Title: The Lady in the Tower
Author: Marie-Louise Jensen
Published: 1st January 2009
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Genre: History, Romance
Rating: ***** (5/5 Stars)
About: Spring 1540. Eleanor’s mother is imprisoned in the Lady Tower after a terrible accusation. For four years Eleanor’s only comfort has been their secret notes to one another. But then a chance discovery reveals a plot to murder her mother and Eleanor must free her before it is too late.
Review: This is a historical fiction book aimed towards younger readers, but it is still one of my favourite books to re-read. This story entails the imprisonment of Lady Elizabeth Hungerford in the Tower at Farleigh Castle. The author, Marie-Louise Jensen, loosely bases this text on historical fact, whilst putting her own spin on the mysterious events that occurred during the time that the book was written.
Although the author’s language is aimed at younger readers, I still find this text enjoyable to read. It combines my love for history with some romance, heartbreak and although at times it was a bit predictable, the outcome for all the characters was successful.
Marie-Louise Jensen describes a youthful rebellious girl who at times, acts without thinking, but the character of the young Eleanor is a likable character. One that we see grow up into a fine young lady, who defies the laws that were restricting women at the time. This is done by her bold action of taking part in the jousting competition and competing against her love interest, Lord Stanton, although this is done in secret it does lead to one of the most memorable scenes in the book.
We become fully involved with all the characters that are described in the book, loving those and hating others. They are remarkable well described and it is easier to imagine the lives they lead without having to go into too much back story. The one set back that I must admit that this book has it the fact that it is never explained fully why Eleanor’s father locked her mother up. There are some theories that can be thought up about what they are and in some ways this can be seen as a positive for the book as it allows the reader to play a part in the text. On the other hand, it is the only detail in the book that I wished had been delved into further.
I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who is looking for an easy and an enjoyable read. It is at times a laugh out loud, tear jerking and at times a gripping tale of a young girl growing up into young woman with a fiery spirit and a faithful bond to her mother, that leads her to plot for their escape from their imprisonment to her father and Lady Elizabeth’s husband.
My warmest congratulations to Marie-Louise Jensen for writing one of my all time favourite books.