Tuesday, June 26, 2012

HF Virtual Tours: The Queen's Vow by C.W. Gortner

Title: The Queen's Vow
Author: C.W. Gortner
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Ballantine
Publish Date: June 12, 2012
Source: HF Virtual Tours

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You're a historical fiction fan.
  • You love interesting characters.
What's the Story?: 

From Goodreads.com: "Young Isabella is barely a teenager when she and her brother are taken from their mother’s home to live under the watchful eye of their half-brother, King Enrique, and his sultry, conniving queen. There, Isabella is thrust into danger when she becomes an unwitting pawn in a plot to dethrone Enrique. Suspected of treason and held captive, she treads a perilous path, torn between loyalties, until at age seventeen she suddenly finds herself heiress of Castile, the largest kingdom in Spain. Plunged into a deadly conflict to secure her crown, she is determined to wed the one man she loves yet who is forbidden to her—Fernando, prince of Aragon.

As they unite their two realms under “one crown, one country, one faith,” Isabella and Fernando face an impoverished Spain beset by enemies. With the future of her throne at stake, Isabella resists the zealous demands of the inquisitor Torquemada even as she is seduced by the dreams of an enigmatic navigator named Columbus. But when the Moors of the southern domain of Granada declare war, a violent, treacherous battle against an ancient adversary erupts, one that will test all of Isabella’s resolve, her courage, and her tenacious belief in her destiny.

From the glorious palaces of Segovia to the battlefields of Granada and the intrigue-laden gardens of Seville, The Queen’s Vow sweeps us into the tumultuous forging of a nation and the complex, fascinating heart of the woman who overcame all odds to become Isabella of Castile."

My Two Cents:

I didn't know much about Isabel of Castile before I read this book. Here's what I knew:
  • She and King Ferdinand were the ones that financed Columbus' misadventure to the West Indies.
  • I was familiar with two out of her children. First, I knew of Joanna the Mad (also called Juana), who was considered crazy. Second, I knew of Catherine of Aragon, who went on to become King Henry the VIII of England's first wife.
  • I knew about the involvement with the Spanish Inquisition. 
It was fascinating to get to know more about  this queen. I didn't realize that before the reign of Ferdinand and Isabel that Spain was not fully unified. I knew that they came from different kingdoms but I didn't realize there was so much separation. I liked the relationship between Ferdinand and Isabel. They really love each other and because they come from separate kingdoms, their love is forbidden; however, they're able to marry and they lay the groundwork for a Spanish reunification.

There was so much going on in Spain during this time. It was interesting to see  it through the eyes of someone who was at the forefront of so many of the decisions. It was very interesting to me to see how Ferdinand and Isabel's reign worked. They seemed to be very much on equal footing when it comes to making the rules. 

This will be the second C.W. Gortner book. I love his writing because he does such a good job of getting into the brain of his characters and really making you, the reader, feel what the character is seeing. You begin to feel like you could be friends with the characters because you get to know them that well. 

Bottom line: This is a great book with vivid descriptions. It's perfect for all you historical fiction lovers out there!

Don't Forget to Follow the Rest of the Tour:

Tuesday, June 12th
Review at Devourer of Books
Review at The Novel Life
Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, June 13th
Review at Book Fan Mary
Review at A Novel Affair

Thursday, June 14th
Review at Drey's Library
Author Interview at From the TBR Pile

Friday, June 15th
Book Spotlight at Teresa's Reading Corner
Author Guest Post & Giveaway at The Maiden's Court
Author Interview at The Novel Life

Monday, June 18th

Tuesday, June 19th
Review & Giveaway at Luxury Reading

Wednesday, June 20th
Author Interview at The Owl Bookmark Blog
Live Author Chat Night & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Thursday, June 21st
Review & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages

Friday, June 22nd
Author Interview at Confessions of an Avid Reader

Monday, June 25th

Review at Broken Teepee

Tuesday, June 26th
Review at A Bookish Affair

Wednesday, June 27th

Thursday, June 28th
Author Interview at The True Book Addict

Friday, June 29th
Author Guest Post at The Book Faery Reviews

Monday, July 2nd
Review at Book Drunkard
Author Interview at Reading the Past

Tuesday, July 3rd
Review & Giveaway at Royal Reviews
Review at Acting Balanced

Wednesday, July 4th
Review at The Book Garden

Thursday, July 5th
Author Guest Post & Giveaway at Let Them Read Books

Friday, July 6th
Author Interview at Acting Balanced

Monday, July 9th
Review at The Bookworm
Review, Author Interview & Giveaway at A Bookish Libraria

Tuesday, July 10th

Wednesday, July 11th

Thursday, July 12th
Author Interview & Giveaway at Always with a Book

Friday, July 13th
Author Interview at Just One More Paragraph



  1. I liked this one too, I really learned a lot about Isabella.

    1. She was definitely an interesting historical figure!

  2. Thank you for your great review. I'm honored by your praise and delighted to be here as part of my virtual tour. I hope your readers enjoy The Queen's Vow.

    1. So glad that I got the opportunity to read and review your awesome book! I'm a huge fan!

  3. I'm not a big historical fiction fan, but I would like to know more about the history of the period. I might check this out. Thanks!

  4. I really enjoyed this one. I went into the book with very little knowledge, and I found it very interesting.

    1. I love when you can glean new information from an entertaining book!

  5. This sounds like a book I would really enjoy. Great review!
    Truly Bookish

    1. Thank you! I hope you get a chance to read the book soon!


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