Author: Emma Campion
Plot: The King's Mistress tells the story of Alice Perrers, a woman living in 1300s England. She is married to an acceptable merchant, Janyn, and settles into her happy marriage. She soon finds, however, that things are not as simple as they seem - in fact, her husband has been hiding from her his involvement in political intrigue, including ways in which his family has its fate intertwined with that of the English royal family. When Janyn suddenly disappears without a trace, Alice must relocate to the royal court, the only place where she has any hope of protection from the secretive forces that unraveled her marriage. While there she serves the queen, Philippa, and quickly becomes noticed by the king, Edward III. With each passing day Alice finds herself more at the mercy of forces beyond her control, at once tossed about by the powerful men and women who dictate her actions and astutely able to keep afloat with no one but herself to fully rely upon.
Quote: "I did not see at the time how he used our lovemaking to silence my questions, subtly suggesting to me that in wanting to know more than the little he told me I risked my happiness. I was only fourteen and so much in love."
Review: This book was an extremely engaging read that was difficult to put down. It shows how a young woman could be plucked from ohttp://www.librarything.com/addbooks#bscurity and favored with the attention of the king and queen - and how easily that could be a disaster for the woman in question, instead of the boon it immediately appears to be. This book contains love stories, history, and a great deal of mystery and intrigue, much of which plagues Alice throughout her life. The only negative to this book is that the author supposes a close relationship between Alice and Geoffrey Chaucer, which beyond being wholly unnecessary is extremely boring. Luckily these forced interludes are brief and the reader can quickly get past medieval name dropping and back to a great story.