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Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Sharon Kay Penman- The Land Beyond The Sea ~ long awaited novel~ Pre-order yours now!

I was delighted to obtain an ARC from Edelweiss of Sharon Kay Penman's long awaited novel on Outremer, or the Kingdom of Jerusalem. This "Land Beyond the Sea"began to be settled in 1099 with the First Crusade.

A very fine historical representation of an era and point in time very different from what was happening in France, Normandy and England at that time. Baldwin IV , who has been called the "Leper King" was son of the King of Jerusalem Amalric I, and was educated by William, Archbishop of Tyre.

Baldwin had childhood symptoms of his disease before puberty and when his father died in 1174 he divulged it to his Curia Regis on his deathbed. Kingship of Jerusalem was partially hereditary and partially who approved Baldwin, who diagnosis was unclear at that time to be crowned at 13.

As he was not expected to live long, due to his illness the Barons who guided him and his Regents jockeyed for power of him and his sister Sybilla and half sister Isabella. He served valiantly for more years than expected and died in 1185.

He had married his sister to Guy of Lusignan, who was crowned king and later deposed, giving succession to Baldwin V his nephew. When that child king died Guy and Sybilla came to power.

Although not a time period I understand or always enjoy reading about, it was a fine read.

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