‘What are little girls made of? Sugar and spice and all things nice, that is what little girls are made of.’ — English rhyme inspired by Catherine of Braganza, who brought the habit of drinking tea to the English court. And so much more…
At the age of twenty-three, the Infanta Catherine of Braganza, daughter of Luísa of Gusmão and king João IV of Portugal, left behind all that was dear to her to become Queen of England. A pawn in a larger political scheme, certainly, but those who knew Catherine perceived her eagerness for this marriage to Charles II, a prince charming who she loved passionately, even before having met him.
She fought bravely for king and country, in a court so different from her own, in a world where her religion was proscribed. Catherine had to watch her husband’s infidelities and the births of his illegitimate children, while her womb remained incapable of fulfilling the only goal set out for her, to bear an heir to the throne. And Charles rewarded her courage with unwavering loyalty.
After the success of Philippa of Lancaster — English Princess, Queen of Portugal, Isabel Stilwell brings us a new and thrilling novel about the only Portuguese princess who rose to the English throne. She leads us on a voyage through the Portuguese court of the 17th century, the turmoil of the Restoration, and the controversial reign of Charles II of England. As we turn the pages, we suffer, laugh and cry along with characters who will remain with us forever.