Saturday, 5 September 2015

The Sister Queens

by Sophie Perinot

Rating: 4/5


Pages: 503
Publisher:  NAL
Publication Date: 2012
ISBN: 9780451235701
Summary (via Goodreads)

Patient, perfect, and used to being first, Marguerite becomes Queen of France. But Louis IX is a religious zealot who denies himself the love and companionship his wife craves. Can she borrow enough of her sister's boldness to grasp her chance for happiness in a forbidden love?Passionate, strong-willed, and stubborn, Eleanor becomes Queen of England. Henry III is a good man, but not a good king. Can Eleanor stop competing with her sister and value what she has, or will she let it slip away?

The Sister Queens is historical fiction at its most compelling, and is an unforgettable first novel.


How do you determine the creator of history? Is it just one person or several? Are they male? Female? Both? Who are they?

These were some of the questions I had in the back of my mind when I was reading The Sister Queens by Sophie Perinot.

The Sister Queens follows the stories of Marguerite, Queen of France, and Eleanor, Queen of England in the 1200s. What is interesting about the two women is that, not only were they both married to powerful kings, but they were also sisters who would continue a constant bond and correspondence with one another for their entire lives, despite the very different direction those lives would go in.

I had never actually heard of Eleanor or Marguerite, or their other two sisters who would also become queens in their own right. However their story intrigued me. Eleanor and Marguerite were queens to warring kings who, at some points in their lives, resented one another. Despite this, the two sisters worked together to bring peace between their two countries as they attempted to hold their own in a world ruled by men.

Overall I found the book to be interesting to read and the voices of the characters to be captivating. I found myself following the story and, due to my limited knowledge of the history behind the book, guessing at what would happen next.

Both sisters are portrayed as being strong, independent and intelligent women who learned how to achieve what they wanted despite being considered inferior by their contemporaries.

Perinot has really brought the dead back to life in her book and given them their own voices once again.

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