Today, I am proud to host a stop on Tony Riches’ blog tour for his latest book, Raleigh. Like most of his books, this his latest offering is set in Tudor times, which, as some of you may know, is not my favourite era. At all. But I make an exception for Tony Riches’ books, mainly because his research is always thorough and because, so far, he has managed to present new sides to his chosen protagonists, be it Henry VIII’s rather spoiled sister, Mary, or the wonderfully portrayed Catherine Willoughby, Duchess of Suffolk.
But enough about Tony Riches’ previous books. Let us instead leap straight into his latest offering: I give you Walter Raleigh, adventurer extraordinaire!
Raleigh – Tudor Adventurer
Tudor adventurer, courtier, explorer and poet, Sir Walter Raleigh has been called the last true Elizabethan.
He didn’t dance or joust, didn’t come from a noble family, or marry into one. So how did an impoverished law student become a favourite of the queen, and Captain of the Guard?
The story which began with the best-selling Tudor trilogy follows Walter Raleigh from his first days at the Elizabethan Court to the end of the Tudor dynasty.
I have read and enjoyed most of Tony Riches’ books, all the way from his early offerings set during the War of the Roses to his more recent immersion in Tudor times. His latest release, Raleigh, plants us firmly in the age of Gloriana herself, an age ruled by an aging Elizabeth I, an age when a young and determined man could somehow clamber his way up through society—with the right backing. Walter Raleigh is ambitious. He is capable. He is also very likeable—at least in Mr Riches’ version.
As always, Mr Riches delivers a well-researched background. Casual references to places, to clothes and foodstuff dot the text, anchoring the narrative firmly in the past without ever feeling contrived or excessive. This is Raleigh’s world, one he is utterly familiar with, and through his eyes the reader is given a peephole into the past. Obviously, no story about a Tudor courtier is complete without the royal round which said courtier revolves. In this case, Elizabeth I is Raleigh’s sun, a somewhat clouded sun, what with being a woman past her prime who tends to lash out at those closest to her while doing her best to hide not only advancing age but the constant gnawing loneliness that is something of the hallmark of her life.
Raleigh catches glimpses of the woman behind the mask, and it is that woman rather than the pimped and glittering queen that he so loyally serves. Not that that always saves him from the sharp sting of her displeasure—especially as Queen Elizabeth is a jealous mistress who dislikes when those who serve her fall in love with someone else…
All in all, Raleigh was an interesting and informative read, leaving me with a much higher appreciation of a man I’d heard of but not really been that interested in (well, beyond admiring the fantastic portrait of him in the National Portrait Gallery). Mr Riches skilfully breathes life into our Walter while simultaneously giving us quite some insight into the political manoeuvrings of the Tudor court. I find myself hoping that at some point Mr Riches will sink his teeth into Elizabeth herself—if nothing else to see how he develops those intriguing glimpses of the vulnerable woman behind the royal façade he offers in Raleigh!
Available on #KindleUnlimited.
Universal Link: mybook.to/Raleigh
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B09Z98J183
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09Z98J183
Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B09Z98J183
Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B09Z98J183
About the author: Tony Riches is a full-time UK author of best-selling historical fiction. He lives in Pembrokeshire, West Wales and is a specialist in the lives of the Tudors. He also runs the popular ‘Stories of the Tudors’ podcast, and posts book reviews, author interviews and guest posts at his blog, The Writing Desk. For more information about Tony’s books please visit his website tonyriches.com and find him on Facebook and Twitter @tonyriches
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Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/tonyriches