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Queen of Bedlam (Georgian Queens) Paperback – 10 Jun 2014
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""Queen of Bedlam" is a masterfully written and well-researched novel written by someone who has truly mastered the craft of evoking readers' emotions." --Historical Novels Review
About the Author
Laura Purcell lives in Colchester, the oldest recorded town in England. She met her husband working in Waterstones bookshop and they share their home with several pet guinea pigs. Laura is a member of the Historical Novel Society, The Society for Court Studies and Historic Royal Palaces. She recently appeared on the PBS documentary The Secrets of Henry VIII's Palace, talking about Queen Caroline's life at Hampton Court. Laura's novels explore the lives of royal women during the Georgian era, who have largely been ignored by modern history. Her debut Queen of Bedlam was originally self-published, receiving excellent reviews as an Amazon bestseller in biographical fiction. Laura writes a history blog at www.laurapurcell.com
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Top Customer Reviews
Despite the rather large cast of characters, the author does a fantastic job of creating each person in their own right. In a short span of pages I could easily tell Amelia apart from Sophia and Royal (and the same goes for the men as well, although they are featured on fewer pages). It is very easy for an author to focus on just one or two characters while the rest are introduced for a few sentences and then disappear to just show up in cursory scenes – not so here. I feel that I truly got to know each of them. I think that Sophia was my favorite character – my heart just broke for her.
Another strength in this novel was how the author sets the events in England within the context of events that are occurring in other parts of the world (particularly America, France, and some of the states and duchies that would become Germany). The American Revolution, the French Revolution, and the conquest of Napoleon all occurred during the reign of George III and are all events I was familiar with and helped me to place the events within the context of the greater world.Read more ›
I love reading historical books they have a certain air about them. This was a fantastic read that had clearly been well researched. I'm not a huge fan of multiple points of view, Queen Charlotte's, Charlotte, Princess Royal's and Princess Sophia's, but I found that it was very well written.
I loved and hated the characters. The Queen at the beginning is very easy to sympathise with but when she slowly allows bitterness to encase her it gets harder. Admittedly she never had the easiest of lives. She suffered greatly but she wasn't willing to let go. I loved Charlotte, Princess Royal, because although she suffered the one thing she dreaded she still managed to cling on to hope. She had all that she needed and I think eventually she realised this. I'm not sure what I make of Princess Sophia. I wanted to like her but I just couldn't connect with her.
I think the ending was the best. That sounds wrong but it was. After all that the Royals had been through they were peaceful and content. They all got what they wanted which was nice. I'm not into everything been tied up into a neat little bow but I think here it was needed. I did enjoy the part where Charlotte, Princess Royal, was losing herself but managed to bring herself back.
This is a book everybody should at least give a try, it's one that will leave you guessing and definitely wanting more. It's a page turner all right.
As I’m currently writing about the 1790s myself, it was fascinating to learn about the royal milieu and its stifling atmosphere. I have long been fascinated by the jewel-encrusted hooped court dresses of the day, but discovered that these were but a small part of the mental and physical constriction that the couples’ six daughters had placed upon them. Turning the archetype of glamourous princesses upside down, we see the them blighted by their beloved father’s madness. Purcell cleverly selects two of these princesses as her focus, the eldest Princess Royal, who longs for marriage and children, and Sophia, a sickly romantic.
Moving between the perspectives of Queen Charlotte, Royal and Sophia, the novel gallops along, depicting the strain of lives lived beneath a rigid and tedious regime. We see the Queen ‘botanising’ at Kew, the girls horse-riding at Windsor, lining up for parades and dreading lengthy and tedious concerts.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
good book but couldn't read all of it due to missing pages, yet again, did not download properly. Amazon is not doing it's authors any favours with this service.Published 8 months ago by Gardsuener
Read: October 2015
When King George III is losing his mind, his wife, Queen Charlotte does everything in her power to keep her family together. Read more
This novel is very pacey, a real page turner, with attention to historical detail. Thoroughly researched with additional notes from the author at the end, this was a very enjoyable... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Scrapred
Beautifully crafted, and painstakingly researched. I absolutely loved this. The language is delicate but powerful; some gorgeous little touches, but it pulls no punches either. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Terri Nixon
As a complete historical novice I bought this book with some trepidation after reading the synopsis and promptly found myself riveted!! Read morePublished on 3 Mar. 2015 by Laura
This is a brilliant debut novel, that opens your eyes to a side of Georgian history that is often overlooked, the effect of King George's 'madness' on those closest too him. Read morePublished on 23 Nov. 2014 by Kindle Customer