Publication Date: April 14, 2015
Formats: eBook, Paperback
Pages: 400Genre: Historical Fiction
A sweeping tale of ambition, treachery, and passion…
For generations Lady Diana de Vere’s family loyally served England’s crown. But after King Charles II’s untimely death, her father firmly opposes James II’s tyranny. Charles Beauclerk, Duke of St. Albans—the late king’s bastard son by actress Nell Gwyn—also rebels against his newly crowned uncle’s manipulation. Secretly pledging to wed Diana, he departs for the Continent to become a soldier.
Political and religious turmoil bring about revolution and yet another coronation before Charles returns to claim his promised bride. As companion to Queen Mary II, Diana has followed her de Vere forbears into royal service. She expects Charles to abandon his military career after marriage, but he proves unwilling to join the ranks of the courtiers he despises and mistrusts.
In palace corridors and within their own household the young duke and duchess confront betrayals, scandals, and tragedies that threaten to divide them. And neither the privileges of birth nor proximity to the throne can ensure their security, their advancement—or their happiness.
Lady Diana de Vere is the daughter of the Earl of Oxford. As a young woman, Diana meets and enchants King Charles II, winning his favor. However, when King Charles II dies unexpectedly, his brother, James II takes the throne; the coronation of King James II brings about turbulence for politics and religion. Within this time of disorder, Diana falls for one of King Charles II illegitimate sons by Nell Gwyn, Charles Beauclerk, the Duke of St. Albans.
I did not know much about this time in English history and I knew nothing of Diana de Vere before I read this book, so A Pledge of Better Times was very informative for me. At first, the writing threw me into the complicated courts and multiple points of view, which displayed the intrigue, fashions, secrets, and liaisons that happen behind the palace walls. As the story settled on Diana and Charles, I felt that I could relate better. Diana’s story carried through the multiple monarchs of the time and her perseverance as well as the descriptions of the people around her dealing with the chaos makes the history shine.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.
Margaret Porter is an award-winning, bestselling novelist whose lifelong study of British history inspires her fiction and her travels. A former stage actress, she has also worked in film, television, and radio.
For more information please visit Margaret Porter’s website. You can also find her on Facebook here and here, and on Twitter.