Vicky Peterwald: Survivor by Mike Shepherd
The 2nd in the series sees Grand Duchess Vicky Peterwald feeding the hungry and plotting war against her evil grasping stepmother. There is kidnapping, nudity, shagging, very short chapters, long interior monologues and not much happens. This was dull and mediocre. I will give book 3 a chance as I am curious to see how the story goes.
Gilt by Katherine Longshore
Katherine Tylney is best friends with the ghastly grasping social climbing Catherine Howard. When Catherine becomes the 5th wife of Henry VIII, Katherine and her romantic idealism comes to court. She is shocked when mean girl Catherine engages in dubious behaviour with a gibbering cretin and knows the queen’s unsatisfactory, undignified behaviour is bound to come out.
Katherine can only observe the sickening drift towards fatal catastrophe as all around her damn themselves and the highest echelons of the court observe all with the dourest eye. This was a good read with a different interpretation of Catherine Howard as a profligate bully who goes to her end disencumbered by remorse or contrition. Katherine regards her best friend forever with more dread than affection and faces life with improbable equanimity.
“Catherine Howard, forgotten daughter of the forgotten third son of the man who had once been Duke of Norfolk.”
“A queen can be ruined by injudicious actions and immodest gossip.”