Matho Spirston soon finds out. Drawn by his friend Harry Wharton into the dangerous mission to capture the baby queen Matho is left alone to carry it out when Harry is attacked in an Edinburgh back street. His character unfolds in the face of this challenge especially when he is beguiled by meeting the alluring Lady Margaret Douglas. Here we have a real historical character who, much against her strong will, is a pawn in the intricate machinations at the Scots court. Jen Black is not afraid to make her succumb to the secret delight of a liaison with a rough peasant like Matho and I found this perfectly believable. There are a panoply of other vividly portrayed characters, mostly historical figures, but Jen has obviously researched the period very thoroughly and brings them all convincingly to life.
The exciting climax is brilliantly handled. Every scene takes the reader into the heart of the action and it's impossible to guess how it will all turn out till the end is reached.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Right from the first page the reader is plunged straight into this 16th century story of adventure and intrigue. It begins in the wild Borderlands between Scotland and England, and the author instantly conjures up the sights and smells of the era – you feel you are there! It follows the fortunes of a young English borderer, Matho, and his friend Harry who are given the dangerous task of attempting to abduct Scotland's royal infant, Mary Queen of Scots and spirit her away to King Henry VIII of England. But Mary is kept in the mighty fortress of Stirling Castle and well guarded by her fiercely possessive mother, Mary of Guise, and her courtiers.

Here Matho also meets the strong-willed Lady Meg Douglas who has her own reasons for encouraging Matho and manipulating him for her own ends. The complicated intrigues and rivalries of 16th century Scottish politics are deftly handled by the author, and the tension builds to a whirlwind of a climax, keeping the reader guessing till the end. An entertaining read.
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