Monday 5 February 2024

πŸ“– Book Review ~ The King's Witch by Tracy Borman


Hodder & Stoughton

Frances Gorges Trilogy #1

My thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book

As she helps to nurse the dying Queen Elizabeth, Frances Gorges longs for the fields and ancient woods of her parents' Hampshire estate, where she has learned to use the flowers and herbs to become a much-loved healer.Frances is happy to stay in her beloved countryside when the new King arrives from Scotland, bringing change, fear and suspicion. His court may be shockingly decadent, but James's religion is Puritan, intolerant of all the old ways; he has already put to death many men for treason and women for witchcraft.So when her ambitious uncle forcibly brings Frances to court, she is trapped in a claustrophobic world of intrigue and betrayal - and a ready target for the twisted scheming of Lord Cecil, the King's first minister.Surrounded by mortal dangers, Frances finds happiness only with the precocious young Princess Elizabeth, and Tom Wintour, the one courtier she can trust. Or can she?'

πŸ“–My Review..

An Elizabethan at heart, Frances Gorges is forced to spend time at the Jacobean court of King James I. Much preferring to spend time in her herb garden at her home in  Hampshire, Frances feels claustrophobic at the court at Whitehall and her role as lady-in-waiting to the young Princess Elizabeth places her very firmly at the heart of intrigue. Her growing friendship with the enigmatic courtier Tom Wintour will place Frances in a very precarious position and her skill with healing brings her into dangerous contact with the King as he continues his quest to rid England of its multitude of witches.

I’m a bit late to the party with this one as, I’m sorry to say, it has languished on my Kindle since its publication but I’m really pleased to have discovered the story now. Beautifully written and meticulously researched, this is the first in a trilogy of novels which feature this bold and feisty heroine. I enjoyed getting to know Frances Gorges in this first book which sets the scene and brings to life the dangerous, and decadent, Jacobean court. Placing the book very firmly at the start of the reign of James I will allow the series to progress and I especially enjoyed learning more about the Gunpowder Plot which features very strongly in The King's Witch.

Looking forward to completing the trilogy:


Tracy Borman is a historian and author from Scothern, Lincolnshire, England. She is most widely known as the author of Elizabeth's Women, a portrait-gallery of the powerful women who influenced Queen Elizabeth I. In July 2022 Borman was made Chancellor of Bishop Grosseteste University in Lincoln.

Twitter / X @tracyborman


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