Title: “Wideacre: A Novel”
Author: Philippa Gregory
Number of Pages: 665
Date of Publication: July 2, 2003
3 stars: Not my favorite Philippa Gregory Novel
After reading “The Other Boleyn Girl“, I hurried to buy more of Philippa Gregory’s work. I thoroughly enjoyed “The Virgin’s Lover” and “The Queen’s Fool: A Novel“, but when it came to this book– I wasn’t as satisfied.
The first in a trilogy (next is: “The Favored Child : A Novel“, followed by “Meridon“), the story is about a woman named Beatrice Lacey. Her father raised her as if she were a boy. She knows the land and the people who work it, much better than her younger, sickly brother Harry. However it is Harry who will inherit- not Beatrice. (If you haven’t read anything about the book, the next paragraph contains spoilers; however these details are clearly listed in Amazon’s summary.)
Sadly, she will do anything to end up mistress of Wideacre. She helps plan her father’s death, and ends up seducing her own brother. This is where I was most turned off. Beatrice ends up having two children, both of them fathered by Harry. I’m afraid I just couldn’t get over that, and it ended up ruining the story for me.
If you can get around the incest, I suppose it is an interesting read. With Phillipa Gregory writing it, it must be! In any case, I wasn’t interested enough to pick up the next two in the series. Although, if you would like to try other Gregory novels, I definitely recommend the Tudor trilogy (mentioned above).