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Isabel the Fair Paperback – 1 Jan 1977

4.2 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Paperback, 1 Jan 1977
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Product details

  • Paperback: 287 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere; Reprint edition (1977)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0722122241
  • ISBN-13: 978-0722122242
  • Product Dimensions: 17.6 x 10.8 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,935,803 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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By lawyeraau HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 28 Mar. 2005
Format: Hardcover
In this well-written book, set amidst the pageantry and tumult of the fourteenth century, the author expertly chronicles the tragic story of Isabel the Fair, daughter of King Philip of France, who became wife to Edward II, King of England. Their marriage would prove to be the undoing of both of them.
Unfortunately for Isabel, her charms, while a hit with the English people who adored her, were apparently lost on Edward who, quite charming and attractive himself, seemed to have eyes only for those of the same sex. In particular, he had a very strong attachment to Piers Gaveston, a childhood friend with whom he had been raised. It appears that his relationship with Gaveston was of a romantic nature, and Isabel found herself taking a backseat to these two lovers, a position that did not sit well with the beautiful and resentful Isabel, whose only desire had been to have a happy marriage.
Moreover, Edward II's relationship with Piers Gaveston was totally indiscreet and, as a royal favorite, Gaveston incurred the enmity of the all powerful barons of England who looked upon Edward II as a weak king unable to govern his kingdom properly. Consequently, England would always seem to be on the brink of civil war during his reign. Still, King Edward II did his duty in terms of securing an heir, and, though an errant husband, he would prove to be a loving father. He and Isabel would have several children with Isabel functioning as a royal brood mare, a role that she was to resent.
The affair with Gaveston reached scandalous proportions and even temporary exile to Ireland did not cool Gaveston's and Edward II's ardor. When Gaveston returned to England, it would be the beginning of the end for these two lovers, with Gaveston meeting a fate that would forever cause Edward II to grieve.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have read a few books regarding this lady, this story gives an insight into the humiliation she suffered having married Edward, and not portraying her as a she wolf she was known as. Coming into her marriage as a young woman in love with Edward to have all her hopes dashed not once but twice, falling in love with Mortimer and then implicated in her husband's demise, having her eldest son turn against her and ending up with nothing .
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a good, though not outstanding account of the life of Isabel, Queen of England. It encompasses both her own infidelities and those of her husband Edward. The writing is of serviceable quality, but the tale is a good one, and my interest was held until the very end. Some 'facts' contradict those in other accounts of the marriage, but this is a niggle: we're dealing here with "historical fiction" after all. There's not a great deal written about Edward and his lovers, Piers Gaveston and Hugh Despenser, so if you have an interest in the Plantagenets, I'd recommend this novel.
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