This meme is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey where we keep track of what we are currently reading and plan to read.
I picked up the reissue of Elizabeth Chadwick's upcoming US release, A Place Beyond Courage, which can be seen as a sort of prequel to the William Marshal books I read last year. (The Greatest Knight, The Scarlet Lion).
This one follows William's father, John Fitzgilbert as he struggles to keep his head during the tremulous times when Empress Matilda and King Stephen were grasping for the throne of England during a long span of years in the 1100's. If you have read the magnificent When Christ and His Saints Slept by Sharon Kay Penman, this is that period but told from the Marshal's point of view. And King Stephen is still a jerk.
The early twelfth century is a time for ambitious men to prosper, and royal servant John FitzGilbert Marshal is one of them. Raised high as the kin of the deceased King Henry battle each other for England's throne, John reaps rich rewards but pays a terrible price for the choices he makes - as do his family. His wife, fragile, naïve Aline is hopelessly unequipped to cope with the demands of a life lived on the edge and, when John is seriously injured in battle, her worst nightmare is realised. Sybilla, bright, forthright sister to the Earl of Salisbury, finds herself used as a bargaining counter when her brother seeks to seal a truce with his troublesome neighbour, John FitzGilbert. And then there is Sybilla's small son, William, seized hostage by the King for John's word of honour. But sometimes keeping your honour means breaking your word.
|September 1, 2012 from Sourcebooks|
But LOOK at this COVER! Love it! Too bad I just have the ugly ARC though. Lucky for YOU though, because I am going to try and get this book read (Lord willing) just in time for you to be able to enter for the giveaway courtesy of Sourcebooks. All I've gotta do is get it read and reviewed by August 31 and we're set! Fingers crossed! It is a great story so far, but so far not my favorite. The characters are not quite as likable in this one, and I am one of those readers that I have to love the characters in order to also love the book. So we'll see how it turns out once I'm done!
Speaking of Giveaways.. don't forget to enter my Ten Book Giveaway!