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In Defense of the Queen

(Susanna Horenbout and John Parker #3)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  212 ratings  ·  33 reviews
An artist never betrays her patron . . . especially one of the world's most powerful kings.

Susanna Horenbout has learned this lesson from the cradle. But when she receives a letter from her father telling her to do just that, she faces a dilemma. Betray Henry VIII, or carry out the request of her father’s employer, Margaret of Austria, and pass secret information to Henry’
ebook, 355 pages
Published August 1st 2013 by Michelle Diener
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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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Cora Tea Party Princess
A fast paced historical mystery with a nice dollop of international espionage and intrigue. A strange mix but it worked quite well.

This book works on its own as a standalone well enough, despite actually being part of a series. There was little to no explanation of what happened in previous books, with a presumption that any readers of this one were already invested in the series, but that didn't matter to me (and I didn't even notice) until a little over half way where motives became difficult
3.5 stars

This was a tightly-plotted and quick-moving mystery set in the reign of Henry VIII and is the third in Ms Diener's series featuring John Parker and Susanna Horenbout. Parker and Susanna met in In a Treacherous Court when she was sent to England from Flanders to work as a court painter.

By the end of that story, the pair were lovers and had become betrothed. At the beginning of this book, they have yet to marry, although they seem to be living together fairly openly.

Both Parker and Susa
Jun 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I've already mentioned how much I enjoy reading Michelle Diener's books. Last year her The Emperor's Conspiracy made my top books of 2012, and this year I managed to read the first three books in her Susanna Horenbout & John Parker series, and absolutely adored it.

I would say she definitely writes historical fiction with a flair, and if you think this genre is boring you might read her and reconsider. Her books are short, action-driven, well-researched and what I enjoy most of all, - have very s
Blodeuedd Finland
Sometimes a series just keep on getting better and this one certainly did. This book never let go of me, the suspense was always there. Susanna was truly in trouble.

This is the third book in the series about Susanna and Parker. Still not married ;) but it's coming. There is a message for the queen, but the question is deliver it or not? Treason? And then there again is a plot that needs to be uncovered and dangers for both of them. There is lots of running, spying and hiding.

Now why was this boo
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so glad to receive In Defense of the Queen ARC that I couldn’t wait to read it. And given how disappointing the books I’ve recently read have been, I could not have come up with a better book to read. I’ve read pretty much read all the books by Michelle Diener and I love her work. This series in particular is one I really enjoy so I was thrilled to see this one on Netgalley and even happier when my request was accepted.

I won’t go into the plot because it is connected to the past 2 books a
Audra (Unabridged Chick)
Jul 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I'm pretty much a die-hard Diener fan now -- she made me inhale (and love), three Tudor-era hist fics! After being blown away by Daughter of the Sky , her historical novel set in 19th century South Africa, I agreed to review this one despite my finickiness about Tudor historical novels.  I was lured by her appealing heroine, a painter at Henry VIII's court.

On a whim, I picked up the first two books in the series, In a Treacherous Court and Keeper of the King's Secrets, despite my enormous rev
Stephanie (Bookfever)
I received In Defense of the Queen for review through NetGalley and also a huge thanks to Michelle Diener to send me a link that approved it for me. She's always so kind to me for letting me review her books. Thank you, Michelle!

Defense of the Queen is quite different in many ways from the other two books in the Susanna Horenbout and John Parker series. And I mean that definitely not in a bad way because I loved this book as much as the other two in the series. Being the third book in this seri
Amy R
I loved In Defense of the Queen by Michelle Diener. Seriously. I think this has been my favorite book of the series so far. A lot of it was watching Parker struggle so much while his betrothed, Susanna, was imprisoned and he was helpless. The normally strong, calm, controlled Parker was out of sorts when he could not get Susanna freed easily. While Susanna didn't wish to be imprisoned she did what she always does - she stepped up and was strong for everyone else.

If you haven't read Michelle Dien
Carrie Slager
[Full disclosure: I was sent a free paperback copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

With the serious cliffhanger at the end of the second book I knew I immediately had to start In Defense of the Queen. I’m very invested in this series by this point so you can understand why I was a little anxious to find Susanna in a lot of trouble in this third installment.

As with the previous two books, I loved the characters. Susanna and John’s bond is stronger than ever partly because of all
Tara Chevrestt
First of all, I have not read the first two books, but the blurb (on netgalley) promised this book could stand alone. I began to follow Michelle Diener after reading her Daughter of the Sky. I'm very impressed with her writing and her "voice". I like her heroines too.

But I was confused while reading this book and I have to disagree with the blurb. It's best to read the first two. I don't feel this stood alone well and I think I would have enjoyed it a lot more had I known who everyone was. The b
Jenny Schwartz
"In Defense of the Queen" was the book I saved this year to read at Christmas. I've thoroughly enjoyed Michelle's first two Susanna Horenbout and John Parker books. I've even commented that her style reminds me of Georgette Heyer -- the seemingly effortless historical accuracy, clarity and characterisation. However, in this third book I think it's less a romance and more a thriller. All right, I can compromise on historical romantic suspense. Imagine Helen McInnes writing of Tudor England rather ...more
Jan 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks, own-it
I love the relationship between Susanna and Parker. They love one another, they trust one another and they are partnership. I like how Susanna tells Parker about the letter her brother brought immediately and they work out the best way to handle it together. I like how even though Parker is the Kings man and loyal his primary loyalty is to Susanna. I love Michelle's heroines - they are strong, smart, practical and likable and Susanna is no exception. However I often find that while her heroes ar ...more
Jul 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is Michelle diener best book yet! I fell in love with her writing/chracters in her first novel In a treacherous court and have not stopped reading her books since. In the defense of the queen grabs you from the page and doesn't let go. I love michelle's suspense filled historical novels. You experience every emotion of joy and pain right with along with the chracters. This novel continues the story of Susanna and Parker. I love their relationship/romance and how Michelle diener weaves in hi ...more
May 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A super gorgeous conclusion to the trilogy 💖 Five Taking-My-Breath-Away Stars 💎⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ This was a kind of beyond-words gorgeous finale. The only way to experience the author's talent as a superior story teller to its fullest, was to pick up the trilogy and lose yourself to its magic. To quote one of my Heroes 🙇🏽‍♀️: "You don't have to the my word for it." Michelle Diener definitely belongs with anyone's Top Ten Favorite Authors 💕Sharing one of my favorite scenes:

Susanna steppe
Emma Kerry
Aug 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a fan of historical fiction, I'm surprised that I haven't read Diener before. In Defense of the Queen is the third book in the Susanna HOrenbout and John Parker series, and I have already bought the first two to catch up.

Set during the reign of Henry VIII, a period I am particularly fascinated with, this book is clearly so well researched, I almost felt as though I was there with the characters. Unlike much historical fiction, this book is fast places and plot driven.

I cannot recommend this b
Mar 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great novel. The twists and turns in it have you on the edge of your seat as you read. I was very reluctant to put it down, wanting to know what happened next. I hope that there will be more adventures with Susanna and Parker
Very entertaining. I think the entertainment value had more to do with the non-stop active plot than the historical sources, but I ripped through this one nonetheless.
Too bad I googled Susanna Horenbout (view spoiler)
Anyways, as I don't see any more of these books on the bibliography list, I assume this is the conclusion to the series. It was certainly a fun ride.

Jun 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Susanna's brother arrives in London and within days she is lock in the Tower on accusations of treason. But prison might be safer than home since there is also an assassin hunting for her. Meanwhile John must race to clear her name and discover the true traitor.

Why I started this book: I needed to read the end of the series before I completely forgot the characters and first two books.

Why I finished it: Delightful, breezy book.
Mel (Daily Prophecy)
3.5 stars. Another good story about Susanna & Parker :D

I’m a fan of Michelle Diener’s series and when she emailed me that I was pre-approved on Netgalley, I had to read it. I wasn’t disappointed. This is yet another well-researched book filled with action, some mystery and many spies. I love it when it’s clear that the author took time to research their facts. It gives this book a realistic feeling.

Susanna is yet again in danger. Her brother Lucas brings
Venetia Green
Jul 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Artist Susanna Horenbout was almost certainly employed by Henry VIII as his illuminator. None of Susanna’s paintings have survived and very little is known of her. Intrigued by the success of a Flemish woman in a male-dominated profession and English court, Michelle Diener has crafted her a fictional context. In Defense of the Queen is Susanna’s third adventure, but easily stands alone.
Susanna’s life in London is interrupted by the arrival of her brother. Although pleased to see him, Susanna w
Nov 22, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series
Michelle Diener reigns supreme as a writer of fast paced historical mystery. Book #3 of the delightful series about real historical members of King Henry VIII's court began with In a Treacherous Court (Susanna Horenbout and John Parker, #1) by Michelle Diener and Keeper of the King but is perfect as a stand alone read. As Susanna and John deal with the recent arrival of her brother and the knowledge that a French assassin still lurks in the background to put an end to Susanna, the pair also find themselves racing against the clock to save little Henry Fitzroy from an assassination at ...more
Aug 21, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books
Treachery and treason in the court of King Henry VIII...

As an avid reader of historical fiction and a lover of the Tudor England time period, I was destined to enjoy this book. There were a few things I had to suspend but disbelief about (such as a favored female painter for Henry VIII), but overall I enjoyed it very much.

Susana Horenbout receives a secret and dangerous message to pass on to Queen Catherine. The message almost gets her killed as well as sent to the Tower for Treason by Cromwell.
Nidah (SleepDreamWrite)
Loved the two other books in the series.

Then when I saw there was a third book, I got liked super excited.

This was really good, but you know how when its been a while since you read the last book.

Then once the newest book comes out, you kind of remembered what happened and are like wait which character is this again?

While it was like with this, I could still follow the story well.

Love the historical intrigue, suspense as Susanna Parker and co are on yet another mystery adventure. Also love
Clare O'Beara
This is an involved story of politics and spies at the court of Henry VIII. Susanna is a portrait painter so not wealthy and she is to marry a young man in the royal household. Her brother brings a message from the Queen of Austria to Queen Katherine of England. Even possessing this message puts them all in danger, and they can't afford to be called traitors.

There is plenty of action and suspense, also good details about the city of London in that day. Those who want just a romance in historica
Liz V.
Jul 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once again, Michelle Diener draws a convincing portrait of Henry VIII's court, leaving one convinced that Henry and Wolsey deserved one another but, typically, manage to harm all around them.

From Goodreads.
Jul 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Exciting plot and relatable characters: Full review at Fresh Fiction.
Aug 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-read, to-review
My full review and interview with the author can be found here on my blog: ...more
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 15, 2015 11:26AM  

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Michelle Diener is a bestselling, award-winning author of historical fiction, science fiction and fantasy. Having worked in publishing and IT, she's now very happy crafting new worlds and interesting characters and wondering which part of the world she can travel to next.

Michelle was born in London, grew up in South Africa and currently lives in Australia with her husband and two children.

When she

Other books in the series

Susanna Horenbout and John Parker (3 books)
  • In a Treacherous Court (Susanna Horenbout and John Parker, #1)
  • Keeper of the King's Secrets  (Susanna Horenbout and John Parker, #2)

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