The Queen’s Pawn by Christy English
At only nine, Princess Alais of France is sent to live in England until she is of age to wed Prince Richard, son of King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine. Alais is an innocent pawn on the chessboard of dynastic marriage, her betrothal intended to broker an uneasy truce between the nations.
Estranged from her husband, Eleanor sees a kindred spirit in this determined young girl. She embraces Alais as a daughter, teaching the princess what it takes to be a woman of power in a world of men. But as Alais grows to maturity and develops ambitions of her own, Eleanor begins to see her as a threat-and their love for each other becomes overshadowed by their bitter rivalry, dark betrayals, conflicting passions, and a battle for revenge over the throne of England itself. (publisher)
Alais was sent to England, where she was to be married to his father’s first wife’s son Richard. She is taken under Eleanor’s wings and they form very close friendship. When she meets Richard she falls in love instantly. But when she meets the king, Henry II, she just can’t stop thinking about him and whe she catches Richard with another woman, Alais feels betrayed and runs to Henry.
This was very interesting read since there’s not much written about Alais. The story is told from two point of views; Alais and Eleanor. While it was fun to read how both women felt the repeating of things was little tiring. I liked how Eleanor was portrayed and while I liked Richard, at times he seemed a bit too romanticized. Even if I have some serious doubts that Richard would have taken Alais back after she gave birth to Henry’s child, I liked how Richard had a softer side with Alais. But I really wanted to slap Alais when she catches Richard with another woman and feels wronged. I mean, how naive is she? Did she really think he was just gonna wait for her forever? And she had been drooling after Henry herself.
The only real problem I had was how Alais and Eleanor always seemed to know what eachother was thinking. It started sounding like hey had psychic abilities or something. And it was starting to sound little repeative.
But I did enjoy the book and can’t wait for next book!
Published: NAL (2010)
Source: from author for review