Marilyn's Reviews > Reign of Madness

Reign of Madness by Lynn Cullen
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's review
Aug 14, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: first-reads
Recommended for: Historical Romance lovers, History buffs, Book Clubs, Everyone

BY Lynn Cullen

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, New York
Copyright: Lynn Cullen 2011

How far would you go for your family? Is there any limit? That’s a question to ask while you read this fantastic historical novel. Lynn Cullen paints a realistic picture of her characters and the time period that the novel takes place in. Another good question is how far would you go for power and glory?

This is a novel about Spain during the 1400’s to the 1500’s. It is a story about Queen Isabelle and King Ferdinand. It is a story about their family, centering on their daughter, Juana of Castile who was the legal heir of Isabelle’s throne. Before I read this book, I didn’t know that Juana of Castile, also known as Juana the Mad, even existed. Of course, I knew about Queen Isabelle and King Ferdinand, as every North American child does. She gave the go head for Columbus to “sail the ocean blue.” She was the evil incarnate Queen who forced Jews to convert or leave Spain and caused the formation of the inquisition. I really did see her as a very evil woman. But now, after reading Reign of Madness, I see what drove her, religious fervor. So, I will give her a bit more credit. This novel does not focus on Columbus at all, but rather on the exploration of Cristobel Colon, whom Isabelle favored. But, Reign of Madness is more than history, it is a love story. It is about the love that Juana of Castile had for her family and the men in her life. It is a story about intrigue and betrayal and cruelty. You wonder how Juana kept her sanity, or was she indeed mad?

This is a great read and I strongly suggest reading it. I think that this book would be great for book clubs to read!

I won this book on Good Reads.


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