The King's Grace by Anne Easter Smith is the 3rd book in her WOTR trilogy, I reckon is what you'd call it. They're all Go Team White Rose & uber-Ricardian which is nice
This one kicks in just prior to Bosworth when all the lil Yorkies were packed off to Sheriff Hutton for safekeeping & concern the lives of 3 Plantagenet bastards.
Grace, the title character, is one of Edward IVs progeny & I was vastly amused with the fact that after her mother died she was taken in by La Diva Woodville LOL Grace sprung from some brief reference in household rolls regarding her being one of Edward's bastards but since no other info was forthcoming, the author took artistic license. Apparently Elizabeth Woodville harbored no ill-will toward the fruit of Edward's dalliances (an imaginative stretch) because her true love was her Lancastrian 1st hubby, John Grey. Yesm that would explain why her extant will says tip me in the tomb with Edward
Anyhow, the other 2 bastards belong to Richard III & Clarence. One is John of Gloucester, who managed to successfully escape Henry VII 2x, once after being imprisoned after Bosworth at Sheriff Hutton, & the other after riding hell bent for leather apres Stoke. Mummy was Richard's teenage love in A Rose for the Crown. There was also a bastard sister, Catherine, who cocked up her toes right ere Bosworth.
The other, as was teased in Smith's Daughter of York with her mention of Margaret of Burgundy's "secret boy", is Clarence's get from a one-night stand with a Flemish wench. Only it turns out that Clarence, never noted for being able to hold his likker, really wasn't. He done passed out ere he did the deed & Edward shrugged & nudged him over & did it for him LOL This lad turns out to be....ta da....Perkin Warbeck
Yesm you can already see 2/3 of these royal bastards is a-coming to a bad end, can't ya?
I was LMFAO at how the Yorkist daughters referred to Margaret Beaufort as "Scraggy Maggie" & Henry VII as "The Tudor Turd" behind their backs PMSL OMG LOL Props for amusement factor there. Bit of an ick factor with Grace walking in on Henry & Elizabeth of York getting horizontal ere the wedding. Which when ya think about it, they had to have, as they weren't married until mid-January 1486 & Arthur was born that August, methinks. Not ick acuz tis graphical, just ick acuz tis Henry LOL & the author keeps describing him as all bony-like (takes after scraggy Mummy). Poor old Bess portrayed as the usual Tudor tool once she's charmed the Tudor cobra LOL LOL LOL I amused myself there.
At any rate, we knows the sad fate of the lads & Henry WAS a turd by God, he hung em both. They should've at least gotten a nice axe having royal blood jeez Well, at least John of Gloucester as we dunno who Perkin Warbeck really was (tho methinks Smith's explanation is as good as any considering how when ya look at the Warbeck sketch it do not only put you in mind of Edward IV but it also has that pursed up lil mouth like Henry VIII & a more squared-off jaw like Richard's). I shall go fetch it from Photobucket posthaste:
Margaret of Burgundy is obviously the brains of the Yorkist crew with all her ceaseless plotting against the Tudor Turd LOL that still slays me & Grace ends up mighty unfussed with Auntie in the end because the scheming leads to the lads' unsavory demises Which sensitive lil Grace goes to see, determined to support em to the bitter end. John of Gloucester was condemned to hanging, drawing & quartering despite being the son of a king & Henry didn't commute it at all. Smith has John's mother, Kate, sell the ring Richard gave her to slip the hangman some silver to make sure his neck snaps quicklike so as to avoid the messy rest. Is that true, that he died from the hanging alone, anyone know? John had successfully gotten away to Burgundy after Stoke, but then Auntie's plotting re Perkin & the need to hook up with Lovell in Scots exile had John volunteer for the mission. Grace feels the whole thing was just unnecessary & Auntie should've done a better job of keeping her little bro's son safe.
I want to mention the description Smith has of Perkin's trip to Tyburn. I sort of thunk twas like the tumbrils in the French Revolution, load up a bunch of condemned in a cart & drive em on over. Apparently not as poor Perkin took his last jaunt on a hurdle dragged thru the streets of London to be jeered at & spat upon for entertainment of the masses. A hurdle is basically tying some poor slob to a sled-like contraption & hitching said sled to a horse Not as nice a visual as the tumbril thing (well I reckon that wasn't so nice either for the peeps involved but relatively speaking). I tried to find a hurdle pic & the best I could come up with is a Gunpowder Plot execution woodcut HERE.
Plus even tho Henry "mercifully" spared him the drawing & quartering bits (ref the end of Braveheart yuck), when the poor lad drops, Grace being short (& the subject of many are ya sure you're a Plantagenet little girl jests because of it) can't quite see & asks her hubby if he's dead & he says yesm he sure is but he's thinking the poor sod will likely twist in the wind a good HOUR because it ain't that far a drop & he's so emaciated he ain't got the weight to snap his own neck from it I remember in that The King's Daughter book with the prison tours twas said rellies would pay the hangman a groat to let em yank on the legs to snap the necks of their loved ones so it wouldn't take forever. I hope it didn't take an hour acuz that's just not right. At least with the axe (if they had good aim) twas over quicklike.
Another bit you peeps might find interesting is what a turd Henry was to Perkin, because before he was clapped in the Tower (the better to "plot" with Warwick), Henry kept him at Court to trot out & publicly humiliate on a regular basis. Twas rumored Henry had an eye to Lady Catherine Gordon's favors at the time as well. Grace & her sister Cecily (one of Edward & Elizabeth's brood) are appalled at what a big turd Henry can be with all this & wondering WTF his problem is, why doesn't he either exile, execute, or imprison the guy instead of being such a sadist about it. Perkin & Catherine were said to have had 1 or 2 kidlets, Smith runs with 1, a boy, whom Henry takes away from Catherine. In the end notes (we the end notes) Smith says there's a family in Swansea to this day descended from a 16th-century "Richard Perkins" & speculates that might be their son. Henry is also a turd because he violated Sanctuary not once but twice, 1st in lying his arse off to get Perkin to step out of Beaulieu Abbey, & same with his wife elsewhere. I mean, cmon, I thunk the concept of Sanctuary was fairly sacrosant, Elizabeth Woodville hied off there 2x & neither the Lancastrians nor Richard made her come out until she was damn well good & ready to do so. I'm surprised there were no papal noises over such
I was even all when Grace goes to the Tower to visit poor old Perkin on the eve of his execution acuz it was so sad There was this line he had in the beginning where he's still a youngster & tells Auntie Margaret in gratefulness for rescuing him from his wicked stepfather "I would gladly give my life for you, madame" & he tells Grace to remind Margaret of his fulfllment of his promise Ok tis Monday-morning quarterbacking for a fiction writer but twas still all
The author does a good job of describing the details, can actually write, does her research, has lots of obscure mentions of late 15th-century stuff (gold star for whoever knows what a tussie-mussie, for example, is w/o consulting Mr Google LOL). There's even a nice map of Perkin's travels. I enjoyed it so go read it & so shall you