Margaret Pole was born into one of the most powerful families in England. But power does not always mean safety. Daughter of the Duke of Clarence who was executed for Treason, niece to two kings of England, she is hardly just anyone. When her uncle loses his throne to Henry Tudor, she knows what it is like to feel fear. Living daily with the fear and the past is something that she is able to come to grips with. But she slowly manages to keep her fingers in the political games going on in England. Married off to a knight, she finds love with her husband, and after the birth of several children, she learns that her beloved husband has died.
After the death of Henry Tudor, his son Henry VIII takes the throne. Margaret is a friend of the new queen, and through her manages to begin to rebuild her family fortune. She regains her family title, and is now the Countess of Salisbury. But the wheel of fortune doth quickly turn! With her Plantagenet blood, she is constantly under suspicion, and when one of her sons refuses to bend to the kings will in his great matter, her relationship which was already fraying with the king undergoes further deterioration. When her friend is set aside as queen so that Henry can marry another, the political divides become more apparent at court. But what will the future hold for the Countess of Salisbury?
This book was a great read! I had an extremely hard time putting it down! I had read Hazel Pierce's biography of Margaret Pole prior to reading this one, to make sure that I had the basics of her life down. Samantha Wilcoxson has not disappointed. She brings the reader into the story, and you feel as though you are going through the trials along with the Countess. Her life was one of heartbreak and terror. It is amazing that she managed to live such a long life, considering that her brother was executed merely for being a Plantagenet. It might be that she escaped early detection, simply because she was a woman, however, Henry VIII had different plans. While he could be generous, he was demanding and if he thought there was any chance at all of you being disloyal, your life was in jeopardy. There was nothing disappointing in this read at all! You are hooked from the first page! The entire story is enthralling, but specked with sadness as you read about the trials and heartbreaks that Margaret Pole endured in her lifetime.