Review: To Be Queen: A Novel of the Early Life of Eleanor of Aquitaine by Christy English

by Christy English

Publication Date:  April 5, 2011
NAL Trade


The author of The Queen's Pawn delves into the early life of the legendary Eleanor of Aquitaine in her new historical novel.

After her father's sudden death, fifteen-year-old Eleanor is quickly crowned Duchess of Aquitaine and betrothed to King Louis VII. When her new husband cannot pronounce her given name, Alienor becomes Eleanor, Queen of France.

Although Louis is enamored of his bride, the newly crowned king is easily manipulated by the church and a God that Eleanor doesn't believe in. Now, if she can find the strength to fight for what she wants, Eleanor may finally find the passion she has longed for, and the means to fulfill her legacy as Queen.


In her sophomore novel author Christy English takes readers once again back to the 13th century and into the early life of one of history’s most powerful women, Eleanor of Aquitaine. From her childhood in Aquitaine, where she learned queenship at the knee of her father, William, Duke of Aquitaine through her marriage to King Louis VII, To Be Queen explores Eleanor’s trials and tribulations as a new wife and Queen of France.

In Aquitaine, Eleanor’s beauty and charm are often serenaded at her father’s Courts of Love and she learns early how to use her attributes to her advantage. However, when she arrives at Louis’ court Eleanor’s allure is lost on the strictly religious country and she struggles to gain Louis’ attention. Eleanor, who grew up with no ties to the church, is finding it difficult to understand Louis’ devotion and vows to devise a way to have that devotion transferred to her. But the open hostility shown to Eleanor by Louis’ advisors and the people of France make her situation that much more difficult. Yet Eleanor is not a woman who will bow to anyone and it’s this strength and fortitude which endear her to so many and which earned her a place in history, or should I say “herstory”.

Rich in detail, with vivid descriptions and an inspirational heroine who will capture your heart, To Be Queen is a fantastic read about a woman who would eventually become the only woman to be both Queen of England and Queen of France, as well as a Duchess in her own right. I highly recommend!

For more information please visit Christy English's WEBSITE.

FTC:  I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review.



  1. I have read so many excellent reviews of this book

  2. I loooved this book! Absolutely adore Christy English's writing style and passion for anything to do with Eleanor of Aquitaine!

  3. Thank you for your review. This book is firmly on my Must Read List.

  4. Oh I'm so glad this was good -- I've been curious about it because I really like Eleanor.

  5. Great review! her story is sure fascinating and it would be wonderful to read about

  6. Wow, love the sound of this book. Not only for me, but also about a friend of mine who loves history. ;)


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