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The Sunne in Splendour Paperback – 22 Jan 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 361 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 936 pages
  • Publisher: St Martin's Press; Reprint edition (22 Jan. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031237593X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312375935
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 4.1 x 20.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (361 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,080,211 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"A painstakingly drawn picture of royal medieval England from bedchamber to battleground."
---"Los Angeles"" Times Book Review"

"The reader is left with the haunting sensation that perhaps the good a man does can live after him---especially in the hands of a dedicated historian."
---"The San Diego Union"

"Those who know Richard III from Shakespeare will find that Sharon Kay Penman presents a contrasting view of the English monarch . . . He's an altogether nice man, a romantic hero as suitable to our late twentieth-century standards . . . as he was to those of medieval England . . . There is a vengeful quality to her insistence that is appealing; it makes for a good story."
---"The New York Times Book Review"

"Ms. Penman's novel, rich in detail and research, attempts to set the record straight . . . it is an uncommonly fine novel, one that brings a far-off time to brilliant life."
---"Chattanooga"" Daily Times"

“A painstakingly drawn picture of royal medieval England from bedchamber to battleground.”
---"Los Angeles"" Times Book Review"

“The reader is left with the haunting sensation that perhaps the good a man does can live after him---especially in the hands of a dedicated historian.”
---"The San Diego Union"

“Those who know Richard III from Shakespeare will find that Sharon Kay Penman presents a contrasting view of the English monarch . . . He’s an altogether nice man, a romantic hero as suitable to our late twentieth-century standards . . . as he was to those of medieval England . . . There is a vengeful quality to her insistence that is appealing; it makes for a good story.”
---"The New York Times Book Review"

“Ms. Penman’s novel, rich in detail and research, attempts to set the record straight . . . it is an uncommonly fine novel, one that brings a far-off time to brilliant life.”
---"Chattanooga"" D

"A painstakingly drawn picture of royal medieval England from bedchamber to battleground." --"Los Angeles Times Book Review"

"The reader is left with the haunting sensation that perhaps the good a man does can live after him---especially in the hands of a dedicated historian." --"The San Diego Union"

"Those who know Richard III from Shakespeare will find that Sharon Kay Penman presents a contrasting view of the English monarch . . . He's an altogether nice man, a romantic hero as suitable to our late twentieth-century standards . . . as he was to those of medieval England . . . There is a vengeful quality to her insistence that is appealing; it makes for a good story." --"The New York Times Book Review"

"Ms. Penman's novel, rich in detail and research, attempts to set the record straight . . . it is an uncommonly fine novel, one that brings a far-off time to brilliant life." --"Chattanooga Daily Times"

A painstakingly drawn picture of royal medieval England from bedchamber to battleground. "Los Angeles Times Book Review"

The reader is left with the haunting sensation that perhaps the good a man does can live after him---especially in the hands of a dedicated historian. "The San Diego Union"

Those who know Richard III from Shakespeare will find that Sharon Kay Penman presents a contrasting view of the English monarch . . . He's an altogether nice man, a romantic hero as suitable to our late twentieth-century standards . . . as he was to those of medieval England . . . There is a vengeful quality to her insistence that is appealing; it makes for a good story. "The New York Times Book Review"

Ms. Penman's novel, rich in detail and research, attempts to set the record straight . . . it is an uncommonly fine novel, one that brings a far-off time to brilliant life. "Chattanooga Daily Times""

Book Description

The classic, magnificent bestselling novel about Richard III, now in a special thirtieth anniversary edition --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book is Sharon Penman's magnum opus - none of her other novels equal it in sheer size - and it is one of her best. I have read it so many times I have lost count, and it still moves me to tears in certain places. She plunges us into the midst of the Wars of the Roses, introducing us immediately to Richard, youngest son of Richard, Duke of York. In quick succession we meet the other sons of York - golden Edward, the eldest; quiet, more intense Edmund; and teasing George, closest in age to Richard himself. We are also introduced to their mother, Cecily Neville, one of the most admirable characters in the book - pious, intelligent, loving and deeply loyal to her family. Within a very short time we find ourselves observing the Battle of Wakefield and its awful aftermath from Edmund's point of view. Though Lancaster won the battle, it was a turning point for York, as Edward was flung into the spotlight by his father's death. A large part of the novel deals with Edward's reign as Edward IV, and Richard's interactions with him and with the other dominant figure of the period, his cousin, Warwick the Kingmaker. Penman shows Richard as the youth remaining loyal to his brother despite his fondness for the Nevilles and his love for Warwick's daughter, whom he later married after the conclusive battles of Barnet and Tewksbury re-established Edward on his throne. Rather than the hunchbacked, evil man of Shakepeare and Tudor historians' depictions, we are presented with a man dealing with conflicting loyalties, an able battle commander, deeply loving and utterly trusted by his older brother, who effectively gave the north of England into Richard's control.
It is after Edward's death that matters become complicated.
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By laineyf TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Aug. 2002
Format: 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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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I read The White Queen by Philippa Gregory earlier in the year, I became intrigued by Richard III, the Wars of the Roses and the mystery of the Princes in the Tower. The Sunne in Splendour was recommended to me as the best fictional account of Richard III, so I immediately bought a copy. As soon as I started reading I knew I was going to love this book. Not only did it turn out to be the best historical fiction book I've read for a long time, it was also one of the best books of any type that I've read this year.

The Sunne in Splendour tells the complete life story of Richard III from childhood to death. Penman portrays Richard as a sympathetic figure who has been unfairly treated by history. Sadly, he is often thought of today as the villain of Shakespeare's Richard III: the evil hunchback who murdered his nephews. It's worth remembering though, that Shakespeare lived in Tudor England - and it was Henry Tudor who defeated Richard, the last of the Plantagenet kings.

The Wars of the Roses is the term used to describe a series of battles and rebellions that took place between two branches of the English royal family, the House of York and the House of Lancaster, during the late fifteenth century. I already had some basic knowledge of the period before I started reading this book, but even if you don't I think Penman makes it easy enough to understand. Sometimes a story can suffer from the author's attempts to include every little bit of interesting information they've uncovered in their research, but that's not actually a problem here. Yes, there's an enormous amount of detail, but everything feels necessary and helps to build up a vivid picture of Richard's world.
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Format: Paperback
I’m a big fan of historical fiction, and for some strange reason had never stumbled upon Sharon Penman. I was searching for new books to read when, ‘The Sunne in Splendour’ was recommended to me.
This is a magnificent book and the life of the House of York bounds out of the pages that scarcely allow you awareness of our own time and place. I vested so much emotional currency on this book, that when history revealed itself I was left with an unforgettable feeling of longing and loss.
First of all let me give you the book in short. The book is about Richard III. It starts to follow him as a young lad during the first few years of the War of the Roses. It gives extensive back story into Edward V, Richards’s brother. It takes the house of York from loss to ultimate triumph. Edward ascends the throne and Richard becomes the Duke of Gloucester. This book centres on the man Richard becomes, but it does so through the occurrences in Edwards reign. It then moves to Edwards’s death and Richard’s ascension to the throne and his ultimate battle. By ultimate battle I do not just mean in war. His personal life is as closely scrutinised as his public image, which brings a element of romance and sacrifice into the book.
It gives details and facts that are historically accurate, but what the author has done is to bind history with the characters and filled in their emotions and characteristics based on fact and intuition. The truth of such matters after such a long time is suspect at best, but what this book brings us is a version of what it might have been like. You start to love Richards’s character and adore Edward V, all of a sudden your world is a swirling mass of banners and swords.
The authors view on the Richard III is not uncommon.
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