In this book, originally published after her bestselling debut with the Wideacre trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Philippa Gregory takes readers to Henry VIII's England, on a journey to the outer reaches of passion, where magic and female power meet.
Alys joins a nunnery to escape the poverty of her life on the moor with her foster mother, Morach, the local wise woman with whom she lives as an outcast, but she soon finds herself thrown back into the world when Henry VIII's wreckers destroy her sanctuary. Summoned to the castle as the old lord's scribe, she falls obsessively in love with his son Hugo, who is married to Catherine. Driven to desperation by her desire, she summons the most dangerous powers Morach has taught her, but soon the passionate triangle of Alys, Hugo, and Catherine begins to explode, launching them into uncharted sexual waters. The magic Alys has conjured now has a life of its own -- a life that is horrifyingly and disastrously out of control.
Is she a witch? Since heresy means the stake, and witchcraft the rope, Alys is in mortal danger, treading a perilous path between her faith and her own female power.
The author of the Wideacre trilogy offers another intense, absorbing tale, a grisly drama of passion and witchcraft in 16th-century England. Growing up as an ill-used apprentice to Morach, the much-feared wise woman of the moors, Alys finds respite by joining an order of Catholic nuns. When young Lord Hugo and his men burn the abbey to the ground during a drunken rampage, Alys is the only one to escape; she flees back to Morach, consumed with guilt at having abandoned her dying sisters. Summoned to minister to Lord Hugh, Hugo's father, Alys soon finds herself deeply involved in the treachery and intrigue surrounding the old man's attempts to have his son's marriage to the barren Lady Catherine annulled. Attracted to Hugo despite his murderous past, Alys begins to practice witchcraft in earnest to rid him of Catherine and become his wife. Her spells work all too well: Catherine's long-awaited pregnancy ends disastrously, and Hugo comes to love Alys, but in a sickly haze of lust that provides no basis for marriage. Alys soon finds herself so sunk in evil, so removed from God's love, that only a truly shocking gesture can bring about her salvation. Gregory adeptly manipulates hair-raising horror and mounting suspense, brilliantly evoking the period's turbulent atmosphere. Dou ble day Book Club alternate.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Showing 1-1 of the 1 most recent reviews
1 . Impossible to like the main character
Posted September 18, 2010 by Labrador , WaterlooThis Gregory book was disappointing. It was quite difficult to find any empathy with the selfish, clueless main character of the story. I usually like all of Gregory's novels, so it was unusual to me that there were no redeeming qualities to this character. The ending was so unrealistic, that it was unbelievable and the biggest disappointment of all. Overall, very frustrating reading.
May 25, 2008
Number of Print Pages*
Adobe DRM EPUB
* Number of eBook pages may differ. Click here for more information.