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100 Pages A Day...Stephanie's Book Reviews

I absolutely love historical fiction and read a lot of it; I love to learn history this way.  I also enjoy reading science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller and non-fiction science.

By Love Divided

By Love Divided (The Lydiard Chronicles) - Elizabeth St. John

Lucy Apsley's children are grown and her best friend and husband is dead. They are forced out of their home in the Tower of London and have to face the debts left by Allen Apsley when he funded the King's cause. Lucy attempts to keep herself out of debt and her family together by marrying a Puritan, however, Leventhrope Franke is more interested in the collection of Lucy's debts. Lucy's son, Allen decides to take up the life Lucy left behind in the Courts and befriends his cousin, Edward Villiers. Allen's loyalties are soon tied to King Charles I and Allen becomes a soldier and strategist for the Crown. Meanwhile, Allen's sister, Luce has found love with John, who sides with the Parliamentary cause. When the King begins a civil war, the Apsley family is divided in their loyatlities, but together in their love for one another.

This is a wonderful continuation of The Lady of The Tower. Written by a descendant of the Apsley family and using their journals, By Love Divided provides a unique and insightful look into the English Civil War through the eyes of a real family during the time. Unlike The Lady of the Tower, this story focuses more on Lucy's children, though Lucy is still a driving force within the family and the glue that is desperately trying to hold them together. I didn't really know much about the English Civil War and it was very interesting to me to see the sides unfold from within and how the Apsley family dealt with loyalties on both sides. Of course, one of the most interesting characters from The Lady of The Tower, Lucy's sister Barbara makes an appearance and uses her influence with the King to help the Apsley's while still maintaining her hatred for her sister. Through Allen and John's eyes I was able to see the war clearly from both the Royalist and Parliamentary sides. The love within the Apsley family was the shining star throughout the story and I can't wait to read about what the Apley's accomplish next.

This book was received in exchange for an honest review.