A Rose for the Crown
A KING MISUNDERSTOOD BY HISTORY,
A LOVE STORY THAT HAS NEVER BEEN TOLD
In A Rose for the Crown, we meet one of history's alleged villains through the eyes of a captivating new heroine -- the woman who was the mother of his illegitimate children, a woman who loved him for who he really was, no matter what the cost to herself.
As Kate Haute moves from her peasant roots to the luxurious palaces of England, her path is inextricably intertwined with that of Richard, Duke of Gloucester, later King Richard III. Although they could never marry, their young passion grows into a love that sustains them through war, personal tragedy, and the dangerous heights of political triumph.
Anne Easter Smith's impeccable research provides the backbone of an engrossing and vibrant debut from a major new historical novelist.
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Reading Group Guide
Questions & Topics for Discussion
- The Prologue contains significant details about Kate and her two sons, one of whom dies tragically in these opening pages. Did having this information up front influence your reading of the story? Why do you suppose Anne Easter Smith chose to reveal these facts in the Prologue?
- When Kate is ten years old, her father tells her the story of how he came into possession of an ecu, a French coin, in order to help her understand the concept of loyalty. Loyalty is "when you stand by someone you love or honor and do not desert them even in the bad times," he says. What impact does this conversation have on Kate? How does the idea of loyalty play out in the story? Why does Kate give Richard the ecu to wear when it comes into her possession?
- When Kate's parents decide to accept Richard Haute's offer to have Kate join their household, John Bywood says to him, "As much as it do sadden us to see her go, we are obliged to do what is best for Kate." Even ten-year-old Kate acknowledges that "the thrill of a new life at the Mote must outweigh the loss." How do these same statements apply to Kate and her own children many years later?
- Kate is reluctant to marry her first husband, Thomas Draper, a man much older than she. But in what ways does Kate's marriage to Thomas come to benefit her? Why is Kate, a smart woman, then