Splendid and sumptuous historical novel from this
internationally bestselling author, telling of the early life of Katherine of
We think of her as the barren wife of a notorious king; but
behind this legacy lies a fascinating story. Katherine of Aragon is born
Catalina, the Spanish Infanta, to parents who are both rulers and warriors.
Aged four, she is betrothed to Arthur, Prince of Wales, and is raised to be
Queen of England. She is never in doubt that it is her destiny to rule that
far-off, wet, cold land. Her faith is tested when her prospective father-in-law
greets her arrival in her new country with a great insult; Arthur seems little
better than a boy; the food is strange and the customs coarse.
Slowly she adapts to the first Tudor court, and life as Arthur’s
wife grows ever more bearable. But when the studious young man dies, she is
left to make her own future: how can she now be queen, and found a dynasty?
Only by marrying Arthur’s young brother, the sunny but spoilt Henry.
His father and grandmother are against it; her powerful parents
prove little use. Yet Katherine is her mother’s daughter and her fighting
spirit is strong. She will do anything to achieve her aim; even if it means
telling the greatest lie, and holding to it.
Philippa Gregory proves yet again that behind the apparently
familiar face of history lies an astonishing story: of women warriors
influencing the future of Europe, of revered heroes making deep mistakes, and
of an untold love story which changes the fate of a nation.