Read Pale Rose of England by Sandra Worth Online


From the award-winning author of The King's Daughter comes a story of love and defiance during the War of the Roses. It is 1497. The news of the survival of Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, has set royal houses ablaze with intrigue and rocked the fledgling Tudor dynasty. With the support of Scotland's King James IV, Richard-known to most of England as Perkin Warbeck-hasFrom the award-winning author of The King's Daughter comes a story of love and defiance during the War of the Roses. It is 1497. The news of the survival of Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, has set royal houses ablaze with intrigue and rocked the fledgling Tudor dynasty. With the support of Scotland's King James IV, Richard-known to most of England as Perkin Warbeck-has come to reclaim his rightful crown from Henry Tudor. Stepping finally onto English soil, Lady Catherine Gordon has no doubt that her husband will succeed in his quest.But rather than assuming the throne, Catherine would soon be prisoner of King Henry VII, and her beloved husband would be stamped as an imposter. With Richard facing execution for treason, Catherine, alone in the glittering but deadly Tudor Court, must find the courage to spurn a cruel monarch, shape her own destiny, and win the admiration of a nation....

Title : Pale Rose of England
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780425238776
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 450 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Pale Rose of England Reviews

  • Misfit
    2019-06-13 19:37

    History tells us that a young man known as Perkin Warbeck claimed to be the son of Edward IV, one of the lost princes in the tower and the rightful King of England. Supported by his *aunt* Margaret of Burgundy, he eventually came to Scotland and obtained support from King James in his efforts to invade England and regain his *lawful* crown. James gave *Richard* the hand of Lady Catherine Gordon, and she accompanied him during his second attempt to invade England, which was just as unsuccessful as the first. Was Perkin really Richard Duke of York and England's rightful king, or was he a great pretender? We'll never know. Worth begins her novel in 1497 at the start of Richard's campaign in Cornwall, which quickly peters out as he is unable to rally support among the populace. Captured by Henry Tudor's men, they are brought to court and kept on slim leashes and Richard and Catherine play a very tense game of cat and mouse whilst trying to keep their heads intact. Catherine fares a bit better as she's taken into Queen Elizabeth's household, but Richard's every move is watched and members of the Tudor court take turns spitting on him and tossing rotten vegetables (thus showing us how awful they all are). Meantime, mean ole' Henry has taken one look at the beauteous Catherine, goes into immediate lust mode and determines to have her for his very own. Not quite sure what he planned to do about Queen Elizabeth but oh well... Potential readers should be warned that Worth believes Perkin/Richard is the true son of Edward IV, no ifs ands or butts about it. In case you doubt it, we are constantly reminded about his princely bearing and the drooping Plantagenet eye he's inherited from his ancestors Edward I and Henry III. I don't know about you, but I had a hard time swallowing that anyone, whether it be courtier or lowly priest, is up enough on intimate details of the royal family going back that far in time - Edward I (17 June 1239 - 7 July 1307) and Henry III (1 October 1207 - 16 November 1272) - to remember the drooping Plantagenet eye. That's a whole lot of generations between them and Richard and I can't find any others having it. Just sayin'. As for Richard and Catherine, I didn't pick up on much chemistry between the two. They were married and had one child by the time the book begins, and the back-history of their courtship filled out as the story progresses. We know that they love each other because we are told they did, but I really didn't pick up on any grand passion between the two. I did pick up on a lot of purity, perfection and absolute sugar-coated sweetness on Catherine's part, and while Richard might have the bearing of a true king, he sure didn't have a strong nature to go with it. He was kinda (sic) wimpish IMHO but Catherine sure thought he was the cat's meow, "Clad in a white silk doublet, a furred cape around his shoulders, and a beaver hat on his sunny hair, Richard, Duke of York, cantered in on a pale war-horse, a hand resting on his hip, a smile on his lips. She gasped; he was the handsomest man she had ever seen." And to offset all that purity and goodness is the baddest most evil mean nasty awful bad guy ever - Henry Tudor. Honestly, every one in this book is either black or white, there are very few shades of gray to be found here. I think it's obvious I wasn't as enamoured of this book as some of the other reviewers and to each his own when choosing a book, but this one was just a bit too fluffy for my tastes. I was very disappointed that we didn't get a closer look at Elizabeth and what one would expect to be very conflicted emotions - how do you choose between your brother or your son? I was going to give this book an overall three star rating until the latter third covering Catherine's later years threatened to put me to sleep (she spends lots and lots of time in the country). One final note and that is on two items in the author's notes: 1) "English novelist Philippa Gregory, who holds a doctorate in history...". Erm, a simple bit of Google tells me it's English Lit. The historian myth continues. 2) Her reason for sending Richard to his execution via boat instead of how it really happened, "I plead artistic license in not documenting this last indignity and in depicting him as being taken partway by boat. This unfortunate young man had already endured deplorable degradation, and I felt no need to add more such instances to the reader's burden." I for one could have handled that additional burden.

  • Amy Bruno
    2019-05-27 18:43

    I’ve got one word for Sandra Worth’s new novel Pale Rose of England – PHENOMENAL! At times heartwarming and at others heart wrenching, this novel runs the gamut of emotions and magnificently details the lives of Catherine Gordon and the man whose identity was at the heart of one of the biggest controversies in England’s history.Whether Perkin Warbeck was in fact the lost prince in the tower is a mystery which may never be solved. Worth’s belief that the man who returned to England in 1495 calling himself Richard Plantagenet was truly the one time heir to the English throne was quite convincing and it’s from this point of view that the novel is written. Backed by his aunt Margaret, the Duchess of Burgundy and his uncle by marriage King James IV of Scotland, Richard sets out to England with his pregnant wife Catherine to claim his crown back from Henry Tudor. But the couple’s initial hopefulness is dimmed when the English people fail to rally to his cause and they finally realize that Richard’s youth and inexperience are no match to the merciless and tough as nails Henry VII. Ultimately, both Richard and Catherine become prisoners of Henry’s, where they are subjected to humiliation and degradation at court, culminating to a horrendous ending for Richard.Despite all the fighting and drama, at the heart of Pale Rose of England is love. The love shared between Catherine and Richard was legendary and as the reader you can feel all the genuineness and devotion reverberating off the page. In fact, the one sentence that has been attributed to Catherine Gordon was her refusal to accept a gift and proposal from Henry VII (whom had fallen in love with her), stating “It is the man, and not the king, I love.” Catherine’s courage and resilience regardless of the circumstances set before her was inspiring, her belief in her husband was unwavering and her love for him unfaltering. This was truly one of the most touching and beautiful novels I have read to date! My only advice…keep some Kleenex handy!If you’re like me you’ll want to know more about the Perkin Warbeck story and Worth has recommended both Ann Roe’s book The Perfect Prince and Mary Shelley’s The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck: A Romance.Favorite Quote: “Love is worth everything we have to pay.”

  • Jerelyn
    2019-06-06 15:41

    I don't like to say bad things about books I know that authors work very hard to write things that people will like but I just have to say. I want my money back!I found the characters syrupy, one dimensional and wholly unlikeable. I could have care less about Catherine Gordon, or Richard of York/Perkin Warbeck. When I pick up a novel that wants me to suspend my beliefs and just try to imagine this might be true I want to be convinced. When I finish I want to think yes this sounds plausible. I have serious Yorkist leanings anyway, but this book served no purpose. It wasn't even a good love story. So I give it 1/2 star for good cover art.

  • Hannah Elizabeth
    2019-06-08 17:35

    So, Perkin Warbeck really was the Duke of York? I wonder how the (Ricardian)author feels about the letter Warbeck wrote to Isabella of Castile in which he detailed his life story; about how his "unnatural uncle", Richard of Gloucester, murdered his older brother (King Edward V, and delivered him (Wabreck) to the home of an unnamed Nobleman to be dispatched in similar fashion. Funnily enough that letter, in which the blame for the deaths of the Princes is laid directly at Richard III's feet, is totally omitted from the story. Instead the Tudors get the blame (*yawn*).I like my Historic Fiction to be balanced, based on ALL evidence, and with at least a stab at being fair to all sides. This is Ricardian Propaganda at its most vile.

  • Jemidar
    2019-05-31 12:49

    I read this novel because I wanted to find out more about Catherine Gordon but was very disappointed because this book was more sugary, candy floss romance (and it didn't even do that very well) than informative historical fiction. What "facts" were included were questionable at best and ridiculous at worst, because the authors obvious bias and Yorkist agenda were clearly visible. Only read this book if you like your historical fiction pink and fluffy, and you don't mind if the characters you are reading about bear little or no resemblance to the historical figures they claim to be. If you like your HF novels meaty and reasonably accurate then this is not the book for you.I've now read three of Ms Worth's novels and I'm afraid this will be my last. She is clearly not an author for me :-(.

  • Nattie
    2019-05-20 14:26

    This may have been good, but I just couldn't read it. It did nothing to get my attention to make me want to try harder. I started getting an ache in my eye.

  • Natalie Grueninger
    2019-05-30 12:36

    To say that I really enjoyed this book is an understatement. The truth is it’s an extraordinary story – moving, intriguing, confronting, inspiring and beautifully written.The protagonist, Lady Catherine Gordon, is strong and courageous in the face of gut-wrenching tragedy. Her unquestionable loyalty to her first husband and her ability to move forward in the pursuit of happiness, when most would have crumbled, make her fascinating and inspiring.So involved was I in Catherine’s plight that scenes from the story crept into my dreams. I was incapable of disconnecting from the events that were so vividly brought to life and expertly woven with accurate period detail.As Lady Catherine’s fair-haired babe was ripped from her arms, I clutched mine a little tighter.I shared in Catherine’s agony as her handsome husband was humiliated, tortured and executed.I found myself rejoicing when love and happiness blossomed once more for the Scottish princess and on a number of occasions read through tear stained eyes.Prior to reading this book my loyalties were firmly placed with the Tudors but I must admit that Sandra’s story has me questioning my loyalties.A seed of doubt has been planted and now I find myself wondering what if ‘Perkin Warbeck’ was who he claimed to be? What if Henry VII executed the rightful heir to the throne? What if he knowingly murdered his wife’s brother?Little evidence exists to prove that ‘Perkin’ was a ‘boatman’s son’ as Henry Tudor claimed, apart from a confession extracted under torture. And what man would not confess under such unimaginable horrors?I believe that more evidence exits to suggest that he was more than just an impostor, including Henry’s own incriminating actions.To find out more about Perkin Warbeck read Sandra Worth’s article ‘Uncovering the Mystery of Perkin Warbeck’: find out more about this fabulous author read my interview with Sandra here: highly recommend this book and look forward to reading more of Sandra’s work.

  • Audra (Unabridged Chick)
    2019-06-01 16:48

    This is the kind of historical novel that reminds me why I love the genre. It's meaty, it's exciting, it's engrossing, it's romantic, it's chilling, and it's absolutely un-put-down-able. This era (reign of Henry VII) is one I'm wholly unfamiliar with but Worth sets up the story and characters so well, I didn't find myself lost or confused or in need of an encyclopedia.The novel tells the story of Catherine Gordon, a Scottish noblewoman who is married to the man said to be the true King of England, Richard Plantagenet/Perkin Warbeck, even though he is branded an imposter by the reigning monarch, Henry VII. The plot covered in this novel is exciting enough, but I found Worth's characters to be so interesting and real, I cared about all of them -- even the horrible Henry VII.The romantic, clearly loving marriage between Catherine and Richard anchored the story for me; in an era when (I imagine) love matches were rare, Worth's depiction of these two made me fall in love with them -- and made me deeply invested in the survival of their marriage and family. At many times, I wished Worth would just lie and give me a few chapters of their bucolic happiness in a country estate, I liked them so much. This novel, however, encompasses so much more than just their marriage, and is really about Catherine Gordon -- not the Tudors nor Perkin Warbeck.Worth's skill as an author really shows in the development of Catherine. I imagine it must be challenging to imagining a historical figure wholly and envision why they responded or acted the way they did in a way that remains true to history and true to the author's conception of them. Worth's Catherine is a complicated woman who responds to the circumstances around her and does what she deems most moral and true to herself, and I found I genuinely liked her (even if I didn't agree with her opinions or life choices).I can't recommend this novel enough -- I just loved it and resented having to work rather than read! And, happily, Worth has published five other books for me to go back and devour while I wait for her newest!

  • Regina Lindsey
    2019-06-06 12:45

    Pale Rose of England by Sandra Worth3 StarsHistory holds a number of fascinating mysteries. One of those deals with the fate of Edward IV's sons. Were they murdered in the Tower? If so, by whom? Their Uncle Richard? The future Tudor King, Henry VII? Duke of Buckingham? Or.....did they actually survive? Worth take the position that Perkin Warbeck was indeed the youngest son - that young Richard survived, matured, and married Catherine Gordon, niece to King James of Scotland. Worth states in her Author's Note that she believes Perkins to truly be Ricahrd IV, and she presents a persuasive case on the surface. With so little information left about the central characters I can imagine developing a story like this is gratifying for an author. But, Worth's writing style is not for me. She is melodramatic, relies on grandiloquent phrases to convey love rather than build emotional connection for the reader, and is incredibly repitive. Further, I originally planned to give her credit for her Author's Note. I don't take issue when an author takes artistic license as long as it is admitted. Worth, to her credit does that. I also give her credit for giving both sides of the argument related to the authenticity of Perkins' claims. As I continued to read, what made me uncomfortable were some obvious inaccuracies. That always gives me pause regarding the veracity of the author's other claims. I ended up giving it a three because I was completely unaware of how convinced so many people were of Perkins' authenticity. Of course, there is that Plantangent eye trait that Worth will tell you about over and over, but he would have to present a very convincing case to persuade so many European leaders to his his cause. I don't think I would read another work from this author, but I'm glad I read this one.

  • Ashley Parsons
    2019-06-12 19:25

    I found this book oddly calming. I enjoyed the entire text, but my favorite part was the small section of author commentary at the end. It makes you appreciate the amount of work that goes into a historical fiction, but also lets you see, quite transparently, the amount of imagination that can be employed as well.

  • amanda
    2019-06-07 12:22

    I thought Anne Easter Smith abused the word "'tis"—that was before I read this. The first part of the book could have been interesting, had it been paced differently & began at a different point in time. The second half drags horribly so, & I never could warm to Catherine Gordon; I felt very much unattached to her all throughout. Disappointing, as I had been expecting a lot more.

  • Donna Gavin
    2019-05-22 12:43

    I enjoyed reading this book about Lady Catherine Gordon. She lead a fascinating life and overcame tremendous obstacles. It was heartening to learn that she did find love later in her life. The book is very well written and it made me want to learn more about Catherine Gordon and Perkin Warbeck.

  • Lizzie
    2019-06-05 16:36

    Another smashing novel to add to the list of hot historical fiction releases of 2011. “Pale Rose of England” is a prime example of why I love historical fiction so much. The lovely Sandra has always been one of my favorites, ever since my husband gave me “The Kings Daughter” for Christmas I have followed Sandra in her releases. I was ecstatic when I found out she was going to be releasing a new novel. What is most appealing about this novel is for once it is a heroine that I do not know every detail of their life. It is refreshing to read a new story and find a new heroine that I truly can admire.Catherine Gordon, young cousin of King James IV of Scotland was a worldly renownded great beauty. Dark glossy locks, “eyes like jewels”, a royal barring, and above all else in my mind she is one of the most courageous women I have ever had the pleasure of reading about. Since Catherine was Scottish nobility she possessed that untamable Scottish highlander courage and strength. Being as beautiful as she was courageous Catherine I believe possessed the two attributes that would later come in handy in saving herself from complete destruction. Her life took a monumental turn when her “loving” cousin King James sent her a gift of velvet with a request to come to court. King James had plans for Catherine to come to court because the famous wandering prince Richard Duke of York was paying a visit to the Scottish court in search of support to his claim for the English throne. For the pair it was true love at first sight. With cousin James promising his support of Richard plight he also gave his blessing for their wedding.The married life agreed with the two love birds and they quickly had one child “Dickon” with another quickly on the way. Problems had arisen in Scotland between Richard and King James and the couple decided it was best for them to quit Scotland and go in pursuit of Richard’s claim to England. With Richard being backed by his aunt Margaret of York, Duchess of Burgundy they decided it was time to pay England a little visit. They came to England with a purpose and Richard was able to raise troops to his cause to fight the “usurper” vile Henry Tudor. With naive dreams of reclaiming the crown the young loving family would find out first hand just how vile calculating King Henry VII of England really could be.With no other choice but to surrender Richard found his rebellion had failed and he was surrounded and cornered by Tudor in every possible way. King Henry gave a false pretense to Richard to lure him out of sanctuary that his family would be safe from his harm and while he made his way to Henry’s tower he found his only thoughts were of his beloved Catherine. Catherine was told of Richard’s capture from Tudor’s henchmen that were sent to take her captive. Under great duress Catherine lost her unborn babe. It was not just Richard that had caused Catherine’s great distress; Tudor had also stolen her young son Dickon and at that moment Catherine’s world as she knew it completely came undone in one day. With no other choice but to go to King Henry’s court, Catherine was now Henry’s prisoner and trophy. Upon her arrival at court she was quick to discover that cold calculating Henry Tudor had a weakness and shockingly to Catherine he “coveted her person”. She did the only thing she could do, raised her chin to the indignities that were thrown upon her with a defiant no. She never gave up hope that someday she might be able to sway Henry into releasing the man she loved and restoring her stolen babe to her.5++++/5 powerfully intoxicating! I never have read a novel that has a primary focus is Catherine Gordon and I am not sure if even many of them exist. I love that Sandra chose to start “Pale Rose of England” off where famous author Mary Shelly left off in her novel “The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck” written in 1830. I loved this book because it is a fresh take on the lost princes in the tower. Catherine was an impeccable woman that even under great duress she stood her ground and defied a king for the man that was the other half to her soul. Is that not what love is all about, unwavering, unconditional, overpowering emotion that we feel at our core, love? I have to admit after reading this and knowing what it could possibly have been like to have been an enemy of Henry VII, I will never be able to see Henry in the same light again. I have always viewed Henry’s mother Margaret Beaufort as a War of the Roses villain. I guess I never put two and two together that she would spawn evil too. I highly recommend this novel to newcomers of the War of the Roses period. This novel does not go into too much of the nitty gritty details of the war which can be overwhelming. It would be wonderful to follow up with Sandra’s “Rose of York” series.FTC-Sent by PublisherPG-13 Rating for violence

  • Heather
    2019-06-02 11:43

    This story takes on a unique subject in the genre of historical fiction – that of the quest of Richard, Duke of York to reclaim his throne, but he is known to the world as Perkin Warbeck, the pretender to the throne. I love when authors take on a subject that has very rarely been written about. In my opinion, Sandra Worth does Richard much justice. He was just waiting for the right author to come along and write his story. Her writing style really allows you to connect with Richard and uncover his thoughts and feelings and motivations. The author also presents and very convincing case that suggests the person known as Perkin Warbeck was really Richard. Honestly Richard was a character you could easily fall in love with. I haven’t encountered one of those since William Marshall and Roger Bigod from The Greatest Knight and For the King’s Favor respectively.At the same time, this book is a story of Catherine Gordon and the adversity that she faces being married to Richard and then later having to live in the court of Henry VII, the great enemy of her husband. Her and Richard really were fighting an uphill battle throughout the whole book and I just kept thinking, “could they ever catch a break!?”.All of the books I have read where Henry VII was involved, he played a minor character and I was never really given enough information to even have an opinion about him. In Pale Rose of England Henry is very much a key player in the story and I really came to despise him – he just caused problem after problem for our protagonists. Another thing that I really enjoyed about the characters in this book was that it wasn’t your typical Tudor cast of characters. You had Catherine and Richard, as well as King James of Scotland, James Strangeways (courtier to Henry and her eventual second husband), and Matthew Craddock (her eventual third husband) as well as several of the sisters of Elizabeth of York (Cecily, Anne, Catherine and Bridget). It was great to see a little more of who was who in this time period.A truly wonderful read that will pull on your heartstrings.This book was received for review from the publisher - I was not compensated for my opinions and the above is my honest review.

  • Jean V. Naggar Literary
    2019-05-20 14:37

    “Worth's study...moves into one of the most intriguing and scrutinized aspects of history...Through the eyes of...Lady Catherine Gordon, the rebellion takes on new light. Worth creates a love story amidst war, a history filled with glorious people and an unforgettable female character who triumphs when others fail; whose faith and love move a king and who has been lost to history until now.” --Romantic Times, 4 ½ stars“5 stars out of 5. Powerfully intoxicating! Another smashing novel.” --Historically Obsessed “Worth's novels offer a well-researched, beautifully written, and exciting journey into Plantagenet England. Her passion for the time period shines through in all her works.”“Fans of The Other Boleyn Girl...will appreciate the attention to detail, the intense love story, and the heartbreaking saga of Lady Catherine. Fans of historical romance will find their assumptions challenged and ultimately rewarded. Fans of historical fiction will love the great care with which Sandra Worth treats real events of history, and yet the startling beauty with which she illustrates one of history's mysterious figures.” --Enduring Romance Blog“Awash in murder, romance and the excesses of ruthless royal power, PALE ROSE OF ENGLAND races along unfolding a tale that cries out to be told. Written with grace and heart, it is at once tender and terrifying.” --Robin Maxwell, bestselling author of SIGNORA DA VINCI“Worth has crafted a fascinating, vivid tale.” --C.W. Gortner, author of THE CONFESSIONS OF CATHERINE DE MEDICI“Fascinating...The world of violent storms on rocky coasts, monasteries, gardens, and the court is so real you can touch it, as are the people, from monarchs to serving maids.” —Stephanie Cowell, author of CLAUDE AND CAMILLE

  • Patty
    2019-06-03 19:24

    I knew a little about the tale of "the pretender" Perkin Warbeck before I read this wonderful novel but after I wanted to know more. I love a book that sends me researching. This tale of Lady Catherine Gordon and the alleged son of Richard Plantagenet will steal your heart. It is so very sad. Was Perkin Warbeck one of the Princes in the Tower? We will never really know for sure but after reading this book I am convinced.The story is really about Lady Catherine as her life went on for many years after the death of Perkin. She was a remarkable woman in a dangerous time. She must have been something and Ms. Worth has crafted a book from limited information left to history. It is richly detailed and an excellent read. The first part is so very exciting as the two of them plan their lives as King and Queen of England but then after Perkin is captured the overwhelming mood is of such despair that it almost pours from the page.Ms. Worth's writing is such that you feel you are there experiencing what the characters are feeling and it can be uncomfortable but that is what good writing can do. The third part encompasses Catherine dealing with Henry VII's passion for her and her subsequent marriages. I was happy she was able to survive such an obnoxious manI found it to be one of those books that I didn't want to leave. Excellent writing and fascinating characters.

  • Lisa Bass
    2019-06-15 14:43

    I know, I say this about virtually every book I have read; but, I truly enjoyed Pale Rose of England. I have just recently read Alison Weir's book, The Princes in the Tower and was ALMOST convinced that neither of Edward IV's sons survived their stay in The Tower, when Richard III took the English throne. However, after reading the Pale Rose of England, and the manner in which Sandra Worth presents the lives of Catherine Gordon and Richard ("Perkin") Duke of York, I believe the younger prince may have possibly survived.This story is touching, at the same time tragically sad; but the one thing which pervades this story is the remarkable strength of Catherine Gordon, and they hope she had which never died.

  • Laurie
    2019-06-03 16:51

    I found this a very interesting British historical fiction read centered on the life story of Lady Catherine Gordon and her husband, who claims to be Richard Plantagenet, one of the two princes of England taken to the Tower of London. When he comes out of hiding, after missing for years, Richard struggles to prove his identity and assert his rightful position. Be sure to read the author's notes providing her historical support and reasoning for Richard's identity at the end. Although the story of Richard is gripping, it is just a piece of the novel, within the dramatic story of Catherine's life. You will be swept away by Catherine's inner strength as she marries four times, creating a new life for herself each time and struggling with her grief, heartache and politics along the way. Amazing read!

  • Babs
    2019-06-14 12:41

    I have always heard the prince was not who he said he was. It's a great mystery no one will really be able to tell us what is truth and what is myth. I enjoyed the book for that main reason and to learn more about Catherine. She truly believed who Richard was and loved him until her death. Even though she married 3 times after, she still held a spot in her life just for him. Sandra writes as if she lived in the same era. The descriptions are so detailed you can easily imagine yourself sitting beside or walking along with the characters. The research as you can tell from the book is well-played out. I will be reading the other books Sandra has out as they do keep you turning the pages.

  • Joy
    2019-05-24 18:21

    For a review check my blog! :)

  • Tudor Book Blog
    2019-06-18 13:42

    A The Tudor Book Blog Review( novel is set during the reign of Henry VII. It follows Catherine and Richard (Perkin Warbeck) as they attempt to seize the English throne. Richard claims to be Richard, Duke of York, the youngest of the Princes in the Tower. Catherine, the daughter of a Scottish noble and cousin to King James, marries Richard and, after his defeat, joins the English court as a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth. The novel follows Catherine through her next three marriages, to her death in 1537.My Thoughts:Overall, I really enjoyed this novel. Personally, I am a huge fan of third-person novels. However, a lot of people prefer first-person because you really get inside the main character's head. Though Pale Rose... is in third-person, Worth did a good job of relating the story through Catherine's point of view. For example, Catherine firmly believes, without a shadow of a doubt, that Richard is Richard, Duke of York, thus you believe it too.I also really liked how one can tell Worth has done her research. The time period comes alive in the smallest details. Worth even provides an author's note at the end of the story to explain the history behind her novel. I feel this is extremely important when writing historical fiction.Another highlight of the novel is how Worth shows Perkin Warbeck as, without a doubt, the youngest of the Princes in the Tower. Few historians believe that Perkin Warbeck was Richard, Duke of York. However, Worth offers a few valid arguments to support he was. She goes into detail about his handsome appearance (which greatly resembled the real Richard's father, King Edward IV, including his "Plantagenet eye"), his courtly and royal air (quite unlike the uneducated peasant Henry VII makes him out to be), and the fact that many European monarchs supported him (including James of Scotland, who allowed Warbeck to marry his niece) even after he was captured and was of no political use to them.Though two bodies were found in the Tower in the 1600's, and thought to be the two Princes, DNA testing has not been performed, and the mystery remains unsolved.Lastly, I really liked how Worth chose a time period few Tudor authors venture to. Her characters are barely mentioned in other Tudor novels (or even history books), but are well developed in hers. She barely mentions Henry VIII and "The Great Matter," but focuses on Richard and his quest to take the English Throne. Just think, if he had there would have been no "Great Matter!"One thing I did not like about the story was how the author seemed to skim over Catherine's later life. Each chapter became a whole new chunk of time in her life. I would have rather the author break the novel into two novels, and focus more attention on Catherine's life before and during her marriage to Richard. The novel picks up right before their defeat by Henry VII. I would have rather had a few chapters going into more detail about their meeting, marriage, etc.Worth also attempts to show that Henry VII was in love with Catherine. Of course, this makes for a great story, but it is not factual. Firstly, most Tudor historians do not think Henry VII had extramarital affairs. Secondly, looking at Henry VII's treatment of Catherine, there isn't much cause to think he thought anything of her. He did give her large gifts of clothing, but this was about the time his daughter married the King of Scotland. Of course he wanted to treat the King of Scotland's niece well...Worth also shows Catherine and Richard as having a son. There is no historical evidence of this.Ok, I will admit that these last two can't really be counted as "dislikes." This is a fictional account, and it makes for a good story :)Overall, I really enjoyed this novel and give it Four Tudor Roses.

  • Donna
    2019-05-30 15:50

    Very little is known about Lady Catherine Gordon of Scotland, married to a man who claimed to be the rightful heir to the English throne. We know she was beautiful. We know King Henry VII — whose throne her husband claimed was his — became obsessed with her from the moment he first saw her and remained so until the day he died. And we know the only 10 words ever attributed to her, when Henry was trying to make her renounce her husband: 'It is the man, and not the king, I love.'That makes it even more remarkable that Sandra Worth was able to write a fantastic novel, 'Pale Rose of England,' imagining Catherine's eventful life.Worth's novel is a great history lesson. In brief, when Edward IV died, his brother, Richard III — the one of which Shakespeare wrote — imprisoned Edward's sons and heirs in the Tower of London. The 'Princes in the Tower' were assumed to have been killed, though some historians believe one died of illness — life was tough before antibiotics — and the other was taken away at the direction of his uncle for his safety.Years later, a young man named Perkin Warbeck announced that he was that young prince, Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, King Richard IV. His aunt, the Duchess of Burgundy, attested he was her long-lost nephew. The Holy Roman Emperor also supported him.Indeed, this supposed boatman's son was skilled in many of the activities at which young princes of that time were expected to excel, such as playing the lute and riding horses. He also had an unusual eye defect that ran in the line of Plantagenet kings. In Scotland, he and Catherine met, fell in love and were married. They sailed to England so he could take his rightful place on the throne.Unfortunately, one thing Richard wasn't skilled in was warfare. He was captured, and he and his wife were captives of Henry for years. Their infant son had been taken away from them and moved to a secret location. They were not allowed to be alone together so they couldn't produce another heir who would be a threat to Henry. After escaping from the tower, Richard inevitably was executed, but that's not where 'Pale Rose' ends.Worth depicts Catherine as a woman deeply in love with her husband and one who never doubted he was the true king. She's also a brokenhearted mother determined to find her lost son. This becomes the guiding force of her life, even as she goes on to remarry three times.This is the second of Worth's books I've read, and I've become a huge fan of hers. She manages to give the reader a history lesson clothed in sumptuous gowns, glittering jewels, love, heartbreak and intrigue. And with her portrait of the feisty Catherine, she leaves you wanting more.

  • J.M. Cornwell
    2019-06-20 11:35

    A novel of historical authenticity with a less than engrossing story. In the short time of her marriage to King Richard IV, the only surviving son of King Edward, who was believed to be murdered by Richard III, Catherine and her baby and ladies follow Richard Plantagenet to England to begin the struggle to regain his throne from the Tudor usurper, King Henry VII. Richard Plantagenet, known as Perkin Warbeck in England, is considered an imposter with intentions of stealing the English crown, but his bearing and likeness to his father Edward is too marked to be missed. Catherine is certain Richard will succeed in regaining his throne because a soothsayer told her she would be loved by a king. Such was not the case and soon Catherine finds herself separated from her child, Richard captured, and on her way, shortly after miscarrying a second child, to the court of King Henry VII where the real meaning of the prophecy will cause Catherine pain and sorrow. Sandra Worth demonstrates once again why her literary journeys into England’s past in the wake of the War of the Roses have been so popular. Pale Rose of England, as her previous forays, is well written with a wealth of historical minutiae that sets the tone and pace of the novel. Less well done, at least in this instance, is the manner in which Worth provides connections to Catherine's and Richard’s fates. Employing an omniscient point of view, Worth jumps from one character to another without sufficient time to become involved with the previous character, making it difficult to forge sympathy and empathy for the various characters’ plights. Before one scene and character takes the stage, Worth moves to another scene and another point of view. The pace is rapid and erratic at first and does not settle down until well into the book at a point after where many would have stopped reading.Worth’s writing is rich and evocative, if hurried, but once she settles into the main body of the story where Catherine is under the control of King Henry VII, the pace evens out and the story unfolds more clearly and subtly.There is a clear sense of place and time in Pale Rose of England and the court of parsimonious Henry Tudor comes alive in all its awful, wonderful, glittering splendor. It is where Catherine takes on solidity and depth as well. Pale Rose of England is uneven, hurried, and unsatisfying in the beginning, moving to a richer and subtler prose that evokes the Tudor court in all its shapes and shadows.

  • Viviane Crystal
    2019-05-25 15:25

    "Even so, she had brought to mind a pale rose that shines bright against the gloom of downcast skies." Lady Catherine Gordon joyfully fell in love with the long-lost Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York. He was presumed dead after being imprisoned in the infamous Tower of London by King Henry VII of England, but it turns out he was kidnapped and raised abroad as Perkin Warbeck. Now hiding in Scotland, he finds his true love, is befriended and supported by King James of Scotland, and prepares to claim his rightful place as King Richard IV. This Prince Richard has doubts about his potential success for he knows his enemy, the wily, cruel, obsessive Henry, who knows he has not the love of his people but rules by fear, oppression, and spying. Catherine is the bolster behind Richard's dread of the future, the force that finally impassions him enough to sally forth to do battle in a turning historical moment. The remainder of the story is one of tightrope-walking for survival in which Richard is labeled a traitorous coward, as well as a fraud; and Catherine desperately plays King Henry VII who has deeply fallen in love with her. As she manages to hold his attraction but reject his advances, she waits for word of the whereabouts of one she loves more than life, hints arriving from those who secretly affirm her cause and whose admiration for her stamina increases over time. The story may seem proverbial in one sense, but Sandra Worth has depicted her characters in this novel in a refreshing, profound, and powerful manner. The artist's pen herein depicts every significant character in his or her complex personality. The reader is riveted not only by Richard's transitions from despair to giddy certitude and back again, but also by the almost tender, pleading, and desperately needy revelations of King Henry to Catherine. These latter, vulnerable moments enable her to pity this man whom she really hates for the barbaric hate and cruelty he displays at a moment's notice. The author even shows him in both extremes in such a convincing manner that at times one holds one's breath from the tension of not knowing which side will burst forth. So Catherine proves herself to be a multi-faceted character - read it yourself to relish this beautiful portrayal of a noble, tender, sharp, and formidable character. The Pale Rose of England: A Novel of the Tudors is a story that must be told, in all its vicissitudes, for this tale brings us characters who wear distinctive, admirable laurels of personal victory on every page! Magnificent literary feat!

  • Amanda
    2019-05-28 19:28

    Labeled as "A Novel of the Tudors," Pale Rose of England tells the story of a different period of Tudors -who may not be who you suspect. Told through the eyes of a virtually unknown woman, Pale Rose explores part of King Henry VII's reign, particularly his rival for the throne, Richard, who claims to be the lost son of the last king, King Edward of York, and the aftermath of Richard's downfall. Specifically, Pale Rose of England takes Catherine Gordon, little more than a footnote in the scheme of history, and makes her the focus of this tale of romance, intrigue, trust and, of course, the Tudors.The story opens shortly before Richard is captured by Henry VII, taking a little time out to go back and talk a little bit about Catherine and Richard's history (well, only a little bit) and how they came to this. Once Richard is captured and forced to denounce his claims as the son of King Edward and true king of England, he becomes a prisoner and is branded a foreigner. Catherine finds herself as a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth, and, as she tries to put her life back together, catches the eye of the king. Pale Rose of England was my first Sandra Worth novel. As a fan of Jeanne Westin, Susan Holloway Scott and Philippa Gregory, I tend to go for these kinds of historical novels with intrigue, romance and fabulous female characters. Lady Catherine's story had so much promise, and while Worth did a lovely job of capturing the period and creating a realistic conflict for our heroine. But something about Pale Rose of England felt like it was laking to me. Especially after reading the blurb, I thought this would talk more about her time with Richard and their rebellion against Henry VII -but that was only about the first quarter (or less) of the story. I just felt like there must have been so many interesting things that happened prior to the events of that novel and, frankly, I was more interested in them than I was in some of the events of the story itself! Not that it was boring or bad by any means, but I feel like it could have been better and more intriguing. In fact, Pale Rose of England read a little but like a sequel rather than a stand-alone novel.But don't let that deter you from this book. It's filled with lush historical detail, conflict and romance worthy of any Tudor-period novel. I guess I just felt like there was even more fertile ground here that just wasn't explored. But, despite its shortcomings, a worthwhile read.

  • Sarah Cass
    2019-06-09 13:48

    It is the man, and not the king, I love. ~Lady Catherine GordonSandra Worth, captivated by one powerful 10-word statement has crafted a compelling novel that you'll find impossible to put down.In 1497 the Tudor line has wrested the throne away from the Plantagenet line. King Henry VII will stop at nothing to secure the Kingdom for his line. The news of the survival of Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, the son of King Edward and next in line for the throne threatens the very crown on his head. For this reason alone, he will do all in his power to stop the young fledgling king from succeeding in proving his claim.Lady Catherine Gordon, however, is young and very in love with her husband. Never does she dream what trying to gain a throne that belongs to her husband would destroy every bit of the world she knows.Sandra Worth follows the story of this young, sometimes naive young woman into the depths of a darkness unimaginable. Through it all, Catherine never stops hoping, never stops loving, never stops using her strength and intelligence to keep herself alive, and free of a king's affections.Weaving the depth of research, and creating a character with a soul so deep and rich that you feel like this is a woman you would like to have as your friend. Catherine manages to stand tall in a world crashing against her, humiliating her and her husband, but that leaves her with brief bursts of joy.After Richard (or "The Pretender" as Henry VII calls him) is executed, Catherine lives in mourning. For the loss of her husband, and the son that was ripped from her arms. Carrying this mourning with her, she still manages to fight off the advances of a King, and form friendships in a world that seems so against her. Despite endless tragedy, Catherine never stops holding her head up. She has her innocence ripped from her, but not her pride. She never abandons hope, or love.You will want to know her.You'll be glad that Sandra used the power of her words, her skill at weaving a story, to take that one 10 word phrase and bring to life this long forgotten character.

  • Terra
    2019-06-03 15:35

    This is such a heart felt story of what True Love really is that it will toy with your emotions like a cat plays with a mouse. I so admire our heroine Catherine for not only her total dedication to her husband and the love she has for him but for her courage to stand up against that which is wrong even in the light of extreme danger to those whom she loves most dearly.Lady Catherine Gordon, cousin to Scotland's King James IV is a beauty of such rare quality in both looks and manner. Her elegance is what lands her the long lost Duke of York whom is the rightful heir to England's throne and a threat to Henry VII.Wedded bliss in short in duration as Catherine and Richard head to England to fight for what is by blood and right his, the English throne. Perils plague them along the way but this is but a minor nuisance compared to what awaits them as the days progress into weeks, months and years.As Richard is captured by King Henry and then guards are sent out to bring back to the castle Catherine and a separate set of guards take their child to places unknown, Catherine and Richard are put to the ultimate test of faith, love and hope as they are tested beyond extremes. King Henry is a fool though as to think that he can break a love so rich as it shines like Heaven's Golden Glow. You have to give King Henry credit for trying though by any and all means but alas it's not to be, Catherine his Black Swan whom he feel instantly in love with at first sight is not to be his come Hell or High Water.Our author has given us a rare treat of purity in it's most primitive form. Love, true and real love is not to be trifled with for it will forestall all who brook against it and will most assuredly last not only in this lifetime but in all eternity to come.

  • Elaine
    2019-06-03 12:24

    Completing the Tudor trilogy with this one, which focuses on the lives of Lady Catherine Gordon, and Richard Plantagenet-and once again, Worth has delivered a very readable and enjoyable novel.Daughter of an elite Scottish family, Catherine falls in love with Richard of York-the Prince from the tower who "escaped".We follow their all to short life together-and I was impressed with the way in whch she made the characters so alive.King Henry removes their son, and holds him hostage for 20 oddyears-but nevere does Catherine give up hope of being reunited with him. She marries a further twice (and the conclusion of the novel leaves the reader wondering if there will be another marriage on the cards!) I found the novel was well paced-although the middle section was a bit laborious at times-although we knew what would happen, she really did drag it out until the final scenes.I wonder if it would have been more cohesive if this section was somewhat shorter.One further minor complaint. Catherine had been told by a fortune teller that she "would be loved by a King". She interpreted this as Richard becoming king, and this was her main argument for persuading Richard to rebel against Henry.Many readers will quickly tumble to the fact that the statement should be taken at face value-ie, a king would fall in love with her-it was never suggested that this king had her as his queen!The descriptions of the countryside were also a joy to read-as was events outwith the realm of the main protagonists.All in all, there is something for everyone-political intrigue,a moving love story, and a glimpse of the hardships of life in this era. Highly recommended.

  • AllisonMacias
    2019-05-21 14:32

    Catherine Gordon, a Scottish beauty and nephew to King James IV, is married to Richard, the Duke of York and the rightful King of England. Their marriage is a happy one, full of love and political promise. Catherine and Richard, along with their young son sail to England to take back the throne from the usurper Henry Tudor. Full of youth and promise, they believe the English will welcome them with open arms. Defeated and captured, their young son is taken from them. They spend the next few years living in fear in the Tudor Court. Henry, who is married to Richard's sister, longs to make Catherine his own and be rid of Richard once and for all. Political pressures keep Richard a prisoner and Catherine a hostage. After much abuse, Richard wishes for death and is executed. Catherine is relieved that Richard is free, but is heartbroken. Still a captive of England, she is given land and starts to make a new life for herself.This book was an amazing story. History maintains that it was Perkin Warbeck who married Catherine Gordon and landed on England's shores. Sandra Worth presents the story of the living prince, Richard. Catherine is forced to face many adversities. The reader watches as her life that was full of promise as England's queen is transformed into a captive pseudo widow. When she is finally a widow, the reader's heart breaks for the grieving Catherine. Even in her grief, Catherine holds her head high and defies the will of Henry VII. This book was heartbreaking and endearing all at the same time. I think I cried through a third of the book. Bravo Sandra Worth

  • Marcie
    2019-06-07 11:34

    I must confess that I love history, especially when it comes to the Tudors. I've read one other book by Sandra Worth, The King's Daughter. I really enjoyed that book so I was eager to read this one as well. This novel is about Lady Catherine Gordon of Scotland and her marriage to Richard Plantagenet. Richard claims to be the authentic heir to the English throne. King Henry VII will not rest until every threat to his crown is eliminated. Henry mocks Richard and calls him Perkin Warbeck. Catherine Gordon believes whole heartedly Richard is who he claims to be. This book had me captivated. Sandra Worth wrote a compelling novel. I'm not that familiar with Catherine Gordon or Richard Plantagenet but I feel like I know them after reading this book. Of course this book is fiction but Worth does her research well. This book starts with the arrival of the young naive couple on English shores. They have big dreams and lofty goals. However fate had different plans for Richard and Catherine. Their lives are full of heartache, loss, and grief. Catherine is a strong character. She is beautiful, smart and loyal. My heart broke for her many times while reading this book. This book is an emotional roller coaster ride but in a good way. Worth's portrayal of these historical characters is amazing. I found myself hating them and sympathizing with them at the same time. Overall this book is great. I strongly recommend it.