Helen Castor: She Wolves


Ambra5 A Long Walk in the Himalaya A Trek from the Ganges to Kashmir3 Buddhist Warfare4 A Gathering of SpoonsAB A Brief History of Roman Britain Conuest and Civilization4 Victorian Glassworlds Glass Culture and the Imagination 1830 18803 Food Safari4 She Wolves3 India A Portrait2 The Archaeology of Ancient Sicily An intelligent and compelling book by Dr Helen Castor who demonstrates a passion understanding and deep knowledge of her subject She focuses on the reigns of 7 phenomenal women ueens of England In a time when power was seen as the prerogative of men the xercise of power by a woman was seen as unnatural unfeminine and Lawbreakers Suspense Stories even monstrous and thearly ueens such as Empress Matilda Eleanor of Auitaine Isabel of France and Margaret of Anjou were vilified as she wolves often demonstrating power and waging war and certainly displaying ruthlessness but no differently from many kings of the same timeAll of these women were certainly multi faceted all with the HIPPO IN THE GARDEN exception of the ill fated Lady Jane Grey were capable of great ruthlessness But perhaps Dr Castor if incorrect when she insinuates that Matilda was driven out of London because the people because the people did not want a woman ruler when it was in fact because of the steep taxes she had imposed on the citizens of London much as Margaret Thatcher finally lost power in 1990 after planning to impose a poll tax on the poorest in British societyThis collection focuses on relationships and politics and war as well as religion and society We get an understanding of what shaped a naive twelve year old child bride Isabel of France into a ruthless power player dubbed the she wolf who seized England together with her lover Roger Mortimer and possibly had her spouse Edward II put to death Of Isabel it was said No manver Spinal Trauma excited her resentment who did not perish under itsffect the king himself forming no Shadow (New Species, exception to this factMargaret of Anjou was one of the key and most aggressive players of the War of the Roses who would stop at nothing and cut down anything that stood in the way of the interests of her husband the timid and half mad Henry VI and her son Edouard Prince of WalesMary I Bloody Mary had hundreds of Protestants burned to try to reimpose Roman Catholicism back on England while Elizabeth I perhaps one of England s greatest monarchsngineered a religious settlement on England that was acceptable to most and led England against the invasion by Spain of the Spanish Armada I know I have the body of a weak and feeble woman but I have the heart of a king and king of England too Magnificent footage of castles palaces churches and landscapes in France and England Dr Castor is not only knowledgeable but is an 細味人生100篇 excellent narrator and presenter making this valuable insight for anyone with an interest in the history of the period At a time when English history is being down scaled in schools and universities in order not to offend certain groups the English children and young people are being robbed of a central part of their heritage and identity Series like these are welcome and refreshing For a rigorous non fiction history book this one s soasy to read that time flies by without notice and before you know you ve finished it Helen Castor is definitely one of those few academics who can narrate true facts from history as if it were a novel very amenable style and not dry at all despite the amount of informationAnd it s so The Gathering (Darkness Rising, enjoyable despite already being pretty fairly familiar with the women discussed in this book fourxtraordinary women who wielded royal power before the three Tudor ueens that count as Britain s first official female rulers on their own right Their names are Empress Matilda Eleanor of Auitaine Isabella of France and Margaret of Anjou and MongoDB each of them led a very tumultuous life as ueen of England or aspiring ueen Regnant in the case of the first and started rebellions and civil wars in defence of their rights or their children s to ruleOf those Matilda was the most interesting to me and the most tragic Castor makes a good case in demonstrating how her gender was so huge an obstacle that her throne was usurped by men unable to accept a female ruling over them in spite of solemn oaths taken to respect her father Henry I s bestowing of his crown on her as his heir but she doesn t stop at bemoaning the stupid oppressive patriarchy like I ve seen other scholars too focused on gender politics and political correctness do No instead Helen Castor also discusses how Matilda s own personal flaws and mistakes in judgment played a role in her never attaining the crown that was hers I very much appreciated this balance because there s nothing that annoys me than modern gender ideology retrospectively reinterpreting history to prove a pointAnother section that I was impressed with was the one dealing with Isabella of France Again a balanced study of the ueen and her husband as well Here Castor debunks accepted myths about Edward II like those related to his male favourites and the manner of his death to cite just twoxamples But unlike others she doesn t paint the king as someone simply misunderstood or slandered He wasn t competent and made plenty of mistakes full stop The sections dedicated to the lives of Eleanor and Margaret were the least interesting to me mostly because I already know both ueens perhaps a tad too well for an introductory type of biography to add anything really new to me I do love Eleanor s life story and Castor does a great summary of the key Chastity events in her longxistence But in the case of Margaret of Anjou there s also the additional detail that she s never been an intriguing person to read about for me unlike the other women I can t Experiential Learning even picture her as a tragic figure but rather as a political failure It doesn t help that she s the only one of the four ueens who didn t leave behind a legacy to justify in some measure all that spilt bloodIn sum this is anxcellent introductory history book very recommended for casual readers and those who want to know a bit about the real history behind the popular novels that have a non Tudor English ueen as a main character If I had to sum up the thesis of Helen Castor s book in one sentence it would be this Elizabeth I didn t come out of nowhere Elizabeth Tudor was the first woman to rule England in her own right but as Castor s book makes clear she was only able to wear the crown thanks to the Die Neurobiologie des Glücks efforts of several other women in England s history whoach in her own way paved the way for one of the most successful rulers in her country s history Castor takes us through the stories of several royal women starting in the Middle Ages and shows us how they successively got a little bit closer to the crown with Elizabeth I as the A Final Story: Science, Myth, and Beginnings end result Of course the heavy hitters like Eleanor of Auitaine and Mary I get lots of page space but Castor also takes time to delve into the lives and lasting influences of women who freuently get overlooked and dismissed by history as merely wife of insert historical man here In addition to the fascinating stories of how these women tried to gain power with mixed results Castor is alsoxploring the concept of ueenship what it means to be ueen as opposed to king and how that role grew and A New Philosophy of History evolved over time One of the most interesting parts for me was the discussion of how it was the ueen s job to publicly plead to the king for mercy on someone s behalf the king couldn t be viewed as weak so by indulging the ueen s feminine weakness he could pardon someone without losing face I also appreciated how Castor is not pulling her punches when it comes to showing just how badly the deck was stacked against women in power One of the funniest parts of the book while discussing two royal women fighting for control of the crown Castor uotes a commentator from the time who heavily criticized one woman for going against her feminine nature by seeking power while that same guy complimented her rival on how brave and tough and strong she was Elizabeth I is often held up as anxample of a strong independent woman who revolutionized the English monarchy and often lazy historians present her as the good sister in contrast to Bloody Mary whichugh but Castor s book makes it clear that Elizabeth was standing on the shoulders of dozens of women who came before her women who are often overshadowed by the stories of their husbands fathers brothers and sons By collecting their stories and presenting them as a long term Abortion, Choice, and Contemporary Fiction effort to change the way the English monarchy operated She Wolves shines a light on some key background players in England s history NERD ALERT This is the yardstick by which I measure all nonfiction Historians often sacrifice the human aspect their subject to detail dates timesconomics Lexikon der Medizin-Irrtümer etc They often overload you with information for no clear reason maybe to validate their amount of research Or they can go the opposite tack and leave you desperate for a year a town a battle dear god anything you can use as a frame of reference Helen Castor is not that type of historian She is a consummate storytelle 45 History buffs won t come across a finer book written as it captures the veryssence of four strong minded women Matilda Eleanor of Auitaine Isabella of France and Margaret of Anjou Brilliantly told with a considerable amount of detail Helen Castor relies heavily on well documented records to tell the story of how these FRITZI auf Sylt - ÖLMALEREI - Kunst in Fotobrillant-Druck exceptional women came forth by taking control tonsure the crown for their offspring Patience is reuired in several of the chapters as periodically there are too many characters introduced which have no real bearing on the actual stories But be prepared to be in awe of these four ueens and the strategies they undertake throughout their lives to achieve their goals and to take their well Big Little Man earned and much deserved place in history Highly recommended. The presumptions of male rule were not confronted soxplicitlyThe stories of these women told here in all their vivid humanity illustrate the paradox which the female heirs to the Tudor throne had no choice but to negotiate Man was the head of woman; and the king was the head of all How then could a woman be king how could royal power lie in female hand.

Epub online She Wolves BY Helen Castor – cogenlife.org

Had to re Readto get who is who straight againgeez4 12 Stars againNormally I will only read historical biographies when I m reading a book about a historical figure that I really don t know much about their backgroundonly that they fit in a certain period of time between such and such ueen or such and such King I find some of them historical figures very confusing and I still get them mixed upwhat can I say shrugs Now if the names back then weren t all the same it be a piece of cake at least for meSo I will pick up a book at the library that usually helps me outbut they are SO dry and I always skim just to get what I need But with Helen Castor s She Wolves I did not find it dry at all and I actually understood what was being said without still being confused No skimmingthe author not only filled in the blanks for me but she made it understandable AND interestingThis is a keeper for me to refer back to which I had to do again this monthNow I look forward to reading further books on the other women who ruled before Elizabeth I The Tutors I m ok with there I have them down pact No issues thereNowif Helen Castor could write about the Richards I may just get the hang of who was who And where and whenThere is hope for me yet This was supposed to be a uick note of thanks to the author but it morphed into a reviewfangirl sueeovershare Enjoy Or not Dear Dr CastorI just finished your wonderful book SHE WOLVES The Women Who Ruled England Before Elizabeth and had to write you to rave Also I m pretty annoyed at you because my book bill is about to go sky higher and frankly you might want to think about starting fundraisers for your readers because I doubt I m the only one with this problemI ve been into the Tudors for years specially Henry VIII and his wives long before Showtime cast a slender brunette of medium height to play Henry I read Creating Lasting Value everything about them I could find andventually started to get Tudor Understanding Markets and Strategy ed out there were only so many takes on Ann Boleyn s fall and Henry s growing sociopathy and waistline before I needed a break So I started reading about the gang who came before Henry VI Edward IV Richard III and the Wars of the Roses which is how I discovered Margaret of Anjou In a word whoa It s wrong that I want to see her and Elizabeth I in a cage match right I couldn t believe the woman s courage audacity determination and focus So I started reading books about the Wars specifically to find out about Margaret though I also loved reading about Warwick losing his hit when King Edward had the audacity to a choose his own ueen and b be king Which is how Inded up with SHE WOLVESI m Montana Dreams embarrassed to say it sat in my TBR pile for a year It wasn tntirely my fault my ldest started college which I dealt with by re reading all her favorite YA novels Remember reading the last Harry Potter book I remember you wouldn t let me near it until you finished it Mom you harpy Oh the memories and I got hooked on WORKAHOLICS which is a terrible American comedy that is my walk of shame Then I went through a graphic novel phase All right another graphic novel phase I go through about four a year Don t judge me Then Philippa Gregory s THE WHITE UEEN hit TV and reminded me how much I loved learning about the House of York whose tenacity and courage was only xceeded by their inability to not devour Modern South Asia each otherOnce the TV show had run its course I remembered there was another kind of TV books And there was SHE WOLVES where it had held pride of place on my bookshelf for a year nestled snugly beside Stephen King s DR SLEEP and back issues of Fine Cooking magazine I highly recommend the grilling issue When I picked up SHE WOLVES I was tempted to start at thend with Margaret s story since she was the reason I bought the book in the first place Then I thought well Dr Castor is probably going somewhere with Matilda and Eleanor of Auitaine and Isabella of France I m Picture Theory embarrassed to admit I only knew of Eleanor from being played by Glenn Close in a remake and the only royal Isabella I knew of was Catherine of Aragon s mother and the only famous Matilda I knew of was from Roald Dahl s book I ve got to stop telling you things I mmbarrassed about I need to keep my humiliation to myself Their stories I figured might be relevant to Margaret s or why Ancestral Voices else would you include them On the other hand why would you do any of the things you do I don t know you You could be annigma Or a Tory They still have those in England right So maybe you had a plan when you included ueens who weren t Margaret Or maybe you didn t I had nothing to go on and in the And Bid Him Sing end I figured if their stories didn t grab me I d just skip to MargaretWhich brings me to my increasing book budget since of course you made Matilda and Eleanor and Isabella pretty much leap off the page a good trick in those medieval gowns By the time you got to the White Ship disaster I was hooked and that was only page 26 Of all the dumb ways for Henry I to lose his heir The guy conuered Normandy but lost his son when a bunch of drunks tried to steer a ship through a rock which was probably the twelfth centuryuivalent of losing your kid to a party bus crash All that before we Aristotle Detective (Aristotle even got to Matilda who proved that her father didn t just pass the badass gene to his son And then Eleanor of Auitaine History should just rename her Eleanor Never To Be Messed With and get it over with She makes pretty muchveryone who wasn t ueen of at least two countries look like a slack ass ueen of France Sure but not Bones, Clones, and Biomes enough of a challenge Also the king of France was great if you like amiableunuchs which she didn t so buh bye King Louis ueen of England Sure why not she got all her ueen practice out of the way in France Oh the king of England would like his line to continue Sure Eleanor says here are five sons and three daughters Go nuts Eleanor was on board with pretty much Bringing the Empire Home everything King Henry II needed done as long as she didn t have to choose between her sons and her husband Oh Whoops Well at least she didn t have to pay the price by being imprisoned for over aoh Whoops But then Henry known throughout history as King Grouchypants was kindnough to die of a fever leaving his son Richard in charge King Richard made Son Of The Century by basically saying Mom I gotta go force my religion on people I ve never met who ve never done me any harm so heeeeere s England Have fun running the place The Crusade thing was annoying but as a mom I appreciated his no really my mom can have whatever she wants including England so stop bugging me because I have to go repress another culture attitude Eleanor did in her last decade than I ve done in three which I should resent but mostly I just admire Then Isabella married to a paranoid crybaby who held grudges like dragons store treasure a guy who had no interest in letting his wife into his man cave figuratively as well as literally Nightmare Isabella of France should be studied and admired solely for not strangling Edward II before their first anniversary I know the movie BRAVEHEART is riddled with inaccuracy but whenever I picture Edward II I picture the weasel face actor who played him and I just want to punch things Things like his face Also Isabella of France should be renamed Isabella of Awesome So Isabella of Awesome got to watch her husbandking do the medieval uivalent of passing notes in class to a guy he had a crush on xcept instead of passing notes he was passing tons of land and money and titles But at least Piers Gaveston King Weasel Face s man crush was mature and dignified and didn t use his influence toyeah I can t finish that sentence without giggling But then Piers bit the big one courtesy of the medieval Building the Cold War euivalent of high school teachers cracking down on kids passing notes they ran him through and cut off his head That would teach King Edward II to pass notes Except it didn t ueen Isabella decided deja vu all over again wasn t acceptable so she put on the medievaluivalent of big girl panties and deposed King Weasel Face and arranged a nasty death for Hugh Despenser or as I call him Piers Gaveston 20 and if she d stopped there it would have been terrific but if she d stopped there she wouldn t be Isabella Stomper of Weasel Face She went too far and had her ass handed to her politely but lived to tell the tale The worst thing I can say about her is that she shouldn t have been surprised to find Edward III was his mother s son Finally the reason I bought your book Margaret of Anjou By then my wish list had increased by 12 books damn you Dr Castor and I hadn t Canadian Art, Volume 1 (A-F) even finished SHE WOLVES And yep by then I d realized you had a plan when you told Matilda Eleanor and Isabella s stories first becauseven I with my American high school Counter-Amores education lack of college and gross amount of TV watching Do they have Game of Thrones in England It s terrific could see the parallels in their lives As a fan of watching medieval royal houses pretty muchat Dancing at Armageddon each other I loved Margaret s story As a mom I ached for her when the one time she let her son leave her side and fight he died In battle fighting for his father s crown if that comforted her It wouldn t have comforted me but I wouldn t have lasted a week in any of their courts There s a reason there isn t a book called SHE BITCH Why MaryJanice Davidson Should Never Have Been Allowed To Write Which brings me towell me I m fortunatenough to be published most of my books are romantic comedy and paranormal chick lit and I threw some YA books in there too for the heck of it When I m on deadline I like to read the opposite of what I m writing So I d ask myself what is the literary opposite of a fluffy romantic comedy where Double Jeopardy everything works out perfectly for the feisty heroinemedieval English history Emphasis on ueens in a primitive patriarchy where you could get put to death for picking your nose in church Where often nothing. When Edward VI Henry VIII’s longed for son died in 1553xtraordinarily there was no one left to claim the title King of England For the first time all the contenders for the crown were femaleIn 1553 England was about to xperience the ‘monstrous regiment’ the unnatural rule of a woman But female rule in England also had a past Four hundred years be.

Worked out and if you got a splinter it sometimes killed you Perfect Which is how I started with the Tudors and a decade later found SHE WOLVES All that to say your book was wonderful and I m assuming you are too I ve got BLOOD AND ROSES on the way via and I have my fingers crossed you re taking a break from writing another wonderful book to read this Scratch that I hope you re taking a break from finishing another wonderful book Like reading the galleys finished It s about to be published finished Because I m hooked and I ve got to have You showed me an ntire area of history I d willfully ignored for years I m kind of hoping you ll be able to teach me trigonometry next Many many many thanks Warmest regards MaryJanice DavidsonwwwmaryjanicedavidsonnetUNDEAD AND UNWARY October 2014 I borrowed this book from the library about a lifetime ago So I really should be taking it back But once you reach the max finereally what s the incentive The hold up was that I couldn t get into it It s not that the subject isn t interesting because I dare you to find something boring about Eleanor of Auitaine Double Dog Dare The problem was the writing The first parts of the book were pretty much recitations of facts and happenings with very little analysis She covers Matilda Eleanor of Auitaine Isabella of France Margaret of Anjou and Mary Tudor And wow did she skimp on Mary Tudor I admit she wasn t ueen for long but she deserved a few pages at least It wasn t until she started comparing and Cezanne and Provence explaining how these women fit together and set the stage for Elizabeth perhaps influencing her that the author s passion came out But those few pages simply can t make a book that drags along like a barge through muddy water It s a fine read if you have nothing better but you d be better off just picking out five biographies and then reading a good one on Elizabeth 455Over the years for one reason or another I ve picked up a hell of a lot of English history through inadvertent measures The Tudors and the Borgias are the two families I ve studied on an amateur level since grade school and a systematic repetition of Shakespeare at various levels ofducation and varied modes of Dark Voices entertainment has built up an instinctive recognition of names and plots that for all the 16th 17th century fanfiction treatment still serves me well My story is not unusual for one born and bred in the military industrial complex inheritor of the most ubiuitous colonial monstrosity and the fact thatveryone in the stories looks like me only Contested Reproduction explains the sticking of stories to my inherent recallven Individual bits of truth then are not the pieces of worth in this field of knowledge although the histories this work churns through has been such a fortuitous boon in my hardcore current study of ChaucerShakespearean TragedyAustenEliotEvans that fickle fortune must indeed be contemplatedThe English ueen is dead Long live the ueen What s to be done now is to look at all this prescriptive junk that s built up over centuries of land murder betrayal popularity contests drowning heterosexual fertility non heteronormativity the word of God the word of Fate and plain and simple incompetence We could ve had a golden age far closer to Henry I and II than Henry VIII had a certain uncle not thrust his way into the limelight There may have been a line of names that drowned Shakespeare s she wolf in its own fear of backlash had a certain fool son not gone and gotten himself killed The King is always male because that is how the dice happened to fall That s it Add in a little superstition always the driving force of bigotry when sanctity of rule is made to hinge on color and skin and what lies between a person s legs and of course you re going to get a certain type of malodorous conspiracy that demands incestuous begetting by reason of its previously successful incestuous history It s not actually that successful of course when one looks at the sheer number of Henrys that just sat on the throne and failed but that s not what they re going to teach you in schoolWith regards to the narratological aspects of this work I like Castor s style Between the mounds of unavoidably androcentric history there s a very keen picking apart of just what was keeping Matilda and Eleanor and Isabella and Margaret from that Elizabeth level undeniable proof in the history books In some lives the gynephobic rules of ruling had not yet firmly Divided by Color (American Politics and Political Economy Series) established themselves in the sociopolitical and religious contests and what ultimately decided the fallout was a matter of speed andase of conformity In others female despots are still despots and the only difference between one successful revolution and the other is how nasty the historians are going to be about the usurper who had a womb Looking back on the facts and the formulas that are the cause and conseuence of any history of power I can now appreciate just how much unorthodox spitting in the patriarchal Creating Country Music eye had to go on before Elizabeth could become Elizabeth the First If she didn t closely analyze the previous English histories of women coming to power and learn fromvery one I ll Blacklands eat my hatThis is why history is so much fun Between the learn or you are doomed to repeat and those on top wantingxactly that you have the liminal realm where seemingly irrefutable states of being haven t yet had the time to become Evolutionary Patterns established The King rules because of this The ueen doesn t rule because of that We do this because of this We don t do this because of that All very cute those ways of following but time waits for no indoctrination for the sake of inoculation To those who disagree I ll see you on the other side She was not bound they said by any of England s laws since the Conuest and could therefore choose to sweep away thentire apparatus of the Reformation at will because all previous statutes had been made in the name of England s king while its ueen was nowhere mentioned Description When Edward VI Henry VIII s longed for son died in 1553 Evolution As Entropy extraordinarily there was no one left to claim the title King of England For the first time all the contenders for the crown were femaleIn 1553 England was about toxperience the monstrous regiment the unnatural rule of a woman But female rule in England also had a past Four hundred years before Edward s death Matilda daughter of Henry I and granddaughter of William the Conuerer came tantalisingly close to securing her hold on the power of the crown And between the 12th and the 15th centuries three Forging Gay Identities exceptional women Eleanor of Auitaine Isabella of France and Margaret of Anjou discovered as ueens consort and dowager how much was possible if the presumptions of male rule were not confronted soxplicitlyThe stories of these women told here in all their vivid humanity illustrate the paradox which the female heirs to the Tudor throne had no choice but to negotiate Man was the head of woman and the king was the head of all How then could a woman be king how could royal power lie in female hands Opening The boy in the bed was just fifteen years old He had been handsome perhaps Forbidden History even recently but now his face was swollen and disfigured by disease and by the treatments his doctors had prescribed in the attempt to ward off its ravages Their failure could no longer be mistaken The hollow greyyes were ringed with red and the livid skin once fashionably translucent was blotched with sores The harrowing bloody cough which for months had been Fiche Blian ag Fás exhaustingly relentless suddenly seemed frightening still by its absenceach shallow breath now Esteem Enlivened by Desire exacted a perceptible physical cost PART I MATILDA Lady of England 1102 1167 On 1 December 1135 another king of England lay dying Not a boy but a man of nearly seventy Henry I had ruled the English people for than half his lifetime A bull like figure stocky and powerfully muscular Henry was a commanding leader the greatest of kings according to the chronicler Orderic Vitalis who observed his rule admiringly from the cloisters of a Norman monastery A Surfeit of LampreysThe White Ship Henry I s son and heir William drownedPART 2 ELEANOR An Incomparable Woman 1124 1204 A casual observer at Henry II s court in September 1166 might have been forgiven for thinking that Eleanor of Auitaine was the most conventional of ueens A great heiress famed for her beauty and her agile mind she had brought her royal husband a rich inheritance that stretched from the green valleys of the Vienne river where soft light danced on stately water as it flowed toward the Loire to the foothills of the Pyrenees where a stronger sun struck towering crags of granite and limestoneAt left a 14th century representation of the wedding of Louis and Eleanor at right Louis leaving on CrusadeOne of the most significant acts for political history was the divorce of Louis VII of France and Eleanor of Auitaine in the 1150sPART 3 ISABELLA Iron Lady 1295 1358 It was a cold day in Boulogne 25 January 1308 when two of Eleanor s descendants met in the cathedral church of Our Lady toxchange their wedding vows The bridegroom King Edward II of England great grandson of Eleanor s son John was a tall and handsome figure powerfully built and gorgeously dressed PART IV MARGARET A Great and Strong Laboured Woman 1430 1482 Margaret of Anjou was not born to be a ueen It was not that she lacked royal blood flowing through her veins she was directly descended after all from Philippe of Valois the king who had succeeded to the French throne after the deaths of Isabella s brothers Like Isabella herself she could trace her line back to Eleanor of Auitaine and the Empress MatildaNONFIC NOVEMBER 2015CR White Mughals5 A History of England from the Tudors to the Stuarts3 Rome and the Barbarians4 Field Notes From A Hidden City3 The King s Jews Money Massacre and Exodus in Medieval EnglandCR A History of Palestine 634 10993 Charlotte Bront A Life3 The Alh. Fore Edward’s death Matilda daughter of Henry I and granddaughter of William the Conuerer came tantalisingly close to securing her hold on the power of the crown And between the 12th and the 15th centuries three xceptional women Eleanor of Auitaine Isabella of France and Margaret of Anjou discovered as ueens consort and dowager how much was possible if.

Helen Castor is a historian of medieval England and a Fellow of Sidney Sussex College Cambridge She directed studies in History at Sidney for eight years before deciding to concentrate on writing history for a wider readership Her book Blood & Roses Faber 2004 published in revised form in the US by HarperCollins 2006 is a biography of the fifteenth century Paston family whose letters are