The King’s Daughter recounts the life of Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV, sister to Edward V and wife to Henry VII and mother to Henry VIII. This is all pretty much well known history and enough reviewers and the product page recap the main story line I don’t want to rehash it again. Worth’s version of Elizabeth’s life, told in the first person POV, just ended up for this reader to be a sodding, boring mess – I ended up skimming through the last 200 pages.
The goodies were really really good and the baddies were really really bad. Elizabeth herself was so pure and perfect I was waiting for her to cut her finger so I could see if she would bleed sugar, while her mother Elizabeth Woodville was practicing witchcraft when she wasn’t busy running into sanctuary. Her son Arthur is pure as the driven snow, while young Harry (the future Henry VIII) is a borderline child sociopath. As for Henry’s mother Margaret Beaufort – well the only person I can think of to portray her in the movie is Cruella de Vil. Honestly, Henry VII is the only character who got a fair shake in this one.
As for historical accuracy and the author’s research from her notes, I am not a historian so I’m not one to judge. However, the bit about proving to Henry VII that she was a virgin has no historical basis that I’ve heard of, nor does the author mention in her notes where she picked up that bit of supposition from. Worse yet, is the unrequited love (and never-ending even after death) Elizabeth holds for her uncle Richard.
To top it all off, way too much melodrama and “woe” is me from both Elizabeth’s (mother and daughter) and over the top prose. Here we have Elizabeth’s reaction after Ann (that would be Queen Ann Richard’s wife) as she tells niece Elizabeth her uncle will need her,
“I felt as if a shutter had been thrown open, pouring in brilliant light. The sleepless nights, the pounding of my heart each time King Richard drew near; my shyness in his presence….”
Elizabeth’s mother giving her advice on keeping her husband in line,
“You’d know what to do — you’d get into bed and lick that king of yours until he stops listening to his mother and turns to you”. Eeeewwww.
Get the point? It is unfortunate, as so little is really known about Elizabeth of York’s life and a well written fleshed out novel on her is sorely lacking – however, this is not it. While its certainly not the worst historical ever written, IMO it’s far from the best as well. If you’re dead set on reading this, get it from the library first and then buy it if you love it.