After being widowed, Lady Anne Stafford returns to her family's home. She anticipates returning to court, enjoying the frivolity and excess allowed previously denied to her as a maid but now permitted due to her new widow status. Her brother, the Duke of Buckingham, however, has other ideas on his mind.
After crossing the palace threshold, Anne's brother marries her off to a man he anticipates will help his family advance. Anne quickly realizes that, although forced into it, her marriage to Baron George Hastings might not be such a bad thing. In fact, she could imagine herself falling into love with him. That is, until she meets William Compton. Compton, a king's servant, has very little of his own. Marriage to him is impossible, but an affair isn't. It is only Anne's sense of loyalty which keeps her faithfully by her husband's side.
When she is caught in a compromising position, her brother and husband ship her off to a nunnery. The abuse she receives there is nothing short of terrifying, but it's the fact that she has no one to turn to that causes her to despair. The subsequent years of her life are spent in seclusion, punished for a love she never engaged in.
Emerson's fourth novel in the Tudor Court series is perhaps the best yet. Anne's story is shocking, thrilling and undeniably entertaining. A true page turner, the book drags the reader in and doesn't let up until the very end. Emerson masterfully manages to write a book about the Tudor court which doesn't directly, but rather subtly, involves King Henry and his many wives. Don't hesitate to pick this up, it's sure to provide hours of entertainment.
The fourth novel in Kate Emerson’s well-reviewed series set in Tudor England—based on a real life member of the royal court of Henry VIII.
Following the acclaimed By Royal Decree, Pleasure Palace, and Between Two Queens, Kate Emerson again plucks a real figure from history in this lushly detailed tale featuring Lady Anne Stafford—who is torn between her husband and another man.
History remembers Lady Anne Stafford as the woman who cheated on her husband with both King Henry VIII and his companion, Sir William Compton. Lady Anne was indeed in love with two men at the same time….but the king wasn’t one of them. Lady Anne’s complex and heart-wrenching romantic relationships are at the core of this riveting tale that masterfully blends romance, drama, and historical detail as only Kate Emerson can.