The Queen's Vow

The Queen's Vow : A Novel of Isabella of Castile

3.92 (8,075 ratings by Goodreads)
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3.92 (8,075 ratings by Goodreads)

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No one believed I was destined for greatness.
So begins Isabella s story, in this evocative, vividly imagined novel about one of history s most famous and controversial queens the warrior who united a fractured country, the champion of the faith whose reign gave rise to the Inquisition, and the visionary who sent Columbus to discover a New World. Acclaimed author C. W. Gortner envisages the turbulent early years of a woman whose mythic rise to power would go on to transform a monarchy, a nation, and the world.
Young Isabella is barely a teenager when she and her brother are taken from their mother s home to live under the watchful eye of their half-brother, King Enrique, and his sultry, conniving queen. There, Isabella is thrust into danger when she becomes an unwitting pawn in a plot to dethrone Enrique. Suspected of treason and held captive, she treads a perilous path, torn between loyalties, until at age seventeen she suddenly finds herself heiress of Castile, the largest kingdom in Spain. Plunged into a deadly conflict to secure her crown, she is determined to wed the one man she loves yet who is forbidden to her Fernando, prince of Aragon.
As they unite their two realms under one crown, one country, one faith, Isabella and Fernando face an impoverished Spain beset by enemies. With the future of her throne at stake, Isabella resists the zealous demands of the inquisitor Torquemada even as she is seduced by the dreams of an enigmatic navigator named Columbus. But when the Moors of the southern domain of Granada declare war, a violent, treacherous battle against an ancient adversary erupts, one that will test all of Isabella s resolve, her courage, and her tenacious belief in her destiny.
From the glorious palaces of Segovia to the battlefields of Granada and the intrigue-laden gardens of Seville, "The Queen s Vow" sweeps us into the tumultuous forging of a nation and the complex, fascinating heart of the woman who overcame all odds to become Isabella of Castile.
Praise for "The Queen s Vow"
A masterwork by a skilled craftsman . . . Make a vow to read this book. New York Journal of Books
A beautifully crafted piece of historical fiction . . . Gortner s vivid details blend with his deeply intensive research to re-create Isabella and Castile in a way that the reader will find compelling and immersive, bringing not just the Queen but the whole nation to life. "RT Book Reviews"
A fascinating story . . . Through his creative and spellbinding storytelling, Gortner s readers come to know Isabella intimately in mind, heart and body as she lives through a tumultuous time, her intense longing to be the determiner of her own unique destiny. Wichita Falls "Times Record News"
A novel of triumph as Isabella vanquishes her enemies one by one . . . [She is] a very human and appealing character. " The Roanoke Times"
Politically charged, passionate . . . [a] well-researched, intriguing historical. Bookreporter"
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Product details

  • Hardback | 382 pages
  • 164 x 241 x 33mm | 617g
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • Maps
  • 0345523962
  • 9780345523969
  • 808,596

Review quote

PRAISE FOR The Queen's Vow

"Isabella is most often remembered as the queen who financed Christopher Columbus's voyage to the Americas, but in this vivid novel, Gortner reveals that she is much more than this. She is an inspiring young woman who bravely faced the turmoil that surrounded her and managed to hold on to her crown...Gortner has again produced a richly detailed book that is hard to put down."--"Historical Novels Review"

"Gortner...presents a believable account of a woman determined to control her own fate and shape Spain into a great country."--"Booklist"

PRAISE FOR The Confessions of Catherine de Medici

"Alison Weir and Philippa Gregory fans will devour this smashing fictional biography."--"Booklist"
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"Highly recommended . . . compelling and fascinating."--"Historical Novels Review"

PRAISE FOR The Last Queen

"An absorbing account of one of history's most fascinating women."--Donna Woolfolk Cross, author of "Pope Joan"

"Emotional and political tensions soar . . . Disturbing royal secrets and court manipulations wickedly twist this enthralling story, brilliantly told."--"Publishers Weekly"
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About C. W. Gortner

C. W. Gortner s historical novels have garnered international praise and been translated into fourteen languages. He divides his time between Northern California and Antigua, Guatemala."
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Rating details

3.92 out of 5 stars
- 8,075 ratings
5 30% (2,459)
4 38% (3,078)
3 25% (2,051)
2 5% (382)
1 1% (105)
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