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The Conquest

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4.04  ·  Rating Details ·  1,097 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
When a comet appears in the sky over England in 1066, Ailith, a young Saxon wife, feels sure that it can only bode well, in spite of her husband's fears. With a child on its way, the couple are prosperous and content. Yet, within a year, Ailith's joy turns to heartache as her husband and her child are taken from her and the conquering Normans advance.
Ailith's grief turns t
...more
Kindle Edition, 574 pages
Published (first published April 1st 1996)
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(showing 1-30)
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Misfit
Unputdownable! Is that a word? If not it should be, at least when describing this author's books. The Conquest is really two books in one, telling the story of two generations as it opens shortly before the Norman invasion of 1066. Saxon housewife Ailith loses her husband, brothers and new born child and attempts to take her own life, but is stopped by womanizing Norman knight Rolf de Brize. To avoid the romantic attentions of a London Goldsmith, Ailith accepts Rolf's offer to serve as chatelain ...more
Sharon Penman
Jul 17, 2009 Sharon Penman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is very well-written story of the conquest of England by the Normans in 1066, and the impact it has upon two families, one Saxon, one Norman. Like all of Elizabeth's novels, it is meticulously researched. It has two passionate love stories, a solid grounding in the politics of the era, and a vivid depiction of the Battle of Hastings. I would definitely recommend it.
Gary
Sep 21, 2016 Gary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beginning in 1065 and ending in 1088 , this book covers the Norman Conquest and its devastating effect on a young Saxon wife Ailith who befriends a Norman wine merchant's wife, Felice at a time when hostility is growing towards Normans in England
Ailith's two bothers are killed in the Battle of Hastings, her infant son dies and her husband is killed at William the Conqueror's coronation.
She tries to commit suicide but is stopped by Rold de Brize, a Norman merchant, and is taken to be paramour of
...more
Parvathy
Apr 28, 2012 Parvathy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Historical fiction has always been my cup of tea and THE CONQUEST by Elizabeth Chadwick is no different. It has all the elements that are sure to make a good historical novel and such vivid and accurate descriptions you can be sure that the author has done her homework before writing this book. I find it very difficult to imagine a era as old as 1066,let alone write about it and to write about such an era with such disarming accuracy is unnerving. Kudos!! to the author for delivering a nice dose ...more
Regan Walker
Poignant Tale of Two Loves Set Against the William’s Conquest of England

The story begins in 1065 (and continues through 1088), as Ailith, wife to Goldwin the Armorer, watches her younger teenage brothers serve the new English King Harold Godwinson as his bodyguards. Her husband makes them the Danish war axes, which they wield. But a storm is gathering as the Harald Hardrada, King of Norway and William, Duke of Normandy both seek to rule England. Rolf de Brize, a Norman horse breeder prepares his
...more
Krista Baetiong Tungol
The Conquest by Elizabeth Chadwick isn’t as riveting as her other novels and didn’t get me into a serious dose of book hangover and ‘fangirling’ as was the case with her William Marshal series (and which I consider a good thing because it only means that I enjoyed reading it), primarily because I’d expected her chief characters to be actual historical figures. Perhaps, Chadwick thought Duke William of Normandy wasn’t charming a personality to portray, the same way that King John wasn’t probably ...more
Allie
England & Normandy 1065-1088. I would consider The Conquest a historical romance but written just as well as her historical fiction. There are a few cameos of real historical figures (William the Conqueror, his sons and even someone I had to Wikipedia, Rodrigo Diaz de Bivar or "El Cid").

I loved the journey you are taken on in this book through England and Normandy. The book starts off with some real page turning events such as The Battle of Hastings and King Williams coronation. The MC Ailit
...more
MAP
The Conquest follows 2 generations of families in England and Normandy during the time of the Norman Conquest in 1066.

Unfortunately, this book suffers from predictability. Early on, you figure out who the main couple is, then it's easy to figure out basically what everyone else is going to have to do. Which means you spend the last 300 pages or so just waiting for it to happen.

I will give Chadwick credit though, she does a good job of creating interesting, compelling, relatable female character
...more
Julie
Mar 18, 2014 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recently, I've been enjoying reading about the Norman Conquest of England in the late 11th century. I've read other Elizabeth Chadwick historical novels and was excited to see she had written one about The Conquest. Unfortunately, it isn't about the Conquest. It takes place during Conquest times, but it is strictly a romance book. I almost gave it 2-stars because I find romance books trite and boring, but settled on 3 stars due to Chadwick's excellent writing. It's not her fault that I expected ...more
Denise
Jul 23, 2011 Denise rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
For me, a really good book is one that you can't wait to continue reading once you've started. Not so with this book. The plot meandered here and there, the characters were weak and the ending was predictable. I'm currently reading about the Anglo-Saxon period before and after the Battle of Hastings (1066) so I was very interested in reading this book but I felt disappointed afterwards. Every author will occasionally toss out a "not so great" book from time to time so I'll read another of this a ...more
Graceann
Nov 21, 2010 Graceann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have one bit of advice regarding reading Elizabeth Chadwick novels, especially in paperback. Do NOT read the back cover. Although I didn't realize it, most of the major plot points are given away in that tiny bit of description. It is a testament to Miss Chadwick's skill as a writer that I was still interested in how the story would unfold.

Ailith is happily married to an armourer in the days leading up to the Battle of Hastings. She is expecting a child, her brothers are huscarls to King Haro
...more
Joyce
Dec 16, 2013 Joyce rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was amazing. Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres to read. Elizabeth Chadwick was able to take me back to the Britain of 1066. I could visualize myself being there hearing the sounds of the people and smelling the food and the living conditions. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes Historical Fiction.
Rebecca
May 18, 2012 Rebecca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Elizabeth Chadwick never fails to impress. All the period details were great as usual, and this one was quite interesting as it told a multi-generational tale. I think it is probably one of my favourite of hers that I have read to date.
Terri
Before this book I had read Chadwick's, The Falcons of Montabard. I did not think much of it and swore off Chadwick novels. However, because I liked some of Chadwick's other books and because I had a couple here still unread, I forced myself to read another Chadwick, one that people had reviewed well, and I am glad that I did.
While The Conquest was NOT written in Chadwick's later, more sophisticated hand - and there were a couple of historical errors which is unlike her - the simplicity of the w
...more
Misfit
Unputdownable! Is that a word? If not it should be, at least when describing this author's books. The Conquest is really two books in one, telling the story of two generations as it opens shortly before the Norman invasion of 1066. Saxon housewife Ailith loses her husband, brothers and new born child and attempts to take her own life, but is stopped by womanizing Norman knight Rolf de Brize. To avoid the romantic attentions of a London Goldsmith, Ailith accepts Rolf's offer to serve as chatelain ...more
Josephine
Apr 09, 2012 Josephine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I first read this book in 1998 and I knew that I enjoyed it then because I had kept it stashed away in one of my boxes of 'too good to part with' books. On reading it again my opinion has not changed in the least. Although the book is 568 pages long there is no padding out and you never once feel the need to skip a page. The story is about two families, one Norman and one Saxon and how they become entwined through both marriage and business after the Norman Conquest. It is filled with exciting a ...more
Rusty
Using a background of medieval England in the time of William the Conqueror, Chadwick's writing makes you feel as if you live beside the characters. The story focuses on Ailith, a Saxon wife who is widowed after her husband attends William's coronation. Her two beloved brothers have already been slain defending their country and King Harold. The story begins with Rolf de Brize, whose role in war leaves Ailith, a Saxon wife, without her child, her husband, her home and her brothers. Rolf falls in ...more
Julia
Aug 15, 2015 Julia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
I picked up this book because I am interested in English history of the period and wanted to learn more about it. The book is called "Conquest" but what does it actually tell us about the Conquest? Practically nothing. Ms. Chadwick only uses this huge historical event as means to bring Rolf de Brise from Normandy to England where he will meet Ailith and love will blossom. Once they meet, it becomes a romance novel in its purest form, and a very predictable one, at that.

Yes, the book describes th
...more
Sarah
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Kristen
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Susana
Aug 16, 2014 Susana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An incredible book, highly addictive, very recommendable. Historical fiction intriguing and enchanting. I was looking forward to reading more about William The Conqueror, never expected to find this jewel; related to the history of the conquest indirectly it affects its characters and the events in the plot. The story of Rolf and Ailith, leaves central stage to Julitta and Benedict, hoping against hope, seeing everything evolve in a thrilling, schilling manner, death lurks on the characters and ...more
Gary
Dec 22, 2014 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beginning in 1065 and ending in 1088 , this book covers the Norman Conquest and its devastating effect on a young Saxon wife Ailith who befriends a Norman wine merchant's wife, Felice at a time when hostility is growing towards Normans in England
Ailith's two bothers are killed in the Battle of Hastings, her infant son dies and her husband is killed at William the Conqueror's coronation.
She tries to commit suicide but is stopped by Rold de Brize, a Norman merchant, and is taken to be paramour of
...more
Allison G
Feb 03, 2013 Allison G rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I usually read historical fiction set in Scotland in the 18th century but decided to try a different time period and only slightly different part of the world. This novel treats the time period of William the Conqueror who came to power in England in 1066 and goes all the way through his death and the time of his sons' rule of England and Normandy and ends in 1088. A whole heck of a lot happens in this book! - too much to put in my review. But suffice it to say that Chadwick is a very good story ...more
Nisareen
Aug 06, 2012 Nisareen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Conquest opens shortly before the Battle of Hastings in 1066. In the aftermath, Saxon housewife Ailith loses her husband, brothers and new born child and attempts to take her own life, but is stopped by womanizing Norman knight Rolf de Brize. Feeling strangely responsible for the woman whose life he has saved, the normally unreliable Rolf installs Ailith as chatelaine of Ulverton, his English estate. Despite his wife and daughter in France, he and Ailith eventually fall in love and have a da ...more
Kim
Jul 10, 2009 Kim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: medieval-fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erin
Feb 02, 2014 Erin rated it really liked it
In "The Conquest" Elizabeth Chadwick delivers the best kind of historical fiction surrounding events in Normandy and England from 1065-1086. The book, split into two parts, focuses first on the Anglo-Saxon Ailith and the Norman womanizer, Rolf de Brize. The second part focuses on the couple's daughter Jullitta and her childhood love Benedict. While at times the romance goes over board into serious soap opera territory, the meat of the book is sustained by the portrait of 11th century England and ...more
Jane
Aug 04, 2011 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Helen
Nov 22, 2012 Helen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fabulous! 'The Conquest' is in two parts - first it tells the story of Ailith and then it's the turn of her daughter Julitta. It opens in 1065 so we know what's coming! The Norman Conquest provides a fascinating backdrop to the lives of these two remarkable women who take us on a journey of twists and turns and highs and lows. A quotation on the cover from 'The Times', "An author who makes history come gloriously alive" sums up Elizabeth Chadwick perfectly. The world of 1000 years ago is depicte ...more
Catherine
Feb 09, 2012 Catherine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookcrossing
So-so historical novel of the annoying sort where there are two distinct batches of people linked by family ties: the initial heroine dies half-way through and the attention shifts to the next generation. So not a single story, but not enough generations for it to count as a saga. It's pretty gory in places: is it a rule in historical fiction that the further back one goes the more bloodshed there has to be? There is the odd clunky intrusion of historical detail, but most of the book manages to ...more
Rowena
Oct 02, 2013 Rowena rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked the characters and the setting, it was very rich in detail and felt realistic. It was the story itself that left me feeling unsatisfied. The cross-over from Ailith to her daughter left me a bit cold, and the final ending felt like a shrug; no emotional climax at all. I kept reading because I wanted that crescendo for such vibrant characters, but the author seemed to savour the tragedies and gloss over the happiness.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 09, 2015 05:03PM  
  • Within the Fetterlock
  • I Am the Chosen King (Saxon #1)
  • The Reckoning  (Welsh Princes, #3)
  • I Serve: A Novel of the Black Prince
  • Roselynde (The Roselynde Chronicles, #1)
  • The Seventh Son
  • The Founding (The Morland Dynasty, #1)
  • The Revolt of the Eaglets (Plantagenet Saga, #2)
  • The Secret Eleanor
  • The Brothers of Gwynedd (Brothers of Gwynedd #1-4)
  • Gildenford (Norman Quartet, #1)
  • Rivals for the Crown (Highland, #2)
  • Treason
  • The Queen of Last Hopes: The Story of Margaret of Anjou
  • Harlot Queen
  • The White Boar (Lovell Duo, #1)
  • The Conqueror
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Best selling historical novelist Elizabeth Chadwick won a Betty Trask Award for her first novel The Wild Hunt. She has been shortlisted for the UK's mainstream Best Romantic Novel of the Year Award 4 times and longlisted twice. Her novel The Scarlet Lion about the great William Marshal and his wife Isabelle de Clare, has been selected by Richard Lee, founder of the Historical Novel Society as one ...more
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