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Blood, Fire and Gold: The story of Elizabeth I and Catherine de Medici

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Estelle Paranque comes here to reveal the intimate details that brings to life the two most powerful female rulers of that century.

For example, I didn’t realize Marie didn’t care all that much for Mary, Queen of Scots, her daughter-in-law for a short time. The letters and diplomatic interplay among the queens is highlighted and makes this book worthwhile. Elizabeth usually comes up in the context of the Northern Renaissance, and Catherine in the context of the Wars of the Reformation). The first third of the book covers the childhoods and youth of the two women told in selected episodes. Not only were the hoaxes widely influential, drawing in celebrities such as Samuel Johnson, Benjamin Franklin and Jonathan Swift, but they also inflamed concerns about ‘English credulity’.

This is not the Catherine of Nancy Goldstone's The Rival Queens: Catherine de' Medici, Her Daughter Marguerite de Valois, and the Betrayal that Ignited a Kingdom or Jean Plaidy’s fictional treatment in Madame Serpent. Two Queens who are subjected to many legends, and fame, or infamy, depending on which region you are from. But nothing has been said of their complicated relationship: thirty years of friendship, competition and conflict that changed the face of Europe. Catherine de Medici was the daughter of Lorenzo II de Medici, Duke of Urbino, and Madeline de La Tour, d’Auvergne.

Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, while Elizabeth had to deal with the Spanish Armada and what to do with Mary Queen of Scots. From the bestselling author of Normandy ’44 and Sicily ’43 comes the untold story of the Sherwood Rangers.She has been featured in several international historical television documentaries, including The Boleyns: A Scandalous Family and Secrets d’Histoire, as well as the history podcasts like HistoryHit, Not Just the Tudors, and Talking Tudors. Bouncing back and forth between the lives of Catherine and Elizabeth, readers are treated to a great deal of history, particularly second-tier information that helps answer why things actually happen.

Or is the news a vital tool, enabling worldwide activism movements such as `BlackLivesMatter and enforcing necessary scrutiny of the ethics of those in power? Similarly, we are made aware of the dangerous line of succession that Henry VIII leaves behind, but only as it affects Elizabeth. Historian Estelle Paranque looks at the relationship between Elizabeth I and Catherine de Medici, two of the most powerful women in Renaissance Europe. Fake news’ and ‘going viral’ may be modern terms, but as this eye-opening book shows, these concepts have been with us for centuries.

After the deaths of King Henry VIII, King Edward VI, and Queen Mary I, Elizabeth got her chance to rule England in her way.

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