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Wednesday, September 5, 2012


Book Review  September 5th 2012

Title – The Queen’s Vow

Author – C.W. Gortner

Historical Fiction – 400 pages

Date Published – June 12th 2012

Publisher – Ballantine


Book Description (From

Publication Date: June 12, 2012

No one believed I was destined for greatness.

So begins Isabella’s story, in this evocative, vividly imagined novel about one of history’s most famous and controversial queens—the warrior who united a fractured country, the champion of the faith whose reign gave rise to the Inquisition, and the visionary who sent Columbus to discover a New World. Acclaimed author C. W. Gortner envisages the turbulent early years of a woman whose mythic rise to power would go on to transform a monarchy, a nation, and the world.

Young Isabella is barely a teenager when she and her brother are taken from their mother’s home to live under the watchful eye of their half-brother, King Enrique, and his sultry, conniving queen. There, Isabella is thrust into danger when she becomes an unwitting pawn in a plot to dethrone Enrique. Suspected of treason and held captive, she treads a perilous path, torn between loyalties, until at age seventeen she suddenly finds herself heiress of Castile, the largest kingdom in Spain. Plunged into a deadly conflict to secure her crown, she is determined to wed the one man she loves yet who is forbidden to her—Fernando, prince of Aragon.

As they unite their two realms under “one crown, one country, one faith,” Isabella and Fernando face an impoverished Spain beset by enemies. With the future of her throne at stake, Isabella resists the zealous demands of the inquisitor Torquemada even as she is seduced by the dreams of an enigmatic navigator named Columbus. But when the Moors of the southern domain of Granada declare war, a violent, treacherous battle against an ancient adversary erupts, one that will test all of Isabella’s resolve, her courage, and her tenacious belief in her destiny.

From the glorious palaces of Segovia to the battlefields of Granada and the intrigue-laden gardens of Seville, The Queen’s Vow sweeps us into the tumultuous forging of a nation and the complex, fascinating heart of the woman who overcame all odds to become Isabella of Castile.


My Review:


There are some books which grab you and hold tight until the end, and then there are some books which hold you more gently but stay with you long after you have finished them.  Have you ever had a meal at a restaurant where weeks later you still find yourself thinking about it and longing for it again.  Well that is the best way that I can describe this book.  To be quite honest, right when I finished it, I wasn’t sure about how much I liked it.  I knew that the writing was beautiful and the characters were fascinating and there was never a lull throughout the entire book.  But I was left feeling a little sad and angry at the end.  I felt as though I had taken a very long journey with these characters and at the end I still had so many questions I wanted answered.  Now this is probably silly of me as a reader and reviewer and also very selfish, but I wanted everything at the end tied up in a neat little package.  But what I was left with was a story and characters that I continue to think about and wonder about some 3 weeks after I have finished the book.  Sometimes you don’t realize how beautiful something is until you take a step back.  If you love historical fiction then do yourself a favor and read this book.  I am have already purchased another book by this author now which will give me some more answers and closure regarding this story, “The Last Queen”.  Highly Recommended!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Summer Is Officially Over!
September 3rd 2012

Well summer is over and the kids are back to school and I am back to work.  No more days devoted to reading, it's so sad!  I really enjoyed being able to read and finish a book a week.  Now I am going to try very hard to keep a vigorous pace but so far I have read only half of my latest book in the last 2 weeks.  The book I am currently reading is "In The Shadow Of The Banyan" by Vadday Ratner.  I am really loving it so far and will post a review within the next week.  I now have well over 50 Advanced Copies of upcoming books from publishers.  The ones I am looking forward to reading the most are:
The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom
Love Anthony by Lisa Genova
Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver
A Dangerous Inheritance by Alison Weir
And those are just a few of them.  I personally have picked out all of my Arcs myself so I am feeling like a kid in a candy store right now!
I recently went to Diesel Books in Santa Monica for the book release party for The Survivor, the latest book out by best selling author Gregg Hurwitz.  This is third time I have attended one of his release parties  (he is a personal friend of ours) over the last few years and Gregg and his wife are always so kind and generous to all of their friends, family and fans!  Gregg is not only good looking,talented, funny and very down to earth, but he has an amazing work ethic.  Not to mention his amazing patience, he stayed for hours just to talk to and sign copies of his book for each and every person!  Thanks Gregg, I promise to read and then post my review soon!