Shari Larsen's Reviews > Captive Queen: A Novel of Eleanor of Aquitaine

Captive Queen by Alison Weir
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Jun 12, 11

Read from May 31 to June 11, 2011 — I own a copy

This is the fictionalized account of Eleanor of Aquitaine (1122-1204), who was a Queen of a France and when she married King Henry II when she was nearing her 30's, Queen of England. This novel tells the story of their 37 year marriage; which was kind of unusual at that time because they married for love, not only for power. Back in those days, royal marriages were mostly deals made to secure thrones or kingdoms.

But what began with love quickly turned into a downward spiral of power struggles, betrayals, bitter rivalries, and sons that ended up fighting against each other. They loved and hated each other at the same time. This book explores the reasons both of them had for doing what they did.

Eleanor was a powerful woman for that time, before she married Henry, her lands comprised what is half of now France, making her the greatest heiress in Europe at that time. It was with Henry that they began the Plantaganet line, from whence Henry VIII is descended from.She lived to be 82 years old, which is quite remarkable for that time. She had 11 children and sadly, only 2 outlived her.

I really enjoyed this book, and despite the fact that her behavior was not always morally correct, I couldn't help but like her. She was a strong woman who in the end, just wanted what was fair and right for her children. I think had she been alive in more modern times, she would have been a crusader for women's rights.
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