Let’s get started!
1. EMPRESS MATILDA (1102-1167)
After her father, Henry I, died naming her his heir, Matilda’s cousin, Stephen, subsequently took the throne for himself. Matilda never stopped fighting for what was rightfully hers. Though she would never be named Queen of England in her own right, she was able to convince Stephen to name her son, the future Henry II, his successor over his own children.
Choose a book with a protagonist who stands their ground.
For me, the obvious choice for this one is Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games. She knows her mind and sticks to it. Sometimes she can be a bit too much, but she definitely follows through with her badassery.
2. ELEANOR OF AQUITAINE (1122-1204)
Before she married Henry II and became Queen of England in 1152, Eleanor was Queen of France as the wife of Louis VII. She sought an annulment from her marriage to Louis, and he eventually agreed because 15 years of marriage had produced no sons, only for Eleanor to go on to have eight children with Henry—five of whom were sons. Ouch!
Choose a book or series in which the heroine has more than one romantic relationship.
Well, this one could also be Katniss, but I think I will go with another favorite series. The Twilight Saga has Bella in love with Edward and Jacob, so definitely more than one romantic relationship.
3. ELEANOR OF CASTILE (1241-1290)
A keen patron of literature and a successful businesswoman in her own right, Eleanor was Edward I’s first wife. He was so heartbroken when she died that he erected the Eleanor Crosses, twelve stone crosses marking the places where her body rested overnight on its journey from Lincolnshire, where she died, to her burial place in London. Three of the crosses still survive today.
Choose a bittersweet book.
The Dictionary of Lost Words was very bittersweet for me. It is a wonderful book with a touching story. But, the protagonist deals with a lot of heartache which makes the whole book bittersweet for me.
4. ISABELLA OF FRANCE (1295-1358)
Often known as the ‘She-Wolf of France’, Isabella was Edward II’s wife. Unfortunately for Edward, he wasn’t particularly good at being king, and Isabella soon grew tired of his (possibly homosexual) relationship with his favorite, Hugh Despenser. After she began an affair with English nobleman Roger Mortimer while on a diplomatic mission to France, the pair returned to England with an army and she deposed Edward and acted as regent until their son, the future Edward III, came of age.
Choose a book where the romance overtook the plot.
I have to agree with Julie in that I read a lot of romances, so that is the focus of most books I’ve read. But, I do know that The Princess Diaries series is full of romance that overshadows the princess theme.
5. PHILIPPA OF HAINAULT (1310/15-1369)
Queen of England as the wife of Edward III, Philippa was beloved by the English people for her compassion and kindness. The Queen’s College, Oxford, founded in 1341, is named in her honor.
Choose a book set at a university.
I don’t have any books set at a university in my collection of read books, but I do have The Magicians on my TBR. This one has been on my list for quite some time, so I guess I should read it soon.
6. JOAN OF NAVARRE (1368-1437)
Joan was Henry IV’s second wife. Six years after his death, Joan was accused of attempting to poison her stepson, Henry V, through witchcraft and was imprisoned for four years until he ordered her release, just six weeks before he suddenly died.
Choose a book about witches.
Another one from my TBR pile is A Discovery of Witches. I love witches as a theme, but don’t seem to read many.
And that’s it my book-loving friends. I’m not going to tag anyone, but if you do decide to do this one, please link back to me so I can read your answers.