In this New York Times bestseller that inspired the critically acclaimed Starz miniseries The White Queen, Philippa Gregory tells the tale of Anne Neville, a beautiful young woman who must navigate the treachery of the English court as her father, known as the Kingmaker, uses her and her sister as pawns in his political game.
The Kingmaker’s Daughter—Philippa Gregory’s first sister story since The Other Boleyn Girl—is the gripping tale of the daughters of the man known as the Kingmaker, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick: the most powerful magnate in fifteenth-century England. Without a son and heir, he uses his daughters, Anne and Isabel, as pawns in his political games, and they grow up to be influential players in their own right.
At the court of Edward IV and his beautiful queen, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne grows from a delightful child to become ever more fearful and desperate when her father makes war on his former friends. Married at age fourteen, she is soon left widowed and fatherless, her mother in sanctuary and her sister married to the enemy. Anne manages her own escape by marrying Richard, Duke of Gloucester, but her choice will set her on a collision course with the overwhelming power of the royal family.
The bonds of sisterhood infuse Gregory's latest in the Cousin's War series (after The Lady of the Rivers). The stakes are high as Anne and Isabel Neville, daughters of the earl of Warwick ("The Kingmaker"), vie for their father's favor and a chance at the throne. The earl has long mentored the young King Edward and Edward's brothers George and Richard in hopes of marrying his daughters into royalty. But when Edward weds the commoner Elizabeth Woodville, the Kingmaker arranges a secret marriage between Isabel and George, and launches an uprising that will result in the earl's death, leaving Isabel entangled in a dangerous political web and Anne having recently married already a widow. However, Richard a tough soldier who honors family obligations while his brothers sell out soon comes to Anne's rescue. In addition to Gregory handling a complicated history, she convincingly details women's lives in the 1400s and the competitive love between sisters. By the book's end, Anne and Richard have ascended the throne, but the War of the Roses has yet to be won, setting the stage for a sequel showdown.