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Garland of Straw (Roundheads and Cavaliers #2)

4.29  ·  Rating Details ·  79 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
By June 1647 England is still in a state of near-chaos. From endless conflicting factions, a tidal wave of radical new ideas threatens to drown the order of generations while the King plays both ends against the middle in a risky game of his own.

Venetia Clifford's days are divided between her secret activities on behalf of the Royalist cause and the struggle to keep Ford
Kindle Edition, 631 pages
Published November 29th 2013 by Stella Riley (first published January 1st 1993)
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Spanning the duration of round two of the English Civil War, this second volume in the series deals with the Cliffords, one of the three protagonist families—one Parliamentarian and two Royalist—that drive the overarching plot in Riley's saga.

The de facto head of the family is Venetia Clifford, a commanding former lady-in-waiting to the Queen whom the deaths in battle of her father and eldest brother and the exile of her second brother, not to mention her mother's weak spirits and the young age
Garland of Straw is a wonderfully written and very skilful blend of history and fiction which has, at its core, a tumultuous romance between opposites. In the highly unsettled period which followed the imprisonment of Charles I by Parliament in 1646, Venetia Clifford, a staunch supporter of King Charles, and Gabriel Brandon, a Colonel in the New Model Army, are forced to marry under the terms of a will which could otherwise deprive both of them of their homes.

When we met the beautiful and viva
Was so very happy to see Stella Riley's books made available for kindle. At one time a print copy of this very fine historical romance was as rare as hens teeth.

A tumultuous and passionate romance set against the backdrop of the English Civil War. Gabriel and Venetia are a well suited couple, both loyal to a fault, determined and strong willed, forced by circumstances into a marriage neither one desires.

The characters in this very strong and detailed historical romance step off the page from the
Dec 12, 2009 Misfit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's 1647 when the novel begins, England's *first* Civil War is over, and Robert Brandon’s will bypasses his legitimate son Ellis in favor of a previously unknown illegitimate son Gabriel Brandon - an officer in Cromwell's New Model Army. Royalist Venetia Clifford must wed Gabriel in order to save her family's lands (don't ask me to explain its way too complicated) and is none too happy as she'd always planned on marrying Ellis. Neither are thrilled at the match and things get off to a frosty ...more
Nov 30, 2013 An1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a review of the 2013 Kindle edition

I am not a "professional" blogger and write very few reviews. However, I am so happy that Stella Riley's books are now easily available again and hopeful that new ones will follow, that I feel the need to add my five-penneth-worth of comment on one of my favourite historical-fiction books.

A very much needed and welcome re-release of a very under-rated and seriously good historical novel. It is still a very good book and well worth reading. A considerabl
Paula Moss
Feb 23, 2014 Paula Moss rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. Stella Riley has a real talent for bringing her characters to life. Other have already revised the plot so all I will say is that the personal troubles of Gabriel and Venetia are entwined beautifully with the rambling events if the civil war. The book is well paced and there is a wonderful ebb and flow to events that's keeps you hooked right to the end.
This is great warmth in this story and I particularly love the way that Miss Riley weaves in characters from her prev
4.5 wonderful stars. Many others have already described the story of Gabriel and Venetia much better than I can. However, I would just add that this is yet another example of Stella Riley's wonderful way of weaving history into a historical romance. I also loved the glimpses of past characters such as Kate & Luciano from The Black Madonna (Civil War, #1) by Stella Riley and a more prevalent presence of Eden from that same book. Also, it was nice to catch up with Justin and Abby from A Splendid Defiance by Stella Riley which is also from this time period but Stella does no ...more
May 18, 2016 Andrea rated it really liked it
loved the lead up to the ending, which was predictable but very fun, i stayed up an extra two hours to finish it, and lord knows i love my sleep... again, like the first book in this series, the historical part is confusing and i'm not familiar with it at all except for this series, so it's interesting, but sometimes the convoluted-ness gets in the way of the purely pleasurable character development and action... although if it weren't in such a framework it might not be as good, so who knows, ...more
Michelle Dee
Venetia Clifford was the only thing that prevented this book from being a 5 Star read. She was too stubborn for too long. More detailed review to come.
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Stella Riley trained as a teacher in London and now lives in Kent, England. She enjoys amateur dramatics, salsa,belly-dancing, reading and travel.
After a break in her writing career, she has now published her back-catalogue [or as much of it as she intends to re-release!] as e-books.
The Marigold Chain, The Parfit Knight, The Mesalliance, A Splendid Defiance, The Black Madonna, Garland of Straw
More about Stella Riley...

Other Books in the Series

Roundheads and Cavaliers (4 books)
  • The Black Madonna (Roundheads and Cavaliers, #1)
  • The King's Falcon (Roundheads and Cavaliers, #3)
  • Lords of Misrule (Roundheads and Cavaliers, #4)

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