6 journalers for this copy...
Uniquelu skilled at collecting, raising and nurturing plants, his practical good sense make shima n invaluable servant, as he scours the known world for new adn beautiful species, and penetrates the most secret activities at court. Here both King Charles I and Tradescant are in thrall to the irresistible Duke of Buckingham, the most powerful man in England.
Tradescant ahs always been faithful to his masters, but Buckingham is unlike any he's ever known: flamboyant, outrageously charming, utterly reckless. the court may love him but the people hate him. Every certainty upon which Tradescant has based his life is challenged as his personal world is turned upside down while all around him the country slides towards civil war.
I found this a fascinating read - not knowing much of the period, the historical aspect really gripped me.
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Sending to Noumena12 for the relay forums New Book For A New Year Game.
Hope you enjoy it!
John is in the employ of Robert Cecil, building the gardens of Hatfield House and he is very close – a confidante and friend – to the great man. John loves travelling the world in search of new species of plants. After Cecil dies, John moves around from master to master until he is ordered to the new and fabulous estate of George Villiers – first Duke of Buckingham, the most powerful man in the land. The Duke of Buckingham becomes the lover of Charles I. John is a product of his times and loyalty is everything. John ends up loving his new master. John's personal life is turned upside down by this charismatic and reckless and hated person.
Gregory has written a brilliant novel about this period just before civil war. Definitely another winner from Gregory!
After his Lord dies, John is put under the service of the Duke of Buckingham who is a beautiful man and a favourite to the King and Prince. John follows every order from Buckingham, including when he is sent away from home to do his bidding and find new plants. Buckingham calls for John more and more often, and John adores him more each time he is called. Elizabeth wants this to end but John can't put her before his master.
This is the first Philippa Gregory book I've read and I really enjoyed it. She perfectly brings to life that time frame and gives characters that weren't necessarily historical figures a life of their own. John Tradescant really was a gardener to the Duke, and through Gregory's eyes and some small facts known about him, he is brought to life, which makes for a page turning read. There's a sequel to this book which I'm looking forward to reading!
Enjoyed very much the history around this novel - the journey of plants that ended up in these great gardens and the care that had to be taken to transport them from the country of origin to England.