The Fool's Tale
Wales, 1198. A time of treachery, passion, and uncertainty. King Maelgwyn ap Cadwallon, known as Noble, struggles to protect his small kingdom from foes outside and inside his borders. Pressured into a marriage of political convenience, he takes as his bride the young, headstrong Isabel Mortimer, niece of his powerful English nemesis.
Through strength of character, Isabel w...more
What really m...more
The Fool's Tale is set in the late twelfth century, when Wales was still independent of English rule, but was divided into a collection of small realms. And all of them are squabbling with each other, ready to murder each other instead of trying...more
The story of a strange love triangle between a bride of political convenience, a Welsh king of good character, and his Fool--his best friend who lives in limbo, neither belonging nor an outsider to court, neither respected nor scorned, not wealthy n...more
It's set in Wales at the end of the 16th century, and I got very distracted by the Welsh names. There's a pronunciation list of people and places in the front of the book, and I found myself spending too much time looking up correct pronunciations rather than focusing on the story.
This was during a period when kings and other rulers frequently kept a "fool" to keep them entertained. It was interest...more
I wanted to love the book; it kept me reading all the way to the end (a testament to the writers ability), but the story and especially the ending, made me feel disappointed that I spent so much time with the book.
It's set oh, Robin Hoodish times. Late 1190s Wales. King Richard is on his Crusades and Prince John is on the English throne. He's only mentioned in this book, he doesn't actually have any speaking parts.
The novel centers around "Noble", the nickname of the King of a little Welsh "reeve" and his castle, Cymaron. Noble is everything you think you'd want your K...more
It's on the lighter side of historical fiction, by which I mean that I strongly suspect Galland did not go far enough or...more
But all that goes away fairly quickly. Truthfully, the hardest part to read was the Prologue. Getting through that was all it took for me to get sucked in.
I read this book in a week. No, read isn't the right word. I inhaled this book. It completely overtook me. I stayed up until 3 a.m. several nights in a row because I could NOT put it down...more
I loved the historical aspect (my favorite type of novel) but this book had a little bit of everything - mystery, romance, pathos *and* history. It's about a medieval Welsh queen's love affair with the king's best friend—his profane, hyperactive royal fool.Not a romance...more
Through strength of character, Isabel wins her husband's grudging respect, but finds the Welsh court backward and barbaric -- especially Noble's old...more
The author's distance...more
It's the story of the small Welsh kingdom. As the book opens, its King is murdered by the treacherous English baron Roger Mortimer. His son, the prince, is saved only because his friend Gwirion refuses to reveal his hiding place. Gwirion suffers torture as a result, and this act of loyalty cements the friendship forever. When Prince Maelgwyn, now called Noble, becomes king, th...more
Sometimes the darker endings make the story more cohesive, even if i...more
The author chose to set this novel in medieval Wales, thus giving all her characters names that made discussing...more