Sharon Kay Penman

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Sharon Kay Penman

Goodreads Author


in New York, The United States



member since
July 2009

About this author

Penman received her bachelor's degree from the University of Texas at Austin, she majored in history, and also received a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Rutgers University School of Law, and later worked as a tax lawyer. Penman suffered from an eighteen month bout with mononucleosis.

The Sunne in Splendour, a novel about Richard III of England is one of the most popular books on the Historical Novel Society's list of best historical novels. In 1996, following the success of When Christ and His Saints Slept (which dealt with the Anarchy and the early career of King Henry II of England), Penman ventured into the historical whodunnit with four mysteries set in the court of Eleanor of Aquitaine during the reign of Richard I. The mysteries did n...more

On September 20th, 1187, Saladin began the siege of Jerusalem, which figures in Ridley Scott’s epic, Kingdom of Heaven. Most of you know I am something of a purist when it comes to historical films or novels, so you won’t be surprised by my verdict on this film. It is visually stunning, but historical fantasy. They got only two facts right about the real Balian d’Ibelin—his name and that he was... Read more of this blog post »
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Published on September 20, 2014 06:55 • 89 views
Average rating: 4.23 · 68,346 ratings · 4,895 reviews · 17 distinct works · Similar authors
The Sunne in Splendour
4.39 of 5 stars 4.39 avg rating — 12,753 ratings — published 1982 — 21 editions
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Here be Dragons (Welsh Prin...
4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 12,604 ratings — published 1985 — 16 editions
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When Christ and His Saints ...
4.27 of 5 stars 4.27 avg rating — 8,076 ratings — published 1994 — 13 editions
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Falls the Shadow  (Welsh Pr...
4.36 of 5 stars 4.36 avg rating — 5,246 ratings — published 1988 — 11 editions
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The Reckoning  (Welsh Princ...
4.42 of 5 stars 4.42 avg rating — 4,938 ratings — published 1991 — 11 editions
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Time and Chance (Henry II &...
4.27 of 5 stars 4.27 avg rating — 4,557 ratings — published 2002 — 11 editions
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Devil's Brood  (Henry II & ...
4.34 of 5 stars 4.34 avg rating — 3,851 ratings — published 2008 — 13 editions
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The Queen's Man
3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 3,787 ratings — published 1996 — 15 editions
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 3,065 ratings — published 2011 — 14 editions
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Cruel as the Grave
3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 1,964 ratings — published 1998 — 10 editions
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More books by Sharon Kay Penman…
Here be Dragons Falls the Shadow The Reckoning
Welsh Princes (3 books)
4.34405582130162 of 5 stars 4.34 avg rating — 22,787 ratings

When Christ and His Saints ... Time and Chance Devil's Brood Lionheart A King's Ransom
Plantagenets (5 books)
4.2494311999208625 of 5 stars 4.25 avg rating — 20,218 ratings

When Christ and His Saints ... Time and Chance Devil's Brood
Henry II & Eleanor of Aquitaine (3 books)
4.2835820895522385 of 5 stars 4.28 avg rating — 16,482 ratings

The Queen's Man Cruel as the Grave Dragon's Lair Prince of Darkness
Justin de Quincy (4 books)
3.8852711342647406 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 8,446 ratings

Lionheart A King's Ransom
Richard the Lionheart (2 books)
4.0987687366167025 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 3,736 ratings

More series by Sharon Kay Penman…

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Sharon's Recent Updates

"Probably not, Isis, since we have so little time. I will get to Hattin, though. "
"Wonderful, Loretta. In my opinion, it can be challenging to portray a mystic, but Mary pulled it off perfectly. "
"I was interested in Balian before Lionheart, although the research I did for that book confirmed my interest in Balian. He was the only one who seemed...more "
Sharon Kay Penman wrote a new blog post
On September 20th, 1187, Saladin began the siege of Jerusalem, which figures in Ridley Scott’s epic, Kingdom of Heaven. Most of you know I am somet... Read more of this blog post »
"Leila, Book Depository is a MUST-SEE website for book lovers. "
"They are still working on the cover, Isis, which is why there is no image. They are also working on some very eye-catching covers for my other e-books...more "
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Sharon Penman added Goodreads to her Facebook Timeline
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Sharon Penman voted for Death of Kings as Best Historical Fiction in the 2012 Goodreads Choice Awards.
Death of Kings by Bernard Cornwell
More of Sharon's books…
“I inhale hope with every breath I take.”
Sharon Kay Penman, When Christ and His Saints Slept
tags: hope

“We tend to forget at times that it is the little ones, the children, who do suffer the greatest hurt. If we cannot comprehend why certain sorrows are visited upon us, how on earth can they?”
Sharon Kay Penman, The Sunne in Splendour

“...A scar signifies past pain, a wound that did not heal as it ought. But it testifies, too, to survival...(Here be Dragons)”
Sharon Kay Penman



Topics Mentioning This Author

topics posts views last activity  
European Royalty: Here Be Dragons: Mar 15 - Apr 15 9 45 Mar 10, 2009 06:55PM  
Fantasy Book Club: What are you reading in March? 73 308 Mar 29, 2009 05:36PM  
European Royalty: Jun 1 - Jul 1: When Christ and His Saints Slept 15 49 Jun 18, 2009 03:10AM  
Historical Fictio...: * The Idiot's Guide to the Ultimate Reading List: Chapter 1, Historical Fiction 5 2174 Aug 03, 2009 08:14PM  
The Next Best Boo...: OFFICIAL SUMMER CHALLENGE 2009 6756 10544 Aug 31, 2009 10:23PM  
The Seasonal Read...: Geography Lessons 98 357 Oct 10, 2009 07:10PM  
European Royalty: Historical Fictions Recs - 14th Century? 14 155 Nov 01, 2009 07:56AM  
Chicks On Lit: Historical Fiction 57 215 Dec 12, 2009 11:11AM  
The Next Best Boo...: Tani's Goals for 2009 24 267 Jan 01, 2010 03:05PM  
European Royalty: Favorites 19 111 Jan 13, 2010 03:39AM  
25823 A History of Royals — 821 members — last activity Sep 02, 2014 08:05AM
A place to talk about all royals from every corner of the world and from all moments in history, fiction or non-fiction; real or imaginary. Discuss ev...more
21077 All Things Medieval — 425 members — last activity Sep 17, 2014 12:37PM
where people can talk about anything and everything Medieval from known historical figures to life and times of the period to favorite authors of the...more
12605 Richard III — 439 members — last activity Sep 01, 2014 05:40PM
A group for those goodreads members and Ricardians (or not!) who would like to discuss all things Richard III.
25x33 Q&A with Sharon Kay — 53 members — last activity Oct 14, 2009 08:57AM
Hi, everyone. I have just joined Goodreads, which is a way cool website, as my nephew would say. I wanted to spread the word that Devil's Brood,the fi...more
22454 Historical Fictionistas — 6633 members — last activity 5 minutes ago
Welcome to Historical Fictionistas! We want to experience all different kinds of HF with all different kinds of people. The more diverse, the better....more
13170 The Plantagenets — 324 members — last activity Sep 18, 2014 04:15PM
This is a group for those who enjoy reading nonfiction and fiction about one of England's most fascinating dynasties. Discuss the Plantagenet kings, t...more
2196 European Royalty — 1496 members — last activity Sep 19, 2014 11:50AM
This is a group for anyone who enjoys fiction and non-fiction books about European royalty and history in general. We have a wide variety of discussio...more
25350 THE JAMES MASON COMMUNITY BOOK CLUB — 7137 members — last activity 9 hours, 20 min ago
ALL GENRE COMMUNITY OF BOOK LOVERS-Perfect for those interested in good books of any genre, film and lively discussion!-(300 PLUS DISCUSSION TOPICS)fr...more
More of Sharon’s groups…
Comments (showing 1-8 of 8)    post a comment »
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Rosemary Sharon, thanks so much for contacting me. We share UT Austin as well as a love of historical fiction. Your books sound wonderful!

Sara W Thank you so much for the friend request! I absolutely LOVE your books (as does everyone else in the European Royalty group)!

message 3: by Isis (last edited Aug 13, 2011 01:03PM)

Isis Happy Birthday, Sharon! Hope you've been having a good one.

(It's Beth, by the way, I've been tinkering with my profile today.)

Brenna Sharon, I just finished Watermark by Vanitha Sankaran. Bloody Brillant!! Thank you for the recommendation!

Sharon Penman Brenna wrote: "Sharon, I just finished Watermark by Vanitha Sankaran. Bloody Brillant!! Thank you for the recommendation!"

I'm glad you liked it, Brenna. It grabbed me from that first amazing birth scene. Sharon

Sharon Penman Kimberly wrote: "Thank you for adding me Sharon!"

HI, Kimberly. I spend more time on Facebook because I have never figured out how to navigate Goodreads. So if you're on Facebook, too, do friend me. Sharon

message 7: by Anita

Anita Elder Hi Sharon. We've exchanged email several times in the past. Looking forward to reading you newest book (after I finish The Sunne in Splendour for the third all-time favorite book!).

message 8: by Anita

Anita Elder Sharon,
I've wanted to see a movie version of The Sunne in Splendour for a very long time! Here's my suggestions for the cast:
Edward IV - Chris Hemsworth
Richard III - Dominic Cooper
Elizabeth Woodville - Lena Headey
Warwick - Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
Cecily Neville - Helen Mirren
Margaret of Anjou - Fanny Ardant

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