A Rose for the Crown, writes Kirkus Reviews, is "Remarkably assured... a delightful, confident novel... a strong new voice in the field of historical romance."
A Rose for the Crown is my revisionist look at King Richard III of England, whose reputation has been irrevocably damaged by writers of the Tudor period, the dynasty that knocked the last Plantagenet king, Richard, off the throne.
My protagonist is fictional Kate Haute, poor relation to a
well-connected family, who takes her in to
be companion to their only daughter. Kate is married first to an elderly merchant who dies leaving her wealthy and able to marry up -- and to the boy of her dreams, who is unable to love her.
Through his patron, Sir John Howard, later Duke of
Norfolk, Kate meets young Richard, duke of Gloucester, brother of King Edward IV, with whom she has an illicit five year relationship, bearing him three children. Kate is not, however, a suitable consort for a royal duke, and Richard's loyalty to duty forces the lovers to part. Richard's story is central to the book once he is king, with Kate helping him through several crises, and her love and loyalty buoying him at these times.
Author's Note: We know Richard had a mistress -- perhaps more than one -- because two
of his bastard children are mentioned in records from the period. No
one has discovered her identity, which has allowed me to invent her.
This is her story -- as plausible as a thorough research into the
period and lives of the non-fictional characters allowed
Daughter of York, "A remarkable achievement." ~Sandra Gulland, author of Josephine B Trilogy.
Daughter of York re-visits many of the characters from A Rose for the Crown, as we follow Margaret, sister of Edward IV and Richard III, from the court of England where, as a pawn in Edward's political schemes, she is kept single until she is 22, when a Burgundian alliance is forged through her marriage to Charles the Bold, the new Duke of Burgundy.
Despite fulfilling her duty to her new country with intelligence and aplomb, Margaret never forgets she is an English princess and a daughter of the House of York. Her homesickness is exacerbated by having to leave behind the love of her life. Fate brings them together rarely after she becomes duchess to a man she only met a week before her marriage, and whom she discovers suffers from such a grandiose view of his place in history that he is capable of great cruelty towards anyone who stands in his way.
She finds solace in the bond she forges with her new young stepdaughter, her friendship with William Caxton, learning to rule her new country, and her unusual confidante, a dwarf named Fortunata. But once in a while, she breaks the rules in the arms of her one true love...
The King's Grace, winner of the 2009 Romantic Times Magazine's Best Historical Biography award: "This meticulously research and elaborately plotted narrative ... [puts] a humand face on a bitter feud." ~Booklist
Grace's name exists in one line of an account, written at the time of the funeral flotilla of Queen Elizabeth Woodville in 1492. She is described as "king Edward's bastard daughter, one of two gentlewomen" who accompanied the queen's coffin up the Thames to Windsor for burial. We can assume, thereforce, that she was in Elizabeth's household and thus knew her royal step-sisters. Grace is my sweet and very useful witness to what went on in the palace after the Battle of Bosworth and Henry Tudor ascended the throne, marrying Grace's stepsister Elizabeth of York.
And the truth of the matter is that, until we can produce the body of young Richard we shall never know if Perkin was the prince or a pretender. The King's Grace is my interpretation of the facts and my best guess -- and as the mystery of the disappearance of the princes is still unsolved, a guess that is as good as any. I would urge anyone still intrigued to study the sources for themselves.
Nominated for 2011 Best Historical Fiction by Romantic Times Book Reviews: "Readers will be swept into her lush and fascinating tale that reads like the best of fiction yet resonates with reality."
Queen by Right
is the story of Cecily of York, mother of two kings and one of English
history's most intelligent and courageous women. In Cecily Neville,
duchess of York and ancestor of every English monarch to the present
day, Anne has found her most engrossing character yet. Cecily earned two
monikers from her contemporaries: Rose of Raby for her fair-haired
beauty and Proud Cis for her fierce loyalty and courage in the face of
the many history-making events she experienced in her eighty years. This
was a woman who could have been queen had her husband lived to win the
day over Henry VI and his queen, Margaret of Anjou, in the winter of
To purchase A Rose for the Crown through your favorite bookseller, please click the corresponding icon below: Daughter of York , The King's Grace, and Queen by Right , are also available through the same booksellers.