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Brought to you by Penguin. In early 1461, a teenage boy won a battle on a freezing morning in the Welsh marches, and claimed the crown of England. He was Edward IV, first king of the usurping house of York. The country, crippled by economic crisis, insurgency, and a corrupt and bankrupt government, was in need of a new hero. Charismatic, able and ruthlessly ambitious, Edward and his two younger brothers, George, Duke of Clarence, and Richard, Duke of Gloucester, became the figureheads of a spectacular ruling dynasty which laid the foundations for a renewal of English royal power. Yet a web of grudges and resentments grew between them, generating a destructive sequence of conspiracy, rebellion, deposition, usurpation and murder. The brutal end came on 22 August 1485 at Bosworth Field, with the death of the youngest brother, then Richard III, at the hands of a new usurper, Henry Tudor. The Brothers York is the story of three remarkable brothers, two of whom were crowned kings of England and the other an heir presumptive, whose fatal antagonism was fuelled by the mistrust and vendettas of the age that brought their family to power. The house of York should have been the dynasty that the Tudors became. Its tragedy was that it devoured itself.Show more
A fresh look at the endlessly fascinating Tudors'the dramatic and overlooked story of Henry VII and his founding of the Tudor Dynasty'filled with spies, plots, counter-plots, and an uneasy royal succession to Henry VIII. Near the turn of the sixteenth century, England had been ravaged for decades by conspiracy and civil war. Henry Tudor clambered to the top of the heap, a fugitive with a flimsy claim to England's crown who managed to win the throne and stay on it for twenty-four years. Although he built palaces, hosted magnificent jousts, and sent ambassadors across Europe, for many Henry VII remained a false king. But he had a crucial asset: his family'the queen and their children, the living embodiment of his hoped-for dynasty. Now, in what would be the crowning glory of his reign, his elder son would marry a great Spanish princess. Thomas Penn re-creates an England that is both familiar and very strange'a country medieval yet modern, in which honor and chivalry mingle with espionage, realpolitik, high finance, and corruption. It is the story of the transformation of a young, vulnerable boy, Prince Henry, into the aggressive teenager who would become Henry VIII, and of Catherine of Aragon, his future queen, as well as of Henry VII'controlling, avaricious, paranoid, with Machiavellian charm and will to power. Rich with incident and drama, filled with wonderfully drawn characters,'Winter King'is an unforgettable account of pageantry, intrigue, the thirst for glory, and the fraught, unstable birth of Tudor England. 'I feel I've been waiting to read this book a long time. It's a fluent and compelling account of the cost of founding the Tudor dynasty.''Hilary Mantel, Man Booker Prize'winning author of'Wolf HallShow more