Monday, October 19, 2015

Flashback Recommendation #7 did not have much time this week to troll through my bookcases for several Flashback Recommendations, but as I had just left Lynn Cullen's discussion at my local bookstore about her new book, Twain's End, I thought about her other books.

Mrs. Poe was quite the hit a year or so back and garnered rave reviews, such as Twain's End is already doing just a week out of the gate.

But I remember the first book of her's that I read - Reign of Madness.    I found Juana the Mad to be a terribly interesting historical figure.  Her life was told in a nice story format, which let you become involved in her life.


Book Description:
From the author of The Creation of Eve comes a tale of love and madness, royal intrigue and marital betrayal, set during the Golden Age of Spain. 

Juana of Castile, third child of the Spanish monarchs Isabel and Fernando, grows up with no hope of inheriting her parents' crowns, but as a princess knows her duty: to further her family's ambitions through marriage. Yet stories of courtly love, and of her parents' own legendary romance, surround her. When she weds the Duke of Burgundy, a young man so beautiful that he is known as Philippe the Handsome, she dares to hope that she might have both love and crowns. He is caring, charming, and attracted to her-seemingly a perfect husband.

But what begins like a fairy tale ends quite differently.

When Queen Isabel dies, the crowns of Spain unexpectedly pass down to Juana, leaving her husband and her father hungering for the throne. Rumors fly that the young Queen has gone mad, driven insane by possessiveness. Who is to be believed? The King, beloved by his subjects? Or the Queen, unseen and unknown by her people?

One of the greatest cautionary tales in Spanish history comes to life as Lynn Cullen explores the controversial reign of Juana of Castile-also known as Juana the Mad. Sweeping, page-turning, and wholly entertaining, Reign of Madness is historical fiction at its richly satisfying best.