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Lady of the Roses

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  569 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
During her short time as a ward in Queen Marguerite's Lancastrian court, fifteen-year-old Isobel has had many suitors ask for her hand, but the spirited beauty is blind to all but Yorkist Sir John Neville. It is nothing short of a miracle when the Queen allows Isobel's marriage to the enemy, albeit at a hefty price. All around Isobel and John rages a lawless war. It is onl ...more
ebook, 416 pages
Published January 2nd 2008 by Berkley
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May 02, 2010 gia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's a time frame-- during the Wars of the Roses-- that doesn't see a lot of attention. I had read Worth's novel The King's Daughter before I learned about Lady of the Roses; the former takes place one generation after the latter.

That said, I think that The King's Daughter is a slightly better book. Lady of the Roses is primarily about a woman who is almost impossibly perfect-- beautiful, kind, clever, all that stuff --who winds up marrying for love, and then she sits at home and watches all sor
Ana T.
Oct 05, 2009 Ana T. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve been hearing lots of things about Sandra Worth and when the opportunity came to read this book I couldn’t let it pass. Especially as it is set during the Wars of the Roses which is a period in the history of England that I like to read about.

Lady of the Roses is about Isobel, a young heiress who grows up a ward of the crown – the crown being Queen Margaret of Lancaster – but falls in love with John Neville, a member of the House of York and brother of Warwick the Kingmaker. For a while the
Feb 04, 2010 Lauren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lady of the Roses is yet another novel set during the Wars of the Roses and the tumultuous reigns of Henry VI and Edward IV. I had previously read Sandra Worth's Richard III trilogy. It wasn't amazing, but was readable enough and decided to follow up with Rose of York.

Anyhow, Lady of the Roses was an interesting read for two reasons. First, it is from a different perspective from most other novels in this period than I have encountered. The main character is the the little known Isobel, wife of
Christine Zibas
Feb 08, 2016 Christine Zibas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Set amidst the War of the Roses in 1400s Britain, the historical novel, “Lady of the Roses” by Sandra Worth, focuses on the story of Lady Isobel Ingoldesthorpe. An orphan raised in a nunnery, Lady Ingoldesthorpe is given over to the British court (which will benefit from the price of her marriage). The country is under the leadership of Henry VI, but the country's beloved king is beset by madness and, instead, court and country are ruled by his French wife, Marguerite d’Anjou, whose motives and ...more
I'm a huge fan of historical fictions, and was curious to read about Isobel Ingoldesthorpe, who had married into the Neville family during the War of the Roses period.

I was....slightly disappointed at the interpretation of Isobel's life throughout the War of the Roses. While there are no evidence to suggest the type of person she may of been, this version of what she may have been was a little much. While marrying for love, is very sweet and almost unheard of during that time period, I didn't k
Jennifer Gallagher
I am more a lover of Elizabethan History and novels, but this one caught my eye. I'm not familiar with the Wars of the Roses, so reading this was very informative. Ms. Worth did a great job on her research and character development. Isobel was a real person and I like how her daughter is related, albeit distantly, to FDR and Churchill. The depiction of Isobel's day to day life was interesting, as was her perspective of all the political turmoil going on in the country. Also, her relationship wit ...more
Apr 28, 2014 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found that this book started like a romantic historical fiction, which I tend to avoid, preferring as much history as possible without too much lovey-dovey sympathizing.
I became pleasantly surprised once Isobel gets her wish to marry John as I found the story became more about what was happening at the time and how it affected their lives, and this I found much more entertaining. Worth does a wonderful job of filling in historical details beyond this point, in my eyes.

Written very clearly, yet
Mar 18, 2010 Abigail rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read this 'cause I'll be playing Queen Margaret in RICHARD III in July, and I want to start getting a hold on this time period. But this book bored me---the author seems to have a following, but I didn't really get drawn in to her story or characters. Oh well.
This is not the first book by Sandra Worth I have read. I was a little disappointed with the over-romantic portrayal of Richard III in 'The Rose of York' but decided to give her another chance to see how she would deal with the Lancastrian court. Unfortunately, I found it much worse.

This is also not the first time I have given up on a book. If I feel I am not enjoying a book, I stick it out for fifty pages to see if it gets any better. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. This was a time whe
May 13, 2012 Elaine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a deightful and emotional read. Set in the Tudor era, Isobelle falls in love with the gallant knight, John (Ok, that makes it sound rather like a fairytale!) The novel follows their lives together, their trials and tribulations-but what shines through is their undying love for one another-and their rather large family,their children, and extended family at large.

If I have any criticism, it would be to suggest that the two protagonists were rather stylised, and "perfect". Isobelle's patince
Wendy Dunn
Sep 02, 2012 Wendy Dunn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Silent words fell from my heart, and, bartering with the Fates, I sought a gift and made a promise. Lady of Roses.

Historical fiction author Sandra Worth is a modern day troubadour. Through her meticulously researched work, she sings the stories of kings and queens, knights and their ladies, bringing to the fore people of the past to speak to us today. In her latest lyrical novel, Worth recounts the story of Isobel Ingoldesthorpe, a ward of Marguerite of Anjou, and John Neville, the man Isobel lo
ZaBeth  Marsh
Sandra Worth has written a compelling tale of love and war in England in her Tudor novel, Lady of the Roses. The heroine, Isobel, is a passionate and headstrong girl who enters the playing field because of her land-rich inheritance. Ward of Queen Marguerite of Anjou, Isobel sees up close the pressure and madness that comes with the crown. Everyone at court has their own agenda and Kings and Queens must put aside their own desires in their bid to hold on to England. Everything and everyone is a p ...more
Rebecca Hill
Mar 11, 2013 Rebecca Hill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I first started this book, I wasnt sure that I was going to enjoy it. But as I got into the book deeper I had a greater appreciation for Lady Isobel.

As a young woman she was blinded by love for Sir John Neville, but knows that nothing can ever come of it, especially since they are different sides of the war, the Lancastrians and the Yorkists. Somehow Queen Marguerite de Anjou finally agrees to the match of Lady Isobel and Sir John.
Their love story is one of the greats, a true love of each
Jun 25, 2016 MrsRK rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Decent read, not exceptionally good. The author decided to believe Isobel and John made a love marriage, although there are no historical facts to back this up. Well, it's fiction, after all. Some of her prose is really good, but sometimes her descriptions of Isobel are a bit ridiculous--as when comparing her to a nymph... But if you don't have anything else to read, this is quite adequate.
Amanda Morris
Jun 26, 2016 Amanda Morris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm giving this book 4 stars because I did enjoy reading it, but 3.5 would probably be more appropriate. It's a fascinating time period and Isobel is in a good position to be witness to many facets of it. But her character is a little too perfect. Beloved by literally everyone, no flaws whatsoever, the perfect husband and perfect romance. It actually got a bit grating sometimes.

What the author did well was showing the no-win situation people with good intentions found themselves in during the Wa
Jun 07, 2010 Thalia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tudor, medieval
I quite liked this as it came across quite believable and seemingly well researched and depicted. The last parts of the "War of the Roses" (Pre-Richardian) are depicted here with Isobel, married into the Nevilles (ie Warwick) being the main character so it's told from her viewpoint. I think I liked The King's Daughter a bit better and actually I would recommend reading that one first if you're a newbie to this time period like I was. But back to this book. The writing was sound, the story was in ...more
Dec 09, 2008 April rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was painful to read. It was so depressing. I sat and cried when I was done with it. People have called it a love story, but I call it a depressing one.
Despite that, this book was well written and I have loved all of Sandra Worth's books! It was just so painfully depressing to me! I found myself thanking God that I live now instead of back then.
I wish I would have read this one before I read her three books on Richard III. This was a recap of a lot that was covered in the Richard books,
May 14, 2015 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Erin by: Goodreads
15th century England- Lady Isobel Ingoldsthorpe, a young ward of Queen Marguerite's Lancastrian court, has many men of the realm vying to win the beautiful young girl, but it is only Yorkist John Neville that turns her pretty little head. Their lives become intertwined with the events of the battle between Red and White.

I thought that the historical detail and the introduction of a little known figure such as Isobel was interesting. Yet, I wasn't so won over by the romance portion of the book
I really enjoyed reading this book. The story was interesting and read quickly.
Peggy Whyte
Mar 01, 2014 Peggy Whyte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We'll researched, but also quite romanticized. A good read.
Tasha Cleveland
I just love historical fiction
An enjoyable mix of history and love story, bringing to life John Neville and his wife Isobel. A bit too over the top at times in its description of their love, slightly cringe worthy in fact, but otherwise it flowed well. It's worth a read to learn more about John Neville, although the reader has to beware that there is little actual history here and more interpretation of events, and so there is much more fiction than perhaps you might find in other historical fiction books.
Sep 08, 2010 Chandra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lady of the Roses is set in late medieval England, during the Wars of the Roses, more specifically, the period leading up to the dynastic changes. The story is deftly crafted and meticulously researched. Most importantly, Worth takes great care not to stray from the historical record in her novels. This is a real page-turner which I give pride of place on the shelf next to my other favorite historical fiction authors!
Wendy Hamstra-smith
I love historical fiction-in particular about the English monarchy. I just started delving into the War of the Roses (Lancaster/York civil war) because I was so stuck on the Tudor period.

This book was good but not very meaty. It was mostly the love story between Lady Isobel and Sir John Neville (York camp). It didn't capture my interest as much as other books of this genre have.
Yes it's a romance. Yes Isobel and John are too good to be true. No it's not historically accurate. Yes some of the scenes are beyond ridiculous. But in the end I gave it five stars because, more so than most books written about this period, it really conveyed the anguish, despair, anxiety, and horror of the times. Well done.
Jul 19, 2014 Charis rated it really liked it
Well written, far more detailed than most historical fiction I have read. However, while the context is the War of the Roses, the story is primarily a love story. It is also clear where the author stands on York vs. Lancaster. Read with the understanding that a lot of liberties are taken!
Dec 10, 2009 Amanda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
Meh. The story follows Isobel from the time she is 15 to her 30s; however, there is little character development. She may have well remained 15 for the entire book. I didn't want to leave the book unfinished, but I couldn't wait to get to the last page so I could start something else.
Jan 06, 2010 Renae rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: adult readers
Worth is a wonderfully talented writer. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel and went back to the book store for more of her books. I am now a big fan of historical fiction and curious to learn more about the periods of history she writes about.
I really enjoyed it, even though it may be a bit too much "romance" for some people. It was interesting to get the story from the neville side. John would be someone I'd like to read about more in other books. I do enjoy a little romance once in a while!
Jan 17, 2009 Sharon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this. A little bit of a history lesson (probably a VERY little bit) but it made me interested in reading more about that particular period in history. Engaging story and characters, too.
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Sandra Worth is the author of six historical novels chronicling the demise of the Plantagenet dynasty in England and the rise of the Tudors. She is the winner of numerous awards and prizes, including three Reviewers Choice Awards. For more info, visit
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“More than any of us, she had written her own story; yet she could not wash it out with all her tears, return to her victims what she had torn from them, and by so doing, save herself...” 12 likes
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