by Natasha Siegel
Publication Date March 14, 2023
Published by Random House Publishing Group
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Genres: Fiction / Historical / Medieval, Fiction / Romance / Historical / Medieval, Fiction / Romance / LGBTQ+ / Gay
Reading Challenges: Historical Fiction Reading Challenge 2023
***I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.***
“Absolutely captivating and wonderfully romantic . . . I didn’t want to put this book down, even when it had ended.”—Rainbow Rowell, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Simon Snow Trilogy
“These two kings will wreck your heart.”—Heather Walter, author of Malice
Two destined rivals fall desperately in love—but the fate of medieval Europe hangs in the balance.
Twelfth-century Europe. Newly crowned King Philip of France is determined to restore his nation to its former empire and bring glory to his name. But when his greatest enemy, King Henry of England, threatens to end his reign before it can even begin, Philip is forced to make a precarious alliance with Henry’s volatile son—risking both his throne, and his heart.
Richard, Duke of Aquitaine, never thought he would be king. But when an unexpected tragedy makes him heir to England’s royal seat, he finally has an opportunity to overthrow the father he despises. At first, Philip is a useful tool in his quest for vengeance . . . until passion and politics collide, and Richard begins to question whether the crown is worth the cost.
When Philip and Richard find themselves staring down an impending war, they must choose between their desire for each other and their grand ambitions. Will their love prevail if it calls to them from across the battlefield? Teeming with royal intrigue and betrayal, this epic romance reimagines two real-life kings ensnared by an impossible choice: Follow their hearts, or earn their place in history.
Solomon’s Crown by Natasha Siegel is a historical fiction novel set in Europe in medieval times. It’s more of an alternate history of King Phillip of France and the Duke of Aquitaine, Richard, and their alliance to overthrow King Henry.
Set in twelfth-century Europe, King Phillip of France recently ascended the throne after his father died when he was only 16. His main enemy is King Henry of England, who wants to take his lands and end his reign as king. Phillip must decide if he can trust King Henry’s son, Richard, Duke of Aquitaine, to form an alliance with him to take down King Henry.
Richard never planned to be king of England, but when he suddenly becomes the heir to the throne, he wants to overthrow his father and become the King of England. He decides he can use King Phillip to help him in his quest to become king.
Phillip and Richard have an unexpected and strong connection that only grows over time. Now they must decide whether to trust each other or keep moving toward their own separate ambitions.
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this story. I don’t know much about this time in history, and I wanted to learn more. The author is very clear in the forward as well as her notes in the end, that this is not based on historical fact, but is an alternate history that is based on historical fact.
The author spent some time at the beginning of the book describing the scene and the history of Philip and Richard, and this slowed the beginning of the story. However, once the story got going, it went much faster and I enjoyed Richard and Phillips’s story. It’s a violent and turbulent time, and both Richard and Phillip have huge responsibilities and ambitions. They find solace in each other as outside of their lives is a world full of uncertainty and danger.
The author did a wonderful job of re-imagining this time in history, with a beautiful romance that felt authentic while reminding us of the genuine perils and the many betrayals of the time period.
I highly recommend Solomon’s Crown to anyone who enjoys historical fiction.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Solomon’s Crown counts toward my Historical Fiction Reading Challenge 2023
Have you read Solomon’s Crown?
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- Historical Fiction Reading Challenge 2023
Great review. This sounds good!
This book is totally new to me. I like that it’s an alternate history. Wonderful review Wendy.
I haven’t read many books set in medieval times. Glad to hear you enjoyed the story!
I can see you had a great time with this one. Great review.
Sounds like you really enjoyed this one Wendy! Wonderful review!📚💜
Good review, Wendy!
Nice review, Wendy. I’m glad you enjoyed this one.
This sounds like a wonderful story. I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it. Lovely review Wendy!
I’m not familiar with history of Philip and Richard. This sounds interesting and well written. Amazing review!
I’m not a history buff, but this time period has always interested me. Glad you enjoyed it, Wendy!
I’m glad that you enjoyed this one Wendy. It’s on my TBR too
This sounds like something I would very much enjoy. And in terms of time period, one that like you I know little about. Thanks for highlighting this one, Wendy 🙂
It was very well written and I knew nothing about that time period and still enjoyed the book
Sounds interesting, and another one for your challenge, great review 😊
My historical challenge is doing really well
British royalty has had a turbulent history. This “alternate history” sounds like it makes good use of the rise and fall of kings and the battles that accompanied their determination for power. I’m glad you liked it.
Yes, you’re right, Linda.
Just seeing that Heather Walter blurbed this book makes me want to read it, since I loved her Malice duology! I’m a sucker for a queer love story, and while I’m not usually big on historical fiction (especially regarding royalty), this sounds like it’s pretty wonderful. Thanks for sharing your review!
It’s not my usual type of book, but I enjoyed it so much!
I’m glad that you enjoyed this book Wendy! Thanks for sharing your review.
Thank you, Jodie!