Friday, October 1, 2010

Book Review: For the King's Favor by Elizabeth Chadwick

Publish Date: September 2010
Format: Paperback 544pp

Synopsis: (From the Publisher)
"A Bittersweet Tale of Love, Loss, and the Power of Royalty.
When Roger Bigod arrives at King Henry II's court to settle a bitter inheritance dispute, he becomes enchanted with Ida de Tosney, young mistress to the powerful king. A victim of Henry's seduction and the mother of his son, Ida sees in Roger a chance to begin a new life. But Ida pays an agonizing price when she leaves the king, and as Roger's importance grows and he gains an earldom, their marriage comes under increasing strain. Based on the true story of a royal mistress and the young lord she chose to marry, For the King's Favor is Elizabeth Chadwick at her best."

My Review:

In Elizabeth Chadwick's latest novel, For the King's Favor, we find a captivating story of honor, duty and love....

Rodger Bigod, the unwanted son of a traitorous Earl, finds himself with a weighty decision: be loyal to his father or his king. Choosing the path he deems most honorable, Rodger devotes his life to the service of King Henry II. Although Rodger swears his allegiance and proves his merit in battle, he quickly learns it will take more than that to claim his inheritance and erase the shame his father brought on the Bigod name.

During his stay at court, Rodger is besotted with the young and beautiful Ida de Tosney, none other than the King's beloved mistress. Despite Ida's life of luxury and honor as the King's mistress, she longs for a peaceful and respectable life away from court. As she grows more confidant in her power of having the king's favor, she devises a plan that will possibly lead her to the life she has always dreamed of.

With a sudden twist of fate, Rodger and Ida find themselves able to make a new life for themselves. Undaunted by the knowledge of the trials that lie before them, they embark on life's journey together with high hopes and strong determination to finally claim everything that was so unjustly taken from them. Alas, the trials are more perilous than anticipated and their happy world is soon torn asunder. With uncertainty and turmoil at every turn, they begin to fear their hard hard work is for naught, because when a king is the lord of everything, what price can one pay to earn the favor of a king?

Elizabeth Chadwick has once again weaved a work of art with her vivid descriptions and ability to tell a most captivating tale. From the ripples cast in a pond at dusk to the warmth felt from a sun warmed stone, this story comes alive from the moment you read the first page! All of the characters were well rounded and had very distinct personalities. As usual, with Chadwick's writing style, the villains were ugly and intense emotion was felt for the main characters. The one thing that held this book back from receiving 5 crowns was the intensity of the plot. After reaching the halfway point of the book, I was still waiting for that crazy moment where everything falls to pieces and the plot twists and jerks you around; and I still found myself looking for that up until the end. That being said, the plot was indeed well thought out and was never dull. Overall this is yet another must read for any Chadwick fan or lover of historical fiction. I will definitely be reading anything I can find by this extremely talented author!

FTC: I received this book from the publisher. As always, these are my own honest opinions.

Copyright © 2010 Svea Love. All Rights Reserved.


Marg said...

Yay, another Chadwick winner!

Blodeuedd said...

I am saving this book for a long journey :) that said, another month until i get to read it

Susan said...

I don't read a lot of historical fiction, so I'm looking forward to getting some good recommendations from you. Happy to have found you via the Hop!

Jeremy said...

I'm stopping by your blog on the Blog Hop and for Follow Friday. I hope you have a beautiful weekend and get lots of reading done. :)

I'm a new follower.

Daphne said...

I'm glad you enjoyed this one!

troutbirder said...

Wonderful blog! I'm mostly a reader of history and biography now but recently stumbled across and read Penmans trilogy of Henry II & Eleanor. I loved it and will be looking for more historical fiction of that era.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

I just love the cover of this book, although I have never read this author?

Jenny Girl said...

I haven't had great luck with EC, but your review makes a compelling case for me to try this one. Thanks Svea :)

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

I loved this one too! Roger and Ida were a fantastic couple!