Mailbox Monday!

Another Monday, Another Mailbox!! This is a feature where we all share with each other the yummy books that showed up at our doors! WARNING: Mailbox Mondays can lead to extreme envy and GINORMOUS wishlists!!

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia at The Printed Page.

This week I didn't get much in the way of my mailbox, but I did splurge and picked up a few books for myself!  From Barnes & Noble I got...

by Norah Lofts

SYNOPSIS:  Eleanor of Aquitaine rules as a modern heroine in the twelfth century, in this beloved classic of royal fiction from renowned author Norah Lofts. 

At a time when a woman’s value was measured solely by her wealth and the number of sons she bore, Eleanor was the high-spirited, stubborn, and intelligent heiress to the vast duchy of Aquitaine. 

Her leadership inspired the loyalty of her people, but she was continually doubted and silenced by the men who ruled beside her—the less wise but far more powerful men of the church and court who were unwilling to lose power to a woman, regardless of her rank or ability. 

Through marriages to two kings, two Crusades, and the births of ten children— including the future King Richard the Lionhearted—Eleanor solidified her place in history. In Eleanor the Queen, Norah Lofts brings to life a brave and complex woman who was centuries ahead of her time. 

by Jane Feathers

SYNOPSIS:  At Queen Elizabeth’s palace, intrigue abounds. And when a naive girl with a gift for keen observation enters the court, she can hardly imagine the role she will play in bringing England—indeed, the whole of Europe—to the brink of war. Nor can she foresee her own journey to the brink of ecstasy and beyond.

When she becomes a junior lady of Queen Elizabeth’s bedchamber, Rosamund is instructed by her cousin, the brilliant and devious secretary of state Sir Francis Walsingham, to record everything she observes. Her promised reward: a chance at a good marriage. But through her brother Thomas, Rosamund finds herself drawn to the forbidden, rough-and-tumble world of theatre, and to Thomas’s friend, the dramatic, impetuous playwright Christopher Marlowe. And then Rosamund meets Will Creighton—a persuasive courtier, poet, and would-be playwright who is the embodiment of an unsuitable match.

The unsanctioned relationship between Rosamund and Will draws the wrath of Elizabeth, who prides herself on being the Virgin Queen. Rosamund is sent in disgrace to a remote castle that holds Elizabeth’s cousin Mary Stuart, the imprisoned Queen of Scots. Here, Walsingham expects Rosamund to uncover proof of a plot against Elizabeth. But surely, nothing good can come of putting an artless girl in such close proximity to so many seductive players and deceptive games. Unless, of course, Rosamund can discover an affinity for passion and intrigue herself.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jane Feather conspires with history to tell this dazzling story about two very real, very wily queens— and one impassioned young woman whose life they change forever. 

by Leonie Frieda

SYNOPSIS:  Poisoner, despot, necromancer -- the dark legend of Catherine de Medici is centuries old. In this critically hailed biography, Leonie Frieda reclaims the story of this unjustly maligned queen to reveal a skilled ruler battling extraordinary political and personal odds -- from a troubled childhood in Florence to her marriage to Henry, son of King Francis I of France; from her transformation of French culture to her fight to protect her throne and her sons' birthright. Based on thousands of private letters, it is a remarkable account of one of the most influential women ever to wear a crown.

by Thomas J. Craughwell

SYNOPSIS:  Conflict. Glory. Romance. Tragedy. Bloodshed. No matter the era, the lives of the men and women who have wielded power and controlled destinies make for fascinating reading. 

5,000 Years of Royalty compiles the rich pageant of history into a lushly illustrated, accessible guide that will delight both the amateur historian and inveterate royal watcher alike. Profiles include: 

The Assyrian warrior king Ashurbanipal, who hitched the kings of four nations to his chariot for a victory parade; 

Montezuma, who was stoned to death by his Aztec subjects upon his capture by the Spanish; 

Ivan the Terrible of Russia, who, upon the suspicious death of this wife, executed bot only those he thought were guilty, but also their families, so that no one would remain alive to pray for their souls; 

Mary I, Queen of Scots, who had no luck with men—her closest advisor was dragged from her room and stabbed to death and her husband's house was blown up while he was lying sick in bed; 

King Leopold II of Belgium, who's private colony in the Congo caused the death of more than 2 million Africans working for him.

And from Prometheus Books...

by Stuart Lutz

SYNOPSIS:  When we read about famous historical events, we may wonder about the firsthand experiences of the people directly involved. What insights could be gained if we could talk to someone who remembered the Civil War, or the battle to win the vote for women, or Thomas Edison's struggles to create the first electric light bulb? Amazingly, many of these experiences are still preserved in living memory by the final survivors of important, world-changing events.

In this unique oral history book, author and historic document specialist Stuart Lutz records the stories told to him personally by people who witnessed many of history's most famous events. Among many others, Lutz interviewed:

-the final three Civil War widows (one Union and two Confederate)
-the final pitcher to surrender a home run to Babe Ruth
-the last suffragette
-the last living person to fly with Amelia Earhart
-the final American World War I soldier
-the last surviving employees of Thomas Edison, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Harry Houdini.

The wide-ranging stories involve humor (the 1920 Olympic medalist who stole the original Olympic flag), tragedy (the last survivor of the 1915 Lusitania sinking), heroism (the final Medal of Honor recipient for actions on Pearl Harbor Day), and eyewitnesses to great events (one of the last scientists at the first nuclear chain reaction, and the final Iwo Jima flag raiser).

In more than three-dozen chapters, Lutz blends background information in a lively narrative with the words of the interviewees, so that readers not familiar with the historical episodes described can understand what occurred and the long-term significance of the events.
A book that truly makes the past come alive, The Last Leaf will fascinate not only history buffs but anyone who likes a good story.

What goodies came your way?




  1. All the Queen's Players sound really good.

  2. The 5,000 Years of Royalty looks interesting. I love to look at the history bargain sections at B&N and Borders - they usually have some great coffee table like books about stuff like this. I've gotten some really nice books about England, Castles and other far off places for next to nothing. And I like the way they look stacked up on my library table!

  3. I hope to get to the Lofts one day too, but the one that really caught my eye on your list this week was The Last Leaf. I am definitely keeping my eye out for that one.

  4. These all look great! Will be adding them all to my WL now...

    Happy reading!

  5. there are some very interesting books on your list this week.THE LAST LEAF and 5,000 YEARS OF ROYALTY in particular I'll have to put on my wish list.

    In my mailbox this past week:
    PIECES OF SKY by Kaki Warner (hist-fic chick)
    THE CRAZY SCHOOL by Cornelia Read (Sea of Books)
    TRIUMPH IN ARMS by Jennifer Blake

    I went to Barnes & Noble and got a bunch of books on sale for mu grandsons' Christmas presents.
    At Books.A.Million i got
    THE PRINCESS AND THE HOUND by Mette Ivie Harrison
    2 Gimbles - a handy device to hold your book open to free you hand for other chores like eating, brushing teeth, whatever.

  6. All the books sound very good. A good week for you.

  7. I love Catherine de Medici. In fact the story of her family is a really interested one. I hope you enjoy it.

    Happy Reading!!!!!!

  8. All of these look terribly interesting and I have added a few to my wish list. Thanks for sharing them! I will be eager to hear what you them when you get the chance to read them!

  9. I just got the Lofts book in the mail today, it looks fantastic.

  10. I must grab the Nora Lofts...clearly another woman obsessed by Eleanor...

  11. the last leaf sounds like a good one.

  12. What a fabulous bunch of books! All the Queen's Players looks good, and The Last Leaf appeals to me very much.


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