Sunday, May 15, 2011

Richard III-Fall from Grace

I read the first and last book of this series, I could not find the second

one. These books were interesting because they went opposite of the book I read by Alison Weir about the Prince in the Tower. Alison Weir believed, along with Thomas More and Shakespeare, that Richard III had killed his two nephews in the Tower in order to reign. I never knew quite what to believe, but after reading these two books about Richard and his life, I now think that he was innocent. He was the third son and was darker in appearance than his other brothers, and more quiet and scared. His life required that he grow up fast, and become a skilled fighter.

When his older brother Edward became King, he was loyal to him and served him to the best of his ability. He never loved war or to fight, he was afraid. While growing up at Court, he met Anne Neville when he was 9 and she was 7. She was the daughter of Warwick the Kingmaker. Warwick her father is the one who helped put Edward on the throne of England. Richard is soon in between a lot of tough spots. Since he loves Anne he wants to support her father Warwick, but at times this would put him against his brother King Edward. He is also constantly in between his brothers Edward and George, trying to get them to get along. George his brother is always committing treason or turning his coat, meaning he will join whichever side that is winning. Eventually he is killed for his treason. Richard is the soft one of the brothers, always desiring for peace and justice.

Upon his brother Edward's death, he is to serve as Protector until his nephews come of age. During this tumultuous time, Edward's widow Bess tries to take the throne. Richard becomes King for the people, he fills he needs to to fulfill his dead brother's wishes. He also feels it his responsibility to protect the realm from Bess and the Woodvilles. In taking the throne, he now puts his wife Anne and his son Ned at risk for plots. He never wanted the throne, but did for the peace of the realm. Through his short reign, less than two years, he passes many laws that favor justice for all people, whether they be rich or poor. He does not accept bribery in courts, or people to hold those high positions that aren't worthy of them. Although his ideas aren't popular with the people, they show what a nice King Richard was. He continually fights for the rights of the poor, and for their voices to be heard.

Henry Tudor, a bastard from Margaret Beaufort, lands in England from France to fight for the throne. Richard knows this battle will be the death of one of them, and that it must end now. These books are exciting and very detailed; you feel like you really get to know Richard from childhood to adulthood. You get to see his love for Anne and how it prevails. It opened my eyes to another side of the story that could be possible. It made me think perhaps his nephews were killed by someone else, because Richard didn't have the heart. I think it was possibly Buckingham, because he turned on Richard. Or even Henry Tudor when he gained the throne. If you are interested in the York and Plantagenet time and turmoil, these books are very interesting. I did not read the second one in the series, but I knew enough to know what happened during that time. Watch for a rather disturbing love scene in the first book; besides that it is mostly war scenes and no swearing.

No comments:

Post a Comment