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on 30 January 2018
I found the Darkening Glass more difficult to get into than I expected. The story of Edward and Galveston was not something I had come across before, their questionable relationship which put the king in dispute with his earls and the also with Isabella the Kings wife. However once I got further into the book I warmed to Mathilde and the confidence both king and queen had in her to gather the loss threads together.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 30 May 2012
This is the third of the Mathilde of Westminster stories - books set in and around the court of King Edward II of England, full of intrigue, plotting and planning, particularly by Edward's nobles against his favourite Gaveston.

In this book, it is March 1312, Edward and Gaveston's battle against the rebellious nobles is heating up to deadly levels, the Queen Isabella (Mathilde's mistress) is pregnant with the King's first child and potential heir. A volatile situation not helped by Robert Bruce in Scotland preparing to cause trouble in the north. Can the internal troubles be quelled, or at least held at bay, while the kingdom deals with the external threat? And what will Mathilde discover when murderers show their hand?

These books are great, as are pretty much all of Paul Doherty's historical novels, wherever and whenever they are set. The historical accuracy and research that has clearly gone into them is highly impressive; the atmosphere in these novels is dark and brooding; a real sense of menace hangs over the English court, and Mathilde, recounting these tales from her old age, banished by King Edward III has a real and cynical attitude to her life both now and in her younger days.

The story of Edward II and Gaveston, Isabella and the struggle for the English throne which ensues between so many disparate parties is a horrible part of English history; but wonderfully brought to life for the modern reader in these novels. I'm not sure if there are more Mathilde of Westminster novels out, but will have to keep an eye out for them. In the meantime, I'll be revisiting old P C Doherty favourites.
2 people found this helpful
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on 21 June 2009
Despite the apparent lukewarm reviews it seems this book is still rated pretty pretty highly. I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it difficult to put down. I thought the plot was effective and building up into what will clearly be a long lived character and series (I hope), the mood is atmospheric and conjures up many visions of life in that period, short, nasty and brutish. Having a woman as a central character is slightly unusual for Doherty and, generally, for most novelists writing about this period, Jecks, Gregory et al but works well for me. Mathilde and Isabel come across as strong but still feminine - the next one is on pre-order but, just a warning, where some series novels (Lee Childs and Reacher) can be read as stand alone, I don't think this one can - go on, be devils, order all three - you won't regret it!
3 people found this helpful
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on 28 June 2017
I love all Doherty's books and although I haven't had time to read this yet, as I am in the middle of another /doherty book (!) - I am sure I will like this one. Unfortunately, the order got duplicated, so I received two copies, so I guess it will go to the charity shop.
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on 20 December 2017
I never cease to be amazed by Paul Doherty's prowess and knowledgeable storytelling. I have read the trilogy in less. Than a week because I was so engrossed in the twists and turns ! Bravo once again and here's to the next series!
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on 11 September 2017
I have read most of Paul Doherty's books and enjoy them very much. He wears how scholarship lightly, but describes medieval life and politics with great precision.
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on 14 February 2018
good read
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on 18 January 2018
Good reading
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on 11 October 2017
Excellent twists, good characters.
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on 4 May 2017
A good read interesting as to how Gaveston was so disliked !
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