THE QUEEN’S DAUGHTER by Susan Coventry


Age Range: 14 & up
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This debut novel telling the story of a real medieval princess illuminates the lives of the rich and powerful and reveals the virtual imprisonment of wealthy women in an era that many romanticize. Joan was the daughter of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II of England, sister to Richard the Lionheart and wife of William the Good of Sicily. She tries in vain to be a good wife, and after William’s death she goes on crusade with her brother. Although Coventry follows the history of Joan as well as it is known, she necessarily imagines much of her subject’s life for the novel. The author handles characterizations quite well; Joan, especially, but also Richard, William and other interesting figures appear lively and true. An appealing historical-romance novel, however, may be as imprisoned as Joan in the details presented, even for medieval-history buffs. The author seems to be writing two books: Joan’s story and a fact-by-fact history of the internecine wars involving the Plantagenet family. Nevertheless, it’s an impressive first effort and an interesting story. (Historical fiction. YA)

Pub Date: June 8th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8050-8992-9
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Henry Holt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2010


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