As King Henry VI slips into insanity and the realm of England teeters on the brink of civil war, a child is married to the mad king’s brother. Edmund Tudor, Earl of Richmond, takes his child bride into Wales where she discovers a land of strife and strangers.
At Caldicot Castle and Lamphey Palace Margaret must put aside childhood, acquire the dignity of a Countess and, despite her tender years, produce Richmond with a son and heir.
While Edmund battles to restore the king’s peace, Margaret quietly supports his quest; but it is a quest fraught with danger.
As the friction between York and Lancaster intensifies 14-year-old Margaret, now widowed, turns for protection to her brother-in-law, Jasper Tudor. At his stronghold in Pembroke, two months after her husband’s death, Margaret gives birth to a son whom she names Henry, after her cousin the king.
Margaret is small of stature but her tiny frame conceals a fierce and loyal heart and a determination that will not falter until her son’s destiny as the king of England is secured. The Beaufort Bride traces Margaret’s early years from her nursery days at Bletsoe Castle to the birth of her only son in 1457 at Pembroke Castle.
Judith Arnopp’s novel, The Beaufort Bride, follows the early years of Margaret Beaufort. A woman usually depicted in an unfavorable light in fiction, Arnopp’s Margaret brings humanity and courage to this historical figure.
The Beaufort Bride is, at heart, a coming of age story. Little is known about Margaret’s early life, but Arnopp portrays her as a mature, clever girl who realizes her weighty responsibility and her status as a pawn for powerful players of the era. The tale is at once a tender love story, a tragedy, and an historical thriller. Margaret’s early years are fraught with heartache and danger, and Arnopp details the political intrigues and machinations of the day brilliantly.
The Beaufort Bride is a stunning, memorable tale that gives the reader a glimpse into the youth of the Tudor matriarch.