Tuesday, January 07, 2014

The Revolt of the Eaglets (1977)

The Revolt of the Eaglets. Jean Plaidy. 1977. 320 pages. [Source: Bought]

I have not read the first novel in Plaidy's Plantagenet series. The Revolt of the Eaglets is the second in the series. It opens with the King Henry II learning of the murder of Thomas Becket, and it ends with his own death, or, news of his death reaching his prisoner-wife Eleanor. The novel is focused on the strife between Henry and his family. Any "love" once felt for his wife, Eleanor, the mother of all his legitimate children, has vanished now that she's older and past her usefulness. The two live separate lives for a short time, but, he eventually holds her prisoner. HATE isn't too strong a word for how these two feel towards one another! It is also focused on "Young Henry" (the oldest son and heir), Richard, Geoffrey, and John. Henry II had a "brilliant" idea to have his heir crowned king. Having two crowned monarchs is a big, big mess. It does not inspire family harmony. The son has no actual power, authority, dominion, or independence. Richard is another son that comes into the story quite a bit. Oh the plotting and scheming that goes on...as his sons "turn" against their father and fight for what is "theirs" by right. Is it horrible for sons to turn against their fathers and lead armies? Of course. But the truth is it is hard to find good excuses for Henry II's bad behavior. Plaidy is very matter-of-fact about his weaknesses, mistakes, or sins.

What might be hardest for modern readers to understand is Henry's relationship with Alice. Richard and Alice were betrothed to each other as young children. She is a French princess. She leaves France to live in England at a young age. When the king first takes notice of his future daughter-in-law she is eleven or possibly twelve. It is lust pure and simple. The book presents the seduction (without graphic details, but what is there is CREEPY ENOUGH) very matter of fact without judgment or commentary. Alice believes this special but must keep it secret attention is marvelous. She expects to be made Queen one day. Alice and Henry's relationship continues throughout the book.

Readers get a glimpse of British history and French history. It isn't always a cozy, satisfying glimpse. But it was an interesting read with plenty of characters.

© 2014 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Post a Comment

I'm always happy to hear from you! To help fight spam, comment moderation has been set up for posts older than two days. Feel free to ask me questions or ask for recommendations!

Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

Unique Visitors and Google PR Rank

Free PageRank Checker

My Blog List

(Old) Challenge Participants

Becky's Hosting These Challenges

100 Books Project: Fill in the Gaps

Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

  © Blogger template Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP