Days of Sun and Glory (The King’s Greatest Enemy #2) by Anna Belfrage
Publication Date: July 4, 2016
Matador eBook & Paperback; 418 Pages
Series: The King's Greatest Enemy
Genre: Historical Fiction
Adam de Guirande has barely survived the aftermath of Roger Mortimer’s rebellion in 1321. When Mortimer manages to escape the Tower and flee to France, anyone who has ever served Mortimer becomes a potential traitor – at least in the eyes of King Edward II and his royal chancellor, Hugh Despenser. Adam must conduct a careful balancing act to keep himself and his family alive.
Fortunately, he has two formidable allies: Queen Isabella and his wife, Kit. England late in 1323 is a place afflicted by fear. Now that the king’s greatest traitor, Roger Mortimer, has managed to evade royal justice, the king and his beloved Despenser see dissidents and rebels everywhere – among Mortimer’s former men, but also in the queen, Isabella of France. Their suspicions are not unfounded. Tired of being relegated to the background by the king’s grasping favourite, Isabella has decided it is time to act – to safeguard her own position, but also that of her son, Edward of Windsor.
As Adam de Guirande has pledged himself to Prince Edward he is automatically drawn into the queen’s plans – whether he likes it or not. Yet again, Kit and Adam are forced to take part in a complicated game of intrigue and politics. Yet again, they risk their lives – and that of those they hold dear – as the king and Mortimer face off. Once again, England is plunged into war – and this time it will not end until either Despenser or Mortimer is dead.
Days of Sun and Glory is the second in Anna Belfrage’s series, The King’s Greatest Enemy, the story of a man torn apart by his loyalties to his lord, his king, and his wife.
I had limited knowledge of King Edward II, Queen Isabelle, and Mortimer before I started to read this book. And, haven't read the first book (yet), but I found myself quickly drawn into the story. I think Anna Belfrage has really captive a turbulent time when you could in a blink of an eye go from being high and powerful to out of favor and the justice could be both swift and deadly. Not even being king could guaranty your safety.
Adam de Guirande helped Mortimer escape in the previous book and now he is walking a thin line. If it was not for his fidelity to the young crown prince would he probably be dead by now. Despenser is out for him and if he can't get to him directly will he try to hurt him by getting to Adam's wife Kit. It's a difficult time and they have to face-off quite a lot of problems in this book, some quite dangerous since Despenser and the King is suspicious of them. But, they also have to deal with personal problems like an old lover to Adam that shows up at the court. And, if Kit is jealous of Adam's devotion to the Queen is Cassandra's present not helping their relationship. To top it all they also have to face some personal losses.
I found this book to be both engrossing and fascinating to read. It also felt both well-researched the characters felt well-developed. I was especially impressed how genuine the characters felt that I could even find sympathy for the "bad ones". Not everything is black and white and King Edward II may not have been a great king, but his faith and love in Despenser blinded him and driving Isabella away and practically throwing her into the arms of Mortimer was not very wise. There is a moment towards the ending of the book when Mortimer has a conversation with his wife and it's heartbreaking to read her warning to him and his refusal to believe that anything could harm him since the Queen loves him.
I liked this book very much, and I'm looking forward to reading both the first book in this series and the one that comes after this one!
About the Author
Had Anna been allowed to choose, she’d have become a professional time-traveller. As such a profession does as yet not exists, she settled for second best and became a financial professional with two absorbing interests, namely history and writing. These days, Anna combines an exciting day-job with a large family and her writing endeavours.
When Anna fell in love with her future husband, she got Scotland as an extra, not because her husband is Scottish or has a predilection for kilts, but because his family fled Scotland due to religious persecution in the 17th century – and were related to the Stuarts. For a history buff like Anna, these little details made Future Husband all the more desirable, and sparked a permanent interest in the Scottish Covenanters, which is how Matthew Graham, protagonist of the acclaimed The Graham Saga, began to take shape.
Set in 17th century Scotland and Virginia/Maryland, the series tells the story of Matthew and Alex, two people who should never have met – not when she was born three hundred years after him. With this heady blend of romance, adventure, high drama and historical accuracy, Anna hopes to entertain and captivate, and is more than thrilled when readers tell her just how much they love her books and her characters.
Presently, Anna is hard at work with her next project, a series set in the 1320s featuring Adam de Guirande, his wife Kit, and their adventures and misfortunes in connection with Roger Mortimer’s rise to power. The King’s Greatest Enemy is a series where passion and drama play out against a complex political situation, where today’s traitor may be tomorrow’s hero, and the Wheel of Life never stops rolling.
The first installment in the Adam and Kit story, In the Shadow of the Storm, was published in 2015. The second book, Days of Sun and Glory, will be published in July 2016.
Other than on her website, www.annabelfrage.com
, Anna can mostly be found on her blog, http://annabelfrage.wordpress.com
– unless, of course, she is submerged in writing her next novel. You can also connect with Anna on Facebook
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