Hi. Jo Beverley here delighted to welcome Margaret Evans Porter back to the Word Wenches. Margaret is an award-winning, bestselling novelist with a life-long interest in British history, and she generously shares her investigations.
Today she's blogging about Hampton Court Palace, one of the royal palaces. It plays a part in her first mainstream historical novel, A Pledge of Better Times. "A sweeping tale of ambition, treachery, and passion For generations Lady Diana de Vere’s family loyally served England’s crown. But after King Charles II’s untimely death, her father firmly opposes James II’s tyranny. Charles Beauclerk, Duke of St. Albans—the late king’s bastard son by actress Nell Gwyn—also rebels against his newly crowned uncle’s manipulation.
Political and religious turmoil bring revolution and yet another coronation before Charles returns to from war to claim his promised bride. In palace corridors and within their own household the young duke and duchess confront betrayals, scandals, and tragedies that threaten to divide them. And neither the privileges of birth nor proximity to the throne can ensure their security, their advancement—or their happiness."
Margaret Evans Porter.
As a teenager, entirely unaware of the impact it would have upon my future, I spent a full day Hampton Court Palace. On that initial visit I had my pocket journal, and at some point I recorded my thoughts my chief impression: “Never has history seemed so alive to me.” I was very much taken with the gardens. “I think every flower is in bloom. The roses are as big as my face.” Lunch was a picnic on the grass. I got lost in the maze—temporarily.