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Crown of Thistles The Fatal Inheritance of Mary Queen of Scots by Linda Porter
  

Crown of Thistles The Fatal Inheritance of Mary Queen of Scots

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Linda Porter examines the power struggle between two women, Elizabeth and Mary, their two dynasties, Tudor and Stewart and their two countries, England and Scotland. It’s a bloody history, a power struggle, a dynastic and religious battle for supremacy. Usually presented in its “endgame” with the death of Mary Queen of Scots, Linda Porter takes us to the roots of the conflict, revealing the little-known background to the plotting and warfare, the author is adept at twining the dual themes of the personal and the political creating a real page-turner.

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Synopsis

Crown of Thistles The Fatal Inheritance of Mary Queen of Scots by Linda Porter

The struggle between the fecund Stewarts and the barren Tudors is generally seen only in terms of the relationship between Elizabeth I and her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots. But very little has been said about the background to their intense rivalry. Here, Linda Porter examines the ancient and intractable power struggle between England and Scotland, a struggle intensified during the reigns of Elizabeth and Mary's grandfathers. Henry VII aimed to provide stability when he married his daughter, Margaret, to James IV of Scotland in 1503. But he must also have known that Margaret's descendants might seek to rule the entire island. Crown of Thistles is the story of a divided family, of flamboyant kings and queens, cultured courts and tribal hatreds, blood feuds, rape and sexual licence on a breath-taking scale, and violent deaths. It also brings alive a neglected aspect of British history - the blood-spattered steps of two small countries on the fringes of Europe towards an awkward unity that would ultimately forge a great nation. Beginning with the unlikely and dramatic victories of two usurping kings, one a rank outsider and the other a fourteen-year-old boy who rebelled against his own father, the book sheds new light on Henry VIII, his daughter, Elizabeth, and on his great-niece, Mary Queen of Scots, still seductive more than 400 years after her death.

Reviews

Stunning - an epic journey through the turbulent history of two nations, engagingly written and showing a masterly balance of politics and vivid personal detail. -- Alison Weir

The authentic story of how Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I came to be, rather than simply who they were ... bold, insightful and vivid. -- Melanie Reid The Times Saturday Review

In focusing on the family rivalries that led to Mary's reign and fall, Porter has found a fresh approach to a familiar subject. She brings alive a thrilling story of cultured courts and violent deaths, of ambitious kings and tragic queens. -- Leanda De Lisle Mail on Sunday

About the Author

Linda Porter was the winner of the 2004 Biographers Club/Daily Mail Prize, and her first two books, Mary Tudor: The First Queen and Katherine the Queen: the Remarkable Life of Katherine Parr were both published to great acclaim. She is a regular contributor to BBC History Magazine and History Today. She lives in Kent.

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Book Info

Publication date

24th April 2014

Author

Linda Porter

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Author's Website

www.lindaporter.net/

Publisher

Pan Books an imprint of Pan Macmillan

Format

Paperback
544 pages

Categories

History
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Early modern history: c 1450/1500 to c 1700

ISBN

9780330534376

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