The Marsh King's Daughter
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The Marsh King's Daughter

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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  869 ratings  ·  63 reviews
From the author of 'The Champion' and 'Shields of Pride', this novel is set in England during the closing days of the reign of King John. Injured fighting King John's troops, Nicholas de Caen is nursed back to health by Miriel of Wisbech.
Paperback, 408 pages
Published November 2nd 2006 by Time Warner (first published July 1st 1999)
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Misfit
Born out of wedlock, Miriel Weaver adored her grandfather, a master weaver of fine wool. Her step-father takes over the weaving business upon her grandfather's death and Miriel rebels against him once to often and is packed off to a convent, although her rebellious nature continues and she doesn't exactly get along with life with the nuns either. Nicholas de Caen was a prisoner of King John until the baggage train is lost when the tide overtakes it as they are crossing the marsh. Nicholas reache...more
Ana T.
It seems with every new Elizabeth Chadwick book I read I become more of a fangirl of her work. Like in previous books what really draws me in are the characters she creates and their complexity. How they become real to us.

Unlike other books this story does not deal with the nobility. It deals with the common people, traders and particularly weavers, and I really enjoyed knowing something about that trade.

Elizabeth Chadwick beautifully combines history and fiction. In this case she starts out wit...more
Tara Chevrestt
This is my first Chadwick novel and I am impressed enough that I am going to read more. Whereas it is not the best book I have ever read, I thoroughly enjoyed it and its heroine, Miriel. In the novel's beginning, Miriel is a young girl whose stepfather is determined to be rid of her. After almost burning down the house, she is sent to a convent. While Miriel is rebelling against the nuns, a man named Nicholas is escaping the current King John's baggage train in which he was being held prisoner....more
Kate Forsyth
I’ve wanted to read a book by Elizabeth Chadwick for a while – a lot of my Goodreads friends rave about her work – and so I finally bought one to read. I chose this book because of the title – it’s the name of a Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale that I am actually thinking of rewriting one day. The title has little to do with the book, however, except that the heroine, Miriel, is the granddaughter of a rich weaver who lives near the marshes.

The book is set in 1216, one of my favourite periods...more
Terri
I am not entirely sure what my feelings are about this book......did I enjoy it, didn't I enjoy it?? It's a tough one for me to review. I may have to say that, yeah, I kinda did enjoy it, in places, though in other places, nahh, I kinda didn't really enjoy it.
A true mixed review it would seem.
Let me expound.
It was very well described and it was written nicely, but the female character was boring (a flaw I find in Chadwick books that I have outlined many times in my other Chadwick reviews).
By a...more
Amy
Well done! Another sensational book from Elizabeth Chadwick!! Like another reviewer of this book, I too had to stay up way past my bedtime to finish this – too hard to put down!

In my last review for The French Revolution series by Jean Plaidy I mentioned that I just didn’t feel the emotional connection with the characters, but not so with The Marsh King’s Daughter! The heroine, Miriel, is a woman after my own heart. She is a strong, intelligent and passionate woman who fights for what she wants...more
Graham
This was my first Elizabeth Chadwick read - and rest assured it certainly won't be my last.

I sat down to enjoy a hopefully enthralling historical romance and that's exactly what I got - once the first third of the book was out of the way. The early passages took me a while to get into, and I found the central characters to be rather selfish and unlikeable in their actions.

Then comes the introduction of a central villain and the story really takes off, never running out of speed until the fitting...more
Susan
Oh. My. Goodness – how good is this book?!

From the onset of the opening conflict I was gripped and full of empathy for Miriel, the heroine of the story. The introduction of the prospective hero, Nicholas, had me rooting for the pair of them and there was never any doubt in my mind that they belonged together. However, from their initial meeting their respective lives take very different courses and I was enthralled as events unfolded especially as I had no idea where they would lead.

Miriel is f...more
Tracy
A nice "fluff" read, though sometimes in danger of being little more than romance novel masquerading as historical fiction. There's an awful lot of sex involved, especially in the first half of the book. This is all well and good, but much of it is less-than-pleasant. And the romantic love at the core of the story suffers somewhat from the all-too-common lack of substance that leaves the reader wondering what, other than lust, it is really based on. What is somewhat odd is that there are several...more
Susan
Okay, I'm too liberal with stars. A book has to be pretty crap to get two stars or less. I mean, if I can finish it and not cry over the waste of my life, then it gets at least three.

BUT I think this book is a true three. My Plan II/English/Phi Betta Kappa-self is not ashamed of my love of the most poorly-written, over-hyped series (Twilight, Sookie Stackhouse) nor will I deny my love of the historical fiction which flirts with that section 8 housing of literature known as "romance."

Books set in...more
Charlotte
What's not to love? Perfect time period 1216. Characters are so real you feel like you know them all your life. You really want to see Robert Willoughby go down. You love Nicholas because he is pure of heart and reason. Miriel brings you on a roller coaster ride. You feel her sense of wanting to be free from her stepfather and her mother and the convent where she does not belong. You understand her decisions to marry a much older man. Who wouldn't make such a move given her circumstances? What I...more
Nisareen
Aug 06, 2012 Nisareen rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Nisareen by: Deborah O'Regan
In The Marsh King's Daughter, Chadwick takes a departure from her usual stories about royalty and nobility and brings the real people of the era to life - from wool traders to thieves, pirates and cut-throats. Set in 1216 during the last days of King John's reign, the book opens with the loss of King John's treasure while crossing the Wash, the large bay that separates East Anglia from Lincolnshire.

When Miriel Weaver is forced into a convent by her violent stepfather, she struggles to adapt to...more
Sarah Gruwell
Another environment lush, character vivid, and story intense work from Elizabeth Chadwick! Not only does this author spin a good yarn, but she transports her readers to another world with problems, dilemmas, and battles all its own, and yet a world that is very much like our own as well. History comes alive in her hands, and that's one of the main reasons I keep coming back to her, again and again.

I loved how the author concentrated on the middle class of medieval society in this work, not the l...more
Ksenia
I honestly can’t remember how I came upon this author’s work but the first book I read by her was Daughters of the Grail, which was a fascinating story about the Cathars. So most likley I probably found it soon after I read Labyrinth by Kate Mosse which also dealt with the Cathars and I wanted to know more. After I read Daughters of the Grail, I quickly ordered a few more books by Elizabeth Chadwick from the Book Depository. This is the second book I’ve read of hers and it was another great read...more
Jacey
Another excellent Chadwick. This time the main characters are entirely invented though some of the minor characters are actual historical figures. The main plot-bunny is that intriguing question... what did happen to King John's royal regalia? Was it really lost in the Wash?

When Miriel Weaver is forced into a convent by her violent stepfather, she sees the opportunity to escape when nursing the wanted rebel Nicholas de Caen back to health. It doesn't all quite go to plan, but Miriel does get awa...more
Kathy
In the fall of 1216, following a stalemate in his battles against the barons and shortly before he died, King John was returning west. Along the way, he is said to have lost a significant part of his baggage train while crossing a tidal estuary. The losses included, according to legend, the Crown Jewels.

The Marsh King's Daughter tells the fictional story of two people -- Miriel Weaver and Nicholas de Caen -- and how the finding of some of this treasure impacts their lives, not always for the goo...more
Kevin Reekie
Dec 12, 2011 Kevin Reekie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kevin by: reekiekorky@aol.com
This is the second book I have read from this author. Absolutely outstanding storytelling that brings the characters and the period of history alive.
The book is set during and after the reign of King John 1216. It is the story of Miriel weaver, step-daughter to a successful weaving family and a a soldier serving with King John. Miriel is banished by her wicked step-father to a nunnery and whilst there she saves the live of a soldier Nicholas de Caen who was nearly killed in a royal procession cr...more
Jewel
3.5 stars

Miriel is sent to the convent by her stepfather, she is unhappy and thoughts of leaving are forever on her mind. Escape is made easy by Nicholas who she nurses back to live and then demands that he help her in payment.

Nicholas has secrets of his own and doesn't wish to have his plans affected by having to escort a runaway nun but he helps Miriel anyway and lives to regret it.

That's how the book begins, but a lot more happens to both of them as the years go by, and in the style of Chadwi...more
Sara Giacalone
I'm a little torn on this one. I love Elizabeth Chadwick's books and typically read them very fast as they are impossible to put down - and this one is no exception. So for pure readability, I have to give it a 4 star review. I wasn't as fond of the main character however, and found the plot to be a tad predictable and the characters a bit two dimensional. The fact that I couldn't put this book down despite its flaws makes it a keeper. I did like the fact that Elizabeth picked this particular mo...more
bookczuk
Good historical novel, with characters that actually grow and learn, make mistakes, and learn some more. Plus, I got to learn about a time in history I didn't know that much about, except from what was happening to royalty. Listened to this on audio in the car, and think I may seek this author out for further ear reads. The voice actor was grand, too.
Bonnie
Actually, I'd give it a 2 1/2. It wasn't quite good enough for a three. I've read two other books by Ms. Chadwick that I liked really well so I expected to like this one. I liked it, but not especially well. The story was interesting, but too long. Also, there was WAY too much explicit sex and I did a lot of skipping. Fortunately, most of the time skipping to the next track worked, but sometimes this activity lasted for more than one. This story was not as grounded in history as the two previous...more
Jenni
I registered a book at BookCrossing.com!
http://www.BookCrossing.com/journal/12673676
Michelle Carlson
This was a VERY slow read, but in the all I enjoyed reading it. The characters are well balanced, but the ending is a little flawed in my opinion.
Keilani Ludlow
It had interesting possibilities, but just didn't carry through. Part of the problem for me was the crass descriptions etc. I don't need the details when the guy pees, when the wife is enduring her husband's sexual attentions and so on. It's not written to be deliberately lascivious, it is somewhat vulgar in the manner that time period was vulgar, but it's just not something I like. It leaves me wanting to wash my hands. Also, the plot just kept going and going and they marry the wrong people an...more
Sibylla Matilde
Had a nasty headache yesterday, so I slept a great deal of the day away...which meant I couldn't sleep last night. Probably a good thing, because I couldn't put this book down. It grabbed me right at the beginning, and I pretty much ignored every responsibility I have to see how it would end. It was SOOOOOOO heartbreaking and sad. There were parts that twisted my stomach into knots and made me feel ill. I felt seriously hung over when I finished it, and, even with the HEA, I think this was one o...more
Helen
Awwwwww, I loved this!! Such a romantic, passionate tale!! Unusually for an Elizabeth Chadwick, it doesn't feature royalty or nobility (although the famous loss of King John's treasures in the Wash plays an important part). The characters occupy a lower rung of the ladder namely the merchant classes. The feisty heroine is Miriel, a very reluctant novice nun who runs away from the convent and finds success in the weaving world but suffers heartbreak and trials and tribulations before finding happ...more
Angelyn Schmid
I think this author does better the less she relies upon real characters of the time period. The mystery of King John's missing treasure is a fairly safe venue to base a work of fiction and therefore I enjoyed it much more than Lords of the White Castle.

The dialogue in this book is well-crafted. It is easy to slip into the thirteenth century with Chadwick's mastery of the time period. For those who love early medieval novels, this one will satisfy.
Sharon A.
I liked it, and will read more by the author. The only thing I couldn't figure out was the meaning of the title. The heroine was the illegitimate daughter of a traveling troubadour, and the stepdaughter of a wool merchant. Obviously the marshes were linked to the story through the setting of the convent, and the opening scene with the loss of the King's treasure.

But Marsh King's Daughter? I didn't get it.

Oh well.
Mandy
Focusing on the intersecting lives of medieval lovers Miriel Weaver and Nicholas de Caen, Chadwick weaves an intricate tapestry of intrigue, mystery, treasure, murder, love, and ingenuity, making for a full and absorbing tale.

Read the rest of my review here - http://mmmmandys-thoughts.blogspot.co...
Robin
Although, I am a huge fan of Elizabeth Chadwick, I was disappointed in this one. The female protagonist, in particular, I found rather one dimensional and at times a bit annoying. I can't say I would recommend it. However, the Marshall series by her is truly fabulous.
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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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“I know the difference between the confection of live as sung in a minstrel's tale and the sustaining bread of love in reality, he defended himself. Both are to be savoured in their own way.” 0 likes
“It came to him that life moved in circles like the ripples radiating from a stone cast into a pool. . . Now he was on the outer ring of the last ripple, journeying to fulfill the cycle. Or perhaps the cycle was already complete and he was about to cast another stone.” 0 likes
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