Coffee Pot Blog Tour: Wendy Dunn / All Manner of Things


Welcome to a stop on the Coffee Pot Book Tour. Today we are hosting Wendy Dunn and her book, All Manner of Things. The final installment of her story of Katherine of Aragon. Grab a cup of something hot and curl up in a comfy chair. First the technical details.


Falling Pomegranate Seeds: All Manner of Things, Book #2

By Wendy J. Dunn

Publication Date: January 15th 2021.

Genre: Historical Fiction.

Publisher: Poesy Quill Publishing

Print Length: 449 Pages




Author Bio:


 

Wendy J. Dunn is an Australian author, playwright and poet who has been obsessed by Anne Boleyn and Tudor History since she was ten-years-old. She is the author of three Tudor novels: Dear Heart, How Like You This?, the winner of the 2003 Glyph Fiction Award and 2004 runner up in the Eric Hoffer Award for Commercial Fiction, The Light in the Labyrinth, her first young adult novel, and Falling Pomegranate Seeds: The Duty of Daughters.

 

While she continues to have a very close and spooky relationship with Sir Thomas Wyatt, the elder, serendipity of life now leaves her no longer wondering if she has been channeling Anne Boleyn and Sir Tom for years in her writing, but considering the possibility of ancestral memory. Her own family tree reveals the intriguing fact that her ancestors – possibly over three generations – had purchased land from both the Boleyn and Wyatt families to build up their own holdings. It seems very likely Wendy’s ancestors knew the Wyatts and Boleyns personally.




 

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Blurb:

Winter, 1539


MarĂ­a de Salinas is dying. 


Too ill to travel, she writes a letter to her daughter Katherine, the young duchess of Suffolk. A letter telling of her life: a life intertwined with her friend and cousin Catalina of Aragon, the youngest child of Isabel of Castile. It is a letter to help her daughter understand the choices she has made in her life, beginning from the time she keeps her vow to Catalina to share her life of exile in England.


Friendship, betrayal, hatred, forgiveness – All Manner of Things tells a story of how love wins out in the end


Praise for All Manner of Things. 


“A timeless story of friendship and love, which will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned, All Manner of Things is Wendy J. Dunn's best novel yet…”

Lauren Chater, author of The Lace Weavers and Gulliver’s Wife.


“To read this book is like tasting a succulent pomegranate that swells and ripens and reveals the luscious fruit…”

Glenice Whitting, author Pickle to a Pie and What Time is it There?


“A sensitive and inspiring portrait of faith and friendship, framed around the devotion inspired by a remarkable queen. Wendy J. Dunn has written another gem of a novel for Tudor enthusiasts!”

Gareth Russell, author of Young and Damned and Fair: The Life of Catherine Howard, Fifth Wife of King Henry VIII (US title) (2017), The Darksome Bounds of a Failing World: The Sinking of the Titanic and the End of the Edwardian Era (2019).



“This is a story ripe with passion and rich in historical detail. All Manner of Things draws the reader deep into the heart of Henry's Tudor court, with its machinations, betrayals and very human stories of love and loss…”

Rachel Nightingale, author of The Tales of Tarya.


“A finely wrought tale that resurrects the indomitable spirit of Katherine of Aragon, breathing new life into her oft-told story... Yet another spellbinding novel from Wendy J Dunn!” 

Adrienne Dillard, author of Cor Rotto and The Raven’s Widow.


"I'm so fussy about historical fiction, but Wendy J Dunn never fails to please. Dunn breathes life into Catalina and Maria in this celebration of true friendship. Their story seemed to reach through the ages to truly touch me. Beautiful, just beautiful" 


Claire Ridgway, author of The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown.


“…this book made me fascinate over times long ago, times when ancient buildings were brand new, faded portraits were still sharp and striking and faith and loyalty were absolute; times when women had so little autonomy it was never an option for them to venture out on their own and just ditch this damn place.”

Angela Wauchop, Backstory Literary Journal.





My Review:

Plot in brief: (no spoilers) All Manner of Things is book two in a series. This volume centers on the relationship between Maria de Salinas and Catalina, daughter of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain. The story begins as Catalina begins her journey to England to marry Prince Arthur, the heir to the throne. Once in England, we follow her life as she marries, becomes a widow and then marries again, to King Henry VIII. 

The Characters: The history of the Tudors is fairly well known, but this book is driven by Maria de Salinas, a cousin/friend/companion to Katherine of Aragon. Both women arrive in England as teenagers. Maria is the younger of the two. Kathrine's story is told by Maria, in heartbreaking detail both through the narrative and a series of letters. But Maria has a story of her own to tell, her own personal feelings of love, loss and friendship. 

The History: The story is told with great attention to detail. We are invited to peer through a window into the world of Henry VII and the early Tudor Court and that of King Henry VIII. From freezing cold Ludlow Castle to the glittering Field of the Cloth of Gold, we are treated to a portrait of life for a high born Tudor woman. A life that was not her own, pushed and pulled by the whim of men. 

The Writing: Maria's story is told in third person. It's a very deep dive into her feelings with a significant amount of internal thought. The pace is sedate as Maria slowly shares Catherine's story. At 450 pages it was not a quick read. The writing and editing are both excellent.

Overall: I enjoyed learning about Catalina/Katherine and her journey from Spain. I knew something of her life after the death of Prince Arthur but was surprised by the amount of neglect she endured from both her father and King Henry VII. Although, this is book two, I read it as a stand alone without any problem. 

Recommendation: I think any lover of all things Tudor will enjoy this deep look into the life of Maria and Katherine. 

Rating: I give this book ⭐⭐⭐⭐✶  four 1/2  stars




Promotional Trailer:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePe_Bkp0-bk&t=14s



Buy Links:


Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CAAmazon AU


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