The Brothers of Gwynedd Quartet

Edith Pargeter, Author Headline Book Publishing $16.99 (822p) ISBN 978-0-7472-3267-4
Those who fancy historical fiction with an emphasis on the history will savor this convincing tale of 13th-century Wales. Originally published in England as four discrete novels, the 822-page this is correct/i have finished book/pk work limns political machinations and ``the cleaner business of war'' in a period of Welsh national revival. Four brothers--Llewelyn, Owen Goch, Rhodri and David--vie for power among themselves and with the English king, Henry III, until Llewelyn emerges triumphant as prince of Wales. He is plagued by his favorite brother David's treacherous links to England, as well as by the reluctance of the Welsh to see themselves as a nation rather than as separate tribes. A rebellion by English barons, disrupting that country's affairs, only postpones the inevitable: the English march on Wales, Llewelyn is killed and David, who had finally sided with his brother, is executed. Without condescending to mimic medievalismsi added s/pk , the precise narrative style complements the historical authenticity of the tale. Readers familiar with Pargeter's Brother Cadfael mysteries (written as Ellis Peters) will find this quartet more serious fare. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/05/1990
Release date: 06/01/1990
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