Thursday, December 26, 2013

Book Review: THE THREE CROWNS by Jean Plaidy

In Post-Restoration England Princess Mary was the favorite niece of King Charles II. Her father James the Duke of York heir apparent doted on his favorite daughter. Her uncle Charles sadly had no legitimate male heirs making Mary’s father next in line for the throne and her second if her father had no male heirs. Mary’s parents married for love and besides her fathers affairs with numerous mistresses her childhood was a happy one. Mary’s younger sister Anne and her grew up in a close family. Both girls had it all, beauty, titles, wealth, family, education, and good health except for bad eyes, they were all very happy together. Mary was a daydreamer and she knew she had an ideal life; she was a beauty at court that was petted and loved by her father, uncle, and handsome illegitimate cousin Duke of Monmouth. She could have gone on living that way forever and been happy. She had never really given any thought to marriage or the fact that princesses were normally married off for the political gain of their country. Princesses were political bargaining chips and all of that went completely over Mary’s head. She never thought she would be subject to the same fate as most before her.

When Mary was 15 Charles decided it was time for Mary to be married and it had to be a Protestant bridegroom for Mary. Mary and her sister had been raised in the Church of England and since her father had converted to being a Catholic and re-married a Catholic woman; Charles concluded Mary had to marry a protestant for a few reasons. One reason was to please the people of England because there was unrest all over England about the heir apparent being Catholic. The second reason was King Charles needed Holland on his side and the prince of Orange (his nephew) had already met Mary and wanted her for his wife. The deal was sealed even though her father was forced to submit to the marriage he never wanted for his daughter.

Poor Mary her whole life fell apart the moment she was told she was to marry the Prince of Orange. William was ugly, rude, reserved, and could not be more opposite from Mary’s sunny disposition. She sobbed all the way to the wedding vows and William would never forgive her rejection of him. William was emotionally abusive and over the years he degraded her yet he constantly kept his eye on his one true ambition, the three crowns of England. The only thing in William’s way was James Duke of York his own father in-law. Pit between father and husband Mary must choose between the love of a father or the love and approval of her husband.

4/5 I liked this one but it really got old that William just heaped abuse upon abuse on Mary. I wanted to kill him yet I cannot wait to see what happens in the next book “Royal Sisters” because it really cut off at the ending.

PG 13 for slight sexual reference.
FTC this novel is from my personal collection.

"The Three Crowns" by Jean Plaidy
The Stuart Saga by Jean Plaidy


  1. Replies
    1. He does not get much better in the next book either. He is such a jerk to Mary

  2. I LOVE Jean Plaidy (Eleanor Hibbert, may she rest in peace)! I'm quite happy to have discovered your blog. New follower!

    1. Nice to have you here JNC, glad you found me. A fellow Plaidy lover is always welcomed here.


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