LADY RICH by Elizabeth Boatwright Coker


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A full-threated tale of the time of the untidy Tudors, with Lady Penelope Devereux -- in this version Phillip Sidney's ""Stella"" -- followed in her career from adolescent court deb to antique dame. This is a Tudor historical in the grand, expected and approved manner -- a tale of one life-long love (Penelope and Monteroy, leader in the Irish campaign); endless, tangled family power feuds (Lord Essex was Penelope's brother); hangings, drawings and quarterings; masques and revels (sacred and hotly profane); famous names (Sidney is personable, in excellent control of his prosody and passions); and a startling view or two of the hawk-like, passionate and fierce Queen Elizabeth in and out of her small clothes. The story concerns the struggle of Penelope or Essex to be at one with Monteroy to whom she is finally married in the reign of James I after a brutal arranged marriage to the degenerate Lord Rich. In the interim she becomes Lady-in-Waiting to the Queen; becomes the object of Sidney's adoration; bears innumerable children and witnesses the ups and downs of her friends and relatives. Although one might call for a more accurate documentation, this is a roaring good yarn of the cloak and bosom school.

Publisher: Dutton