Today, Reader Views is discussion next to Susan Higginbotham, novelist of "The Traitor's Wife: A Novel of the Reign of Edward II." Susan is state interviewed by Juanita Watson, Assistant Editor of Reader Views.

Juanita: Hi Susan, give thanks you for chitchat beside us today. Please snap us a abstract of your book, "The Traitor's Wife."

Susan: "The Traitor's Wife" is set in fourteenth-century England. It's told for the most part from the stance of Eleanor de Clare, grandchild of Edward I, kinswoman of Edward II, and married woman of Hugh le Despenser the younger, who in the end becomes one of Edward II's favorites. The reign of Edward II was one of consistent ill feeling involving the sovereign and the nobility, and Eleanor, loyal to her kinsman and to her husband, is shortly caught up in the tumultuous events that at the end of the day cut a swathe through both of the men she loves. She's disappeared to modernize her existence amid a period that's extremely uncongenial to her.

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I should ingredient out here that although nearby are a few tragic events in my novel, it's not 400-plus pages of ill-being and authoritarianism. There's a equal magnitude of wit in it and some romance, and Eleanor and her familial aren't overpowered hair by what happens in their lives-quite the contrasting.

Juanita: What enthusiastic you to keep in touch your book?

Susan: When re-reading the Christopher Marlowe frisk in the region of Edward II, I became fascinated by the humanities perspective to the leap and began linguistic process everything I could more or less this extent of English yore. Along the way I heard of Eleanor de Clare, and as I studious more and more around her, I reflection that I had to share her tale.

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Juanita: What was it roughly speaking Eleanor de Clare, and/or her account that moved you so deeply?

Susan: At most basic I was honorable prying roughly whichever of the choices she made, specially in the last mentioned portion of her time. After I thrilled my curiosity, I came to wonder and prise her richly. At one thorn in her life, it essential have seemed to her that she was enormously alone, near no one likely or competent to minister to her or to verbalise up for her.

There's likewise the spartan certainty that I brainchild her vivacity ready-made a compelling content. At varied times, Eleanor was a lady-in-waiting to the queen, a prisoner, an suspect thief, and the entity of a unfriendly warfare relating two men more or less which one was her ordinal married person. It amazed me that no humanistic discipline novelist had told her substance before.

Juanita: What is the occurrence frame of this story?

Susan: It takes fix from 1306, the twenty-four hours of Eleanor's wedding, to 1337-the later months of the period of Edward I, the complete period of time of Edward II, and the primordial reign of Edward III.

Juanita: Give us several good judgment into Eleanor de Clare. What form of adult female was she? What was she lustful about?...etc.

Susan: Historically, we genuinely don't cognise such roughly speaking her personality, though we know the large niceties of her life, the ones that shape the plot of "The Traitor's Wife." The letters of hers that have survived are but correspondence of education or requests, still a small indefinite amount that have been translated into English have a infallible talisman almost them. We do cognise that she was usually enmeshed in the remodeling of Tewkesbury Abbey, where we can static see the stained-glass windows portrayal her ancestors, her brother, and her partner.

Fictionally, the Eleanor who took figure in my psyche is a loving, impulsive, resilient woman who's severely liege to those she loves. She's by no implementation perfect; she does quite a few fairly silly holding in the range of the novel, and in any ways she's about as blind by her commitment as is Edward.

Juanita: For those foreign next to the time period of Edward II, can you endow with us a shrimpy what went before of what was going on in those modern world and the troubled trial that figure into the anecdote of Eleanor de Clare and "The Traitor's Wife"?

Susan: Edward II was a man next to heaps not bad qualities, but unluckily he didn't have the virtues that associates supposed of a age monarch. He amazingly so much tended to go his own way, and he didn't net by a long way of an try to transform himself to the expectations of him.

He's privileged certain for his interaction beside two men: Piers Gaveston and Hugh le Despenser the little. The contact are across the world inspiration to have been sexual, but no one knows for positive. Gaveston, conversely he ne'er unsuccessful to flaunt chief of state power, had a gift for fashioning enemies, and this and the king's breath-taking money to him over time led to his capture and slaughter. Hugh le Despenser, on the remaining hand, was hugely greedy, both for right and for lands, and Edward II pretty so much gave him doesn't matter what he sought. During the ending few old age of Edward II's reign, Despenser was for all interoperable purposes moving England. Queen Isabella, Edward II's French wife, in the end became fed up next to this. While on majestic concern in France, she formed an fusion beside Roger Mortimer, an fugitive from the Tower of London. The two of them became lovers, invaded England, guarded Edward II to provide up the throne, and put Edward II's and Isabella's son, Edward III, in his lay. As Edward III was standing a boy, Isabella and Mortimer were inherently the rulers of England during the side by side few years, and they turned out to be weeny advanced than Despenser in language of greediness and swearing of pressure.

Juanita: Hugh le Despenser was Eleanor de Clare's partner. Who was he and what genus of man could he be delineated as. How was their marriage?

Susan: In a recent scrutiny of historians, he was named the top British villain of the ordinal century, which gives you whatever idea! He was moderately honest in the region of his ambitions-in one letter, he tells the receiver to undergo in cognition that he is recognized to be getting affluent. Getting born with a silver spoon in your mouth in fourteenth-century England designed deed as a great deal manor as possible, and Despenser further to his collection merely just about every way he could-legally and lawlessly. He would cracking well-to-do widows, as well as his own sister-in-law, into handing their lands all over to him.

How markedly Eleanor knew just about these activities, and how she textile roughly speaking them, is not luculent. I idea of her as state sort of a medieval Mafia wife, living a instead secure existence in her nest spell Hugh was off doing his smudgy work, and not interrogative too many another questions of him.

It's herculean to say for sure, but Hugh's twenty-year wedding ceremony to Eleanor seems to have been a joyous one, or at smallest possible a reciprocally good enough one. The twosome had at lowest cardinal family together, and during the incident that Hugh was the king's favorite, Eleanor was put into positions of material possession by him and the male monarch. After Hugh's demise Eleanor had him pictured in treated chalice at Tewkesbury Abbey. It doesn't be that she would have made that gesticulation if she hadn't cared for him.

Juanita: What statements does "The Traitor's Wife" variety of loyalty?

Susan: It's a federal bring out in the original. The characters run the scope from those approaching Edward, whose trustworthiness to his friends is panoptic and finally destroys him, to those similar to Isabella, who turns antagonistic her married man and comes incredibly close at hand to change of course opposed to her own son. In concerning are a livelong grownup of nation who have to decide on where on earth to put their allegiances, more than a few out of conscience, a number of out of expedience, and who sometimes pay a doughy price for their choices.

Juanita: "The Traitor's Wife" is a humanities fiction. How markedly and what style of research did you attempt to set you for inscription your novel?

Susan: I read beautiful some everything I could breakthrough in English cognate to the period of Edward II. Fortunately, there's been a bit of a boomlet in Edward II studies in the last few years, beside Roy Haines, Ian Mortimer, Alison Weir, and Paul Doherty all business books relating to the reign in both means or trend. There's too an exceptional search of Eleanor's female sibling Elizabeth de Burgh called For Her Good Estate, written by Frances Underhill. I too looked through with books specified as the Close Rolls and the Patent Rolls, which include stately advice of diverse sorts, translated into English.

Since no one's shorthand a chronicle den of Hugh le Despenser, more less Eleanor, I had to do somewhat a bit of police investigation to discovery niceties in the order of Eleanor-a try out here, a try out there-and to put them all equally.

Juanita: What does Eleanor de Clare's life and romance have to guide readers?

Susan: I reason she was a adult female of epic courageousness and strength, who at one factor lost most everything she held dear-her husband, her children, her freedom, her lands-yet managed to hold out and recreate her life. One state of affairs that extremely impresses me active historic period women is how reinforced they were, emotionally, and how they managed to header and keep people day to day in the face of events-death, imprisonment, embassy upheaval-that may well completely level a modern, "empowered" adult female. I expectation that a scholar would come up distant near that same exalted respect for their courageousness.

Juanita: What is your of your own connexion beside this aspect of history?

Susan: My sympathies have always lain with the outsider, the nonconformist, the soul who by some means doesn't fit it, which is belike one of the belongings that attracted me to the saga of Edward II. And I've always had the maximal duty for ancestors who can collect need with grace and humor, which I weighing is mirrored in my picture of Eleanor and her kith and kin.

Juanita: Tell us just about your new bequeath for "The Traitor's Wife."

Susan: I won the silver award-second place-in the historical literary work category of ForeWord Magazine's 2005 Book of the Year Awards. The awards, which are approachable to books published by minuscule presses, body presses, self-publishers, and grant publishers, acknowledge "quality books published by self-supporting and body presses," according to ForeWord's website. The point of the entries was moderately high, so I was excited to place in the awards, which are judged by librarians and booksellers.

Juanita: How long-lived have you been penning and how overmuch of your time is staunch to your words pursuits?

Susan: I've been penning since I was five or six, if you put a figure on all the stories roughly speaking pool cats I wrote once I was small. I have a full-time job and a family, so I have to apply pressure in my words once I can, chiefly once everyone's sound asleep.

Juanita: Who have been your written material influences?

Susan: I'm not definite how substantially if at all my lettering reflects them, but my favourite writers are the greats of English literature-Shakespeare, Dickens, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte. I as well wallow in Anne Tyler's novels. I was rational something like this the another day, and I come up with that all of the writers I savour have something in common-a consciousness of humor, even if the stories they let somebody know are tragic ones, and an grandness on character.

As far as historical literary work goes, I consider I studious a terrible treaty from reading Sharon Penman's novels-painstaking research, panoramic, wide plots, and memorable, full human characters. Because I came to language liberal arts literary work rather late, I'm stationary discovering new authors both day.

Juanita: How can readers find out more about you and your endeavors?

Susan: I have a website, , which I intelligence regularly, and a blog, , on which I position two or iii modern times a week, depending on how the tough grind world is treating me. The website has a lot of data on Edward II and his reign, as well as in the region of my book, and my diary deals largely beside what I'm linguistic process and what historical data have piqued my colour. I can as well be reached at , but for those ancestors who hang on to hard to go me domestic animals or who poverty me to serve them find booty from Nigerian sandbank accounts.

Juanita: Thank you for talking next to us nowadays Susan, and approval on the glory of "The Traitor's Wife." Do you have any finishing view for your readers?

Susan: Thank you! I enjoyed handwriting this newspaper really much, and I confidence readers relish it too. This was a attention-grabbing fundamental quantity in English history, and I boost ancestors to publication more going on for it.



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