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Medieval era, John's reign

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Medieval era, John's reign

Postby Misfit » Thu May 15th, 2014, 3:42 pm

You guys can help me answer my questions or not. Or just share in my pain. I simply have to get this out somewhere before I burst. Note: I'm still in the early stages of this unnamed medieval romance. Granted it is a romance and not being pushed as a historical novel, but still...

As the book opens, the heroine's younger sister is on a window ledge preparing to commit suicide by jumping. She's all heart broken over some man who dumped her and broke her heart.

He was speaking with the petulance of a child, exaggerated, with dribble flying from his lips. Sean knew that paroxysms were imminent.


I was not aware that King John had seizures.

The sleeves were long with trailing cuffs, the neckline daringly low, and the bodice tapered at the waist to emphasize her slender torso. A lovely necklace of rough-cut emeralds finished the look.


The heroine's dress for a court dinner in the Tower. I don't think either she or the younger sister cover their heads. Could be wrong though.

The heroine is introduced to William Marshal:

“My lord William Marshall, may I present the Lady Sheridan St. James, eldest daughter and heiress of the late Henry St. James, 3rd Earl of Bath and Glastonbury.”


I know Wiki isn't 100% accurate, but according to them there weren't earls of Bath until the late 1400s.

Not a question, but an observation. I loathe the make the villain stinky and smelly so's we know how bad and evil he really is.

John, a short man with a droopy eye and noticeably bad hygiene, gestured benevolently to the group in the hall.


Our heroine's dilemma at the dinner table:

William, Bishop of Coventry, eventually showed himself; a slight man that reeked of alcohol, he seated himself and several retainers across the table from Jocelin and the St. James women. He greeted Jocelin amiably, introduced himself to the ladies, and spoke well of Henry St. James. He seemed congenial enough. But he finished the otherwise normal conversation by running an inviting foot against Sheridan’s leg...She casually shifted so that her leg was not within reach of his dirty toes, but it seemed the bishop had long legs and managed to stroke her ankle once again with his cold digits. When she cast him a baleful glance, he ran his tongue over his lips and grinned.


:eek: :eek: :eek:

That experience with the bishop unsettled our heroine and she excuses herself to find the (outdoor) privy. Would there not be some indoor accommodations for the ladies in the Tower? She doesn't know where to find it, so accepts guidance from:

Sheridan shook the first two off but allowed the third, a young lad dressed in red bloomers, to show her to the door.


Bloomers go back that far?
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
Lisa
Bibliophile
Favorite HF book: Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman
Preferred HF: Any time period/location. Timeslip, usually prefer female POV. Also love Gothic melodrama.
Location: Northeast Scotland

Postby Lisa » Thu May 15th, 2014, 3:58 pm

Oh my :eek:

That seems a lot of telling rather than showing as well.

I just checked and it's as I suspected - I've read another book by this author that also begins with an attempted suicide, has a stinky villain, and shares the same writing style. Also, the time setting was made apparent to the reader by describing events that were happening in the background, rather than the more subtle details.

Still, as a purely fluffy historical romance it was fine.

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Thu May 15th, 2014, 4:17 pm

I have a couple of others by this author I've picked up on the freebies. Started one, but the book flew when the heroine was wearing bloomers.

Her books really do get the rave! wow! best! book! ever! exclamation point overload ratings at Amazon, so perhaps it's just me.

*shrugs*
At home with a good book and the cat...

...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
Lisa
Bibliophile
Favorite HF book: Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman
Preferred HF: Any time period/location. Timeslip, usually prefer female POV. Also love Gothic melodrama.
Location: Northeast Scotland

Postby Lisa » Thu May 15th, 2014, 8:27 pm

Yeah I've got a few of the freebies as well, only read one as yet though after realising it didn't quite match up to the rave reviews. Not unreadable, but not 5* either.

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Thu May 15th, 2014, 8:42 pm

"LadyB" wrote:Yeah I've got a few of the freebies as well, only read one as yet though after realising it didn't quite match up to the rave reviews. Not unreadable, but not 5* either.


I've seen some of the critical reviewers get a bashing in the comments. Seriously devoted fans there.
At home with a good book and the cat...

...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
EC2
Bibliomaniac
Location: Nottingham UK
Contact:

Postby EC2 » Thu May 15th, 2014, 10:42 pm

You guys can help me answer my questions or not. Or just share in my pain. I simply have to get this out somewhere before I burst. Note: I'm still in the early stages of this unnamed medieval romance. Granted it is a romance and not being pushed as a historical novel, but still...

As the book opens, the heroine's younger sister is on a window ledge preparing to commit suicide by jumping. She's all heart broken over some man who dumped her and broke her heart.

Quote:
He was speaking with the petulance of a child, exaggerated, with dribble flying from his lips. Sean knew that paroxysms were imminent.
I was not aware that King John had seizures.

He didn't. His dad flew into rages that were involved dramatic thrashing about the place but John didn't go in for raving fits. How does dribble fly?

Quote:
The sleeves were long with trailing cuffs, the neckline daringly low, and the bodice tapered at the waist to emphasize her slender torso. A lovely necklace of rough-cut emeralds finished the look.
The heroine's dress for a court dinner in the Tower. I don't think either she or the younger sister cover their heads. Could be wrong though.

Trailing cuffs were out of fashion by then and very old lady. The tight sleeve was all the rage. A necklace of rough cut emeralds is an anachronism as is the low cut neckline. Covering the hair was usual if one was of marriagable age.

The heroine is introduced to William Marshal:

Quote:
“My lord William Marshall, may I present the Lady Sheridan St. James, eldest daughter and heiress of the late Henry St. James, 3rd Earl of Bath and Glastonbury.”
I know Wiki isn't 100% accurate, but according to them there weren't earls of Bath until the late 1400s.

There weren't women called Sheridan either; it's not a name for women in that period. Nor would she have been introduced like that. It sounds like cod Regency.



Quote:
John, a short man with a droopy eye and noticeably bad hygiene, gestured benevolently to the group in the hall.

No evidence of a droopy eye. John's hygiene (interesting choice of word) was actually known to better than most. He was always taking baths.

Our heroine's dilemma at the dinner table:

Quote:
William, Bishop of Coventry, eventually showed himself; a slight man that reeked of alcohol, he seated himself and several retainers across the table from Jocelin and the St. James women. He greeted Jocelin amiably, introduced himself to the ladies, and spoke well of Henry St. James. He seemed congenial enough. But he finished the otherwise normal conversation by running an inviting foot against Sheridan’s leg...She casually shifted so that her leg was not within reach of his dirty toes, but it seemed the bishop had long legs and managed to stroke her ankle once again with his cold digits. When she cast him a baleful glance, he ran his tongue over his lips and grinned.

So the bishop is barefoot at a royal feast? Mmm Hmmm...?

That experience with the bishop unsettled our heroine and she excuses herself to find the (outdoor) privy. Would there not be some indoor accommodations for the ladies in the Tower? She doesn't know where to find it, so accepts guidance from:

Usually there's a garderobe to hand, but could be somewhere else. Usually her maid would have accompanied her if she had to go pee.

Quote:
Sheridan shook the first two off but allowed the third, a young lad dressed in red bloomers, to show her to the door.

Red bloomers?!!! Now there's a thing! No, sounds very like an illustration from Alice in Wonderland!
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Thu May 15th, 2014, 11:56 pm

Loooooool! More questions later. Diner's over, off to read. Thanks EC.
Last edited by Misfit on Thu May 15th, 2014, 11:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: stupid auto correct
At home with a good book and the cat...

...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
EC2
Bibliomaniac
Location: Nottingham UK
Contact:

Postby EC2 » Fri May 16th, 2014, 8:58 am

Thinking about it: She wouldn't have been seated next to the bishop in the first place - She's an unmarried woman not of the top rank. Small fry. He had been recently elected bishop of Coventry - hadn't yet been consecrated yet, but had been around in the church for some time and was pretty elderly. He was one of King John's senior advisers at Magna Carta. It's also highly unlikely she'd have been introduced to William Marshal.
Is there a year and place given for this meeting?
Les proz e les vassals

Souvent entre piez de chevals

Kar ja li coard n’I chasront



'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'


Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal



www.elizabethchadwick.com

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Fri May 16th, 2014, 12:45 pm

"EC2" wrote:Thinking about it: She wouldn't have been seated next to the bishop in the first place - She's an unmarried woman not of the top rank. Small fry. He had been recently elected bishop of Coventry - hadn't yet been consecrated yet, but had been around in the church for some time and was pretty elderly. He was one of King John's senior advisers at Magna Carta. It's also highly unlikely she'd have been introduced to William Marshal.
Is there a year and place given for this meeting?


I'll get back to you on that and more when I get to a desktop. This is like EL James deciding she can write about Seattle with ten minutes of google.
At home with a good book and the cat...

...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Fri May 16th, 2014, 2:22 pm

I have to work at work for a few hours, but until all the time cards roll in for payroll, I got a couple of minutes to copy and paste what I highlighted last night.

“Does she have suitors?” “Nay. Jocelin has told me that she has refused every man her father attempted to contract with. Now it is the bishop’s duty to find her a husband, which will be no easy task. The man actually listens to her opinion...


John is quite the sexual predator, even having young unmarried virgins brought to his bed to be abused and let his minions at them afterwards.


"For nine years, I have cleaned up his leavings, disposing of the women who have died as a result of his lust and delivering those who managed to survive back to their homes.”


The younger sister's attitude towards going to church (an earl's daughter):

They all knew how Alys hated attending mass. Too often, she fell asleep in the middle of it and snored like an old dog.


More on John the sexual sadist:

“Where have you been, de Lara?” the king was still in bed, his latest conquest cowering beside him with the filthy bedcovers pulled to her neck.


and...

The room was dark and smelled like painful sex.


John will even consider carrying off the daughter of an earl:

To summon the daughter, to take your rights as king, may inflame the barons even more. They will not view your bedding the daughter of their beloved dead ally kindly.


Ewwww. I have no idea where his queen is at. She's only just been mentioned and only because there's going to be a masque ball in honor of her birthday.

Shopping for cloth at the London markets.

A fabric called Albatross was a particular favorite; it was very fine, all-wool, and favored by women in the cloister for their wimples.


Another favorite fabric was called Brocaded Brilliantine – a silk and wool mix styled in a brocade pattern. Lastly, the merchant showed her something new from Paris called French Crepon, a delicate yet durable weave.


“My white silk that Father brought from France,” she said. “I would wear the gold girdle with it.” The maid fled to prepare the garment. It was the most expensive gown Sheridan owned, a magnificent white piece that hung off her shoulders with a wide, rounded neck, a long waistline, and huge belled sleeves. Gold and white embroidery lined the neckline, edge of the sleeves, and the entire hemline of the gown. It was, in a word, spectacular.



She also bought 'gardenia oil'. I will have to google later.
At home with a good book and the cat...

...is the only place I want to be


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