I'll add to this list of books as I hear about releases. Do let me know if you know of one that I've missed or you're publishing one soon.
Recent and forthcoming factual history books...
A History of the English Monarchy: From Boadicea to Elizabeth I by Gareth Russell
In A History of the English Monarchy, historian Gareth Russell traces the story of the English monarchy and the interactions between popular belief, religious faith and brutal political reality that helped shape the extraordinary journey of one of history’s most important institutions.
From the birth of the nation to the dazzling court of Elizabeth I, A History of the English Monarchy charts the fascinating path of the English monarchy from the uprising of 'Warrior Queen' Boadicea in AD60 through each king and queen up to the 'Golden Age' of Elizabeth I. Russell offers a fresh take on a fascinating subject as old as the nation itself. Legends, tales and, above all, hard facts tell an incredible story... a history of the English Monarchy.
Paperback: 322 pages
Publisher: MadeGlobal Publishing (March 24, 2015)
Mary Boleyn: In a Nutshell by Sarah Bryson
MadeGlobal's History in a Nutshell Series aims to give readers a good grounding in a historical topic in a concise, easily digestible and accessible way.
In Mary Boleyn in a Nutshell, Sarah Bryson discusses the controversies surrounding Mary Boleyn's birth, her alleged relationships with two kings, her portraiture and appearance, and her life and death. Mary survived the brutal events of 1536 and was able to make her own choices, defying the social rules of her times by marrying for love. It is from Mary that the Boleyn bloodline extends to the present day.
Sarah Bryson, creator of the popular “Anne Boleyn: From Queen to History” Facebook page, brings together what is known about Mary Boleyn, the shadowy sister of Queen Anne Boleyn.
Paperback: 82 pages
Publisher: MadeGlobal Publishing (March 18, 2015)
Jasper Tudor: Godfather of the Tudor Dynasty by Debra Bayani
New, fully revised and edited edition.
Jasper Tudor, born in secrecy in 1431, rose to become one of the key supporters of King Henry VI during the difficult period of English history known as the Wars of the Roses. Devoted to the Lancastrian cause and to his nephew Henry Tudor, Jasper's loyalty led him through a life full of adventure.
When he was just six years old, Jasper's life was changed dramatically by the death of his mother, the dowager queen Katherine de Valois, and the arrest of his father Owen Tudor soon afterwards. Jasper and his older brother Edmund were called to court and by 1452 they became the first Welshmen to be elevated to the English peerage. Sadly, Edmund died in captivity in 1456, leaving Jasper to protect his brother's child, the future king Henry VII.
Jasper's dedication to the Lancastrian cause took him through many of the well-known battles of the Wars of the Roses, including the historic victory at Bosworth. It is clear that Henry VII owed an enormous part of his success in claiming the throne in 1485 to his uncle, who was his closest adviser, confidante and mentor.
In this detailed biography, Debra Bayani clearly shows that Jasper Tudor was a key figure in the tumultuous history of England, detailing his life from his birth in 1431 to his death in 1495. He can rightly be called the “Godfather of the Tudor Dynasty”.
This edition includes a comprehensive appendix with contemporary Welsh poems translated into English for the first time, and many full page illustrations.
Paperback: 358 pages
Publisher: MadeGlobal Publishing (February 27, 2015)
Henry VIII's Last Love: The Extraordinary Life of Katherine Willoughby, Lady-in-Waiting to the Tudors by David Baldwin
In 1533 Katherine Willoughby married Charles Brandon, Henry VIII's closest friend. She would go on to serve at the court of every Tudor monarch bar Henry VII and Mary Tudor. Duchess of Suffolk at the age of fourteen, she became a powerful woman ruling over her houses at Grimsthorpe and Tattershall in Lincolnshire and wielding subtle influence through her proximity to the king. She grew to know Henry well. In 1538, only three months after Jane Seymour's death, it was reported that they had been 'masking and visiting' together, and in 1543 she became a lady-in-waiting to his sixth wife, Catherine Parr. Henry had a reputation for tiring of his wives once the excitement of the pursuit was over, and in February 1546, only six months after Charles Brandon's death, it was rumoured that Henry intended to wed Katherine Willoughby himself if he could end his present marriage. This is the remarkable story of a life of privilege, tragedy and danger, of a woman who nearly became the seventh wife of Henry VIII.
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Amberley Publishing (4 Mar. 2015)
The Jezebel Effect: Why the Slut Shaming of Famous Queens Still Matters by Kyra Cornelius Kramer
Have you heard that Catherine the Great died having sex with her horse? Or perhaps you prefer the story that Anne Boleyn had six fingers and slept with her brother? Or that Katheryn Howard slept with so many members of the Tudor court that they couldn’t keep track of them all? As juicy and titillating as the tales might be, they are all, patently untrue.
Modern PR firms may claim that no publicity is bad publicity, but that, too, is untrue. The fact that Cleopatra is better known for her seductions than her statecraft, and that Jezebel is remembered as a painted trollop rather than a faithful wife and religiously devout queen, isn’t a way for historians to keep these interesting women in the public eye, rather it’s a subversion of their power, a re-writing of history to belittle and shame these powerful figures, preventing them from becoming icons of feminine strength and capability.
Slut shaming has its roots in our earliest history, but it continues to flourish in our supposedly post-feminist, equal-rights world. It is used to punish women for transgressions against gender norms, threatening the security of their place in society and warning that they’d better be “good girls” and not rock the patriarchal boat, or they, too could end up with people believing they’ve slept with everything from farm animals to relatives.
This is The Jezebel Effect.
The Bones of a King: Richard III Rediscovered by the Grey Friars Research Team
The dramatic story of Richard III, England's last medieval king, captured the world's attention when an archaeological team led by the University of Leicester identified his remains in February 2013. Bones of a King presents the official behind-the-scenes story of the Grey Friars dig based on the research of the specialists directly involved in the discovery.
- A behind-the-scenes look at one of the most exciting historical discoveries of our time
- Features numerous photographs of the dig as well as the king's remains
- Explains the scientific evidence behind his identification, including DNA retrieval and sequencing, soil samples, his wounds and his scoliosis, and what they reveal about his life, his health and even the food he ate
- Builds an expansive view of Richard's life, death and burial, as well as accounts of the treatment of his body prior to burial, and his legacy in the public imagination from the time of his death to the present
- The most extensive and authoritative book written for non-specialists by the team who discovered Richard III
Hardcover: 232 pages
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (April 6, 2015)
The Family of Richard III by Michael Hicks
The Wars of the Roses were quarrels within the Plantagenet family, of which Richard's dynasty, the House of York, was one branch. They were about family trees - the capacity of family relationships both to unite and to divide - and notoriously about the slaughter of cousins, in-laws, brothers, and nephews. The House of York won the first war, with Richard's elder brother becoming king as Edward IV. The 1460s are about the explosion of King Edward IV's family - his brothers (including Richard), his wife and in-laws, and his own offspring - and end in a trial of strength between them. The 1470s are about a second explosion of the House of York, its division into separate nuclear families competing against each other, about the kings' preferences, and in 1483 a sudden violent resolution following Edward IV's death. Richard III claimed to be his brother's heir. The Yorkist establishment refused and shared in Richard's destruction. With the recent discovery of Richard III's skeleton, Professor Michael Hicks, described by BBC HISTORY MAGAZINE as 'the greatest living expert on Richard III' reassesses the family ties and entrails of his wayward and violent family. Many thousands of descendants of Richard's siblings survive, some more interested in their lineage than others, and the book will conclude with an analysis of Richard's DNA and his 'family' as it exists today.
Hardcover: 240 pages
Publisher: Amberley Publishing (4 Mar. 2015)
The Mythology of Richard III by John Ashdown-Hill
Richard III. The name will conjure an image for any reader. Shakespeare's hunchback tyrant who killed his own nephews or a long-denigrated, misunderstood king. This one man's character and actions have divided historians and the controversy has always kept interest in Richard alive. However, curiosity surrounding his life and death has reached unprecedented heights in the aftermath of the discovery of his skeleton under a Leicester car park. The myths that have always swirled around Richard III have risen and multiplied and it is time to set the record straight. John Ashdown-Hill, whose research was instrumental in the discovery of Richard III's remains, explores and unravels the web of myths in this fascinating book.
Hardcover: 240 pages
Publisher: Amberley Publishing (15 April 2015)
The World of Richard III by Kristie Dean
Richard III remains one of the most controversial rulers in history. Whether he was guilty of murdering his nephews or not is a mystery that perhaps will never be solved. Even the location of the battlefield where, on 22 August 1485, Richard was struck down has been a matter of debate. This book leads you on a journey through the landscape of Richard's time. Following Richard's trail, you will visit resplendent castles, towering cathedrals, manor homes and chapels associated with Richard. The Middle Ages come alive again as you visit Tewkesbury Abbey, where Richard helped his brother secure his throne. Witness the stunning vista of Wensleydale as you visit Middleham Castle, Richard's adopted childhood home. Each location is brought to life through engaging narrative and an extensive collection of photographs, floor plans and images.
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Amberley Publishing (9 Feb. 2015)
Dragon's Blood & Willow Bark: The Mysteries of Medieval Medicine by Toni Mount
Calling to mind a time when butchers and executioners knew more about anatomy than university-trained physicians, the phrase 'Medieval Medicine' conjures up horrors for us with our modern ideas on hygiene, instant pain relief and effective treatments. Although no one could allay the dread of plague, the medical profession provided cosmetic procedures, women's sanitary products, dietary advice and horoscopes predicting the sex of unborn babies or the best day to begin a journey. Surgeons performed life-saving procedures, sometimes using anaesthetics, with post-operative antibiotic and antiseptic treatments to reduce the chances of infection. They knew a few tricks to lessen the scarring, too. Yet alongside such expertise, some still believed that unicorns, dragons and elephants supplied vital medical ingredients and the caladrius bird could diagnose recovery or death. This is the weird, wonderful and occasionally beneficial world of medieval medicine. In her new book, popular historian Toni Mount guides the reader through this labyrinth of strange ideas and such unlikely remedies as leeches, meadowsweet, roasted cat and red bed curtains - some of which modern medicine is now coming to value - but without the nasty smells or any threat to personal wellbeing and safety. N.B. No animals, large, furry or mythological, were harmed during research for this book.
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Amberley Publishing (15 April 2015)
Richard III's 'Beloved Cousyn': John Howard and the House of York by John Ashdown-Hill
In 1455 John Howard was an untitled and relatively obscure Suffolk gentleman. At the time of his death at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 he was Earl Marshal, Duke of Norfolk, Lord Admiral and a very rich man. How had he attained these elevations? Through his service to the House of York, and in particular to Richard III during the setting aside of Edward V, John Ashdown-Hill examines why he chose to support Richard, even at the cost of his life; what secrets he knew about Edward IV; what he had to do with the fate of the ‘Princes in the Tower’; and what naval innovations, hitherto ascribed to the Tudors, he introduced. Based on original research and containing previously unpublished material, Richard III’s ‘Beloved Cousyn’ is an important contribution to Ricardian scholarship.
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: The History Press (6 April 2015)
A Queen of a New Invention: Portraits of Lady Jane Grey Dudley, England's Nine Days Queen by J. Stephan Edwards
Lady Jane Grey Dudley was proclaimed Queen of England on 10 July 1553 following the untimely death of Henry VIII's only son and successor, King Edward VI. But sixteen-year- old Jane did not have the support of the majority of her would-be subjects. They rallied instead to Henry VIII's eldest daughter, Mary Tudor. Jane was deposed just nine days after her reign began, earning for her the sobriquet 'The Nine Days Queen.' She was imprisoned in the Tower for six months before finally being executed on 12 February 1554. Queen Jane remains the only English monarch of the past five centuries for whom no genuine portrait is known to have survived. Dozens of images have been put forward over those five centuries, but none has yet been conclusively authenticated. Neither has any comprehensive academic study of the iconography of Jane Grey Dudley ever been previously undertaken or published. Now, through almost a decade of research leading up to this volume, twenty-nine surviving portrait-images said to depict Jane have been carefully and systematically sought out, analyzed, and contextualized in an effort to determine whether any of them may be a reliable likeness. A handful of additional paintings all now lost are also discussed in detail. Finally, the single written account of Jane's physical appearance, an account upon which historians have relied over the past century, is analyzed for its own authenticity.
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Old John Publishing (12 Feb. 2015)
Recent and forthcoming historical novels...
The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau
After her priory in Dartford is closed—collateral damage in tyrannical King Henry VIII’s quest to overthrow the Catholic Church—Joanna resolves to live a quiet and honorable life weaving tapestries, shunning dangerous quests and conspiracies. Until she is summoned to Whitehall Palace, where her tapestry weaving has drawn the King’s attention.
Joanna is uncomfortable serving the King whom she has twice attempted to overthrow—unbeknownst to him. She fears for her life in a court bursting with hidden agendas and a casual disregard for the virtues she holds dear. And her suspicions are confirmed when an assassin attempts to kill her moments after arriving at Whitehall.
Struggling to stay ahead of her most formidable enemy yet, an unknown one, she becomes entangled in dangerous court politics. Her dear friend Catherine Howard is rumored to be one of the King’s mistresses. Joanna is determined to protect young, beautiful, naïve Catherine from becoming the King’s next wife and possibly, victim.
Set in a world of royal banquets and feasts, tournament jousts, ship voyages, and Tower Hill executions, this thrilling tale finds Joanna in her most dangerous situation yet, as she attempts to decide the life she wants to live: nun or wife, spy or subject, rebel or courtier. Joanna must finally choose her fate.
Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (24 Mar. 2015)
A Song of Sixpence: The Story of Elizabeth of York and Perkin Warbeck by Judith Arnopp
In the years after Bosworth, a small boy is ripped from his rightful place as future king of England. Years later when he reappears to take back his throne, his sister Elizabeth, now Queen to the invading King, Henry Tudor, is torn between family loyalty and duty.
As the final struggle between the houses of York and Lancaster is played out, Elizabeth is torn by conflicting loyalty, terror and unexpected love.
Will Elizabeth support the man claiming to be her brother, or will she choose the king?
Set at the court of Henry VII A Song of Sixpence offers a new perspective on the early years of Tudor rule. Elizabeth of York, often viewed as a meek and uninspiring queen, emerges as a resilient woman whose strengths lay in endurance rather than resistance.
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 2868 KB
Print Length: 348 pages
The Traitors Mark by D. K. Wilson
The Real Crime
Hans Holbein, King Henry VIII's portrait painter, died in the autumn of 1543. A century later a chronicler reported that the artist had succumbed to plague, yet there is no contemporary evidence to support this. Suspicions have been raised over the centuries, but the mystery of what actually happened remains unsolved to this day.
Young London goldsmith Thomas Treviot is awaiting a design for a very important jewellery commission from Hans Holbein. When the design fails to turn up, Thomas sends a servant to track Holbein down, only to discover that the painter has disappeared. In his hunt for Holbein and the lost design, Thomas is led into a morass of dangerous political intrigue, Spanish spies and courtiers that is more treacherous than he could ever have anticipated...
Paperback: 480 pages
Publisher: Sphere (12 Mar. 2015)