Monday, October 14, 2019

The Sunne in Splendour

The Sunne in Splendour. Sharon Kay Penman. 1982. 936 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Richard did not become frightened until darkness began to settle over the woods.

Premise/plot: The Sunne in Splendour is an historical novel by Sharon Kay Penman. The central character is Richard, the “last born son of the Duke of York,” the man who would become the last Plantagenet king, Richard III. Does the name make you want to boo and hiss?! Or perhaps does it send you on a tirade about how he was slandered by those evil Tudors and treated unfairly?! The book opens when he is just a child (1459), before all the drama really gets started between Yorkists and Lancastrians. Or perhaps I should add that all the drama that came before was “normal” to the young boy. The novel is divided into sections. It has its ups and downs—moments of grandness or splendor, moments of incredible heartbreak and sadness. It tells an epic story, a slice of English history.

My thoughts: I have been meaning to reread this book for years. I love, love, love Richard III. I am Team Richard all the way. I do not believe he murdered his nephews, the princes in the tower. I boo,hiss Henry VII. I do. I can’t remember when I first became interested in this time period; but it’s something that I have been reading about for quite a while now. I still haven’t made up my mind if this is my absolute favorite on the subject or if that would be Josephine Tey’s Daughter of Time. I have probably reread that one more because it is much shorter!!!

I love the relationship between Richard and Anne in this book. I hate the ending—of course how could it end any differently then it does?! Richard III does not survive the battle. There is no happy ending for any one with a drop of royal blood that could challenge or match Henry Tudor’s claim

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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