Book Review: A Triple Knot by Emma Campion

A Triple Knot by Emma Campion Book Cover

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Calling all Historical Fiction Fans…

If you’re a fan of historical fiction based on fact and enjoy novels from authors such as Philippa Gregory and Alison Weir, you’ll love A Triple Knot by Emma Campion.

It’s written in a very similar style and like the Tudor era novels from the aforementioned authors, this one is filled with romance and court intrigue, all inspired by true events.

A Triple Knot tells the story of Joan of Kent, wife of England’s first Prince of Wales, Edward, the Black Prince (son of King Edward III). However, before she became the first Princess of Wales, she led quite an interesting life at the center of tense events between England and France during the 1300’s. Not the least of which was her nine year struggle to have her secret marriage (at the age of 12) to Thomas Holland declared valid so that she could escape the unhappy pre-arranged marriage she’d been forced into and finally live a happy life.

The events that lead her to become the wife of Prince Edward after all that are well worth reading.

The back drop of this story is the Hundred Years’ War between England and France, a struggle Joan would like nothing better than to escape, especially since her own father was executed for treason, but she continues to find herself thrust into the fray because the love of her life fights for the King of England.

A quick Wikipedia search can give you the gist of what happened during the course of Joan’s life, but what the author gives you in A Triple Knot is a realistic account based on the known facts of what Joan and the others around her probably felt during this time. What motivations guided them.

There are probably no diaries from that time period to say exactly what was going through Joan’s mind, but the fact that she chose upon her death to be buried next to Thomas Holland rather than next to Prince Edward, strongly indicates the love and affection she felt for her first husband went above all else.

The novel includes a large cast, and provides a glossary of names at the start to remind you who they are. I found this quite helpful. My one disappointment is that the book doesn’t include a map. (I had to look up one online).

Much of the story takes places in foreign locations during the war. So if you aren’t familiar with European geography of the middle ages (or if you need a quick refresher of what England and France were fighting over during the Hundred Years’ War), you may want to do what I did and take a quick look at a map of England the the Low Countries in the 1300s to help keep you oriented as the story progresses.

Bottom line: if you enjoy historical landscapes, brought to life through vivid description and lively dialogue, coupled with palace intrigue and war-time espionage plus a healthy dose of passion and romance, give A Triple Knot a try. You won’t be disappointed.

5 stars out of 5 for this one!

A Triple Knot
by Emma Campion
ISBN: 978-0307589293
Kindle AISN: B00I763KW4
Broadway Books, Random House LLC, July 8, 2014

(FTC Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. My review is based on the Kindle version.)