The Brothers Of Gwynedd by Edith Pargeter
Set in 13th Century Wales at the time of the Plantagenets, The Brothers of Gwynedd is an ambitious and absorbing saga about Llewelyn, the grandson of Llewelyn the Great, enveloping readers in the guts and glory of medieval Wales. Llewelyn dreams of one Wales, united against the threat of the English. But first he must tackle enemies nearer home. His brothers vie with him for power among themselves and with the English king, Henry III, and their willful infighting threatens the very soil of their fathers. Despite the support of his beloved wife, Eleanor, Llewelyn finds himself starting down his own downfall, a tragic death he might not be able to prevent, and a country slipping out of his grasp.
Originally published as four volumes, this quartet includes Sunrise in the West, The Dragon at Noonday, The Hounds of Sunset, and Afterglow and Nightfall.
The story starts , when Samson introduces himself, as the narrator of the story. We get all the tidnits about his life, his relationship with the brothers of Gwenedd and also who they are in relation to Wales. The beginning might seem a little difficult to get into as so many characters are introduced in a very short period of time…but eventually the story picks up it’s pace.
Llewelyn, his brothers, his father, mother, are all fighting for their rightful place on the throne of Wales. The ancient rules that still applies there, even though his father is illegitimate, he is the oldest son. According to the laws, he is the rightful heir, making Prince Llewelyn second in line to the thrown after his older brother Owen. But, his father’s brother, David, who is legitimate, took the reign instead, the old king didn’t want a dispute, and the country needed strength against the possible threat of England’s invasion.
After elder Gwynedd “fathers” pass away only left id the four about whom the book is focused on. Owen is the eldest, but he is raised in England under King Henry’s grace, and is therefore not seen as a true Welshman to the lords there. Llewellyn is the second son who fled England to stay in Wales. These two elder brothers come to arms against each other in regards to the partitioning of land and Owen seems just plain jealous that Llewellyn is more Welsh than he is.
It’s story of brother against brother and England against Welsh. I am satisfied with this section of the book. It has all the elements to make a novel successful. Action+Suspense+Historical Detail. But I am still not done yet, as this book contains 800 pages and the entire reading is broken down into four parts…this is only a glimpse of the first part. The second section” The Dragon At Noonday” will not be posted until June.
Title: The Brothers of Gwynedd: The Legend of the First True Prince of Wales
Author: Edith Pargeter
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: May 1, 2010
Paperback: 800 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
The other May 18 Review are here:
A few May 18 Reviews:
The Broken Teepee
Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell
Tanzanite’s Shelf and Stuff
Passages to the Past
The Book Faery
This is a complimentary copy of The Brothers of Gwynedd by Edith Pargeter from Sourcebooks for Sourcebooks Summer Reading Club.