The Last Queen

  • by C. W. Gortner
  • Narrated by Marguerite Gavin
  • 13 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

One of history's most enigmatic women tells the haunting, passionate story of her tumultuous life. Juana of Castile is just thirteen when she witnesses the fall of Moorish Granada and the uniting of the fractured kingdoms of Spain under her warrior parents, Isabel and Fernando. Intelligent, beautiful, and proud of her heritage, Juana rebels when she is chosen as a bride for the Hapsburg heir - until she comes face-to-face with Prince Philip the Fair, a man who will bring her the greatest of passions, and the darkest despair.When tragedy decimates Juana's family in Spain, she suddenly finds herself heiress to Castile, a realm prey to scheming lords bent on thwarting her rule. The betrayal of those she loves plunges Juana into a ruthless battle of wills - a struggle of corruption, perfidy, and heart-shattering deceit that could cost her the crown, her freedom, and her very life.

More

What the Critics Say

"A novel of ravishing power....With compassion and deep respect, Gortner brings Juana la Loca to vivid life." (Malaga Daily)

More

See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

This is a historical "Novel"

Told in the first person, this is a Novel first with historical time lines. It is written and read beautifully. The last queen of Argonne is a story of corruption, betrayal, repression of woman, and abuse of power. There is very little known about Juana, especially because she was not able to assume her rightful place as Queen because of her husband, father, and son. Her children became very powerful, they even her daughters. I wonder what a difference it would have made if Juana were born in a different time, and lived at the same time as Elizabeth I. Would there ever have been a Spanish armada?
Read full review

- Bonnie

Fascinating!

Audio production:
There were times when Marguerite Gavin’s voice was so breathy that it bothered me and there is one spot in the beginning of the second half where her voice changes completely in tone and volume in the middle of sentence then goes back to how it sounded at the beginning it kind of threw me and think it was some kind of editing gone wrong. ( I meant to write it down at what time but didn’t). but all in all I thought she did a pretty good job at the narration although it was uneven at times.

Another fascinating book, as historical fiction I don’t know how much is true but I like that it wasn’t that Juana was really loco but that her husband & Father drove her to action and they spread the rumors that she was mad. I have read plenty of books about women being put in asylums because they didn’t act in a way their husband or fathers thought they should and this was closer to our own time than this so it is easy for me to believe that this may have been the case with Juana. Also who wouldn’t go mad when everything you know and love is ripped from you and you sent away never to see anyone again?

People romanticize royals so much but the more I read about them I think it’s really a terrible life, someone else is always running your life, there is always someone out to usurp your throne, you have to put up with all these people with their own agendas especially the religious leaders that seem to want to rule over everything.

I read The Queen’s Vow first then this one and I’m glad I read them in this order instead of the published order because this book picks up pretty much where the Queen’s Vow leaves off so it was interesting to see the relationship with her mother before I got to the book about her, so for people who haven’t discover this author yet, I’d read them in the order I have.

This is historical “fiction” and for me when an author takes liberties I don’t mind and as I said above I liked this take on her life, even if it isn’t factual, if I wanted completely factual I would read a non-fiction. But what this does is makes me want to do more research and read up on what her life was really like and for me that’s the key to historical fiction when it makes you want to find out more.

I am hooked on C.W. Gortner and the Spanish Royals I’ve already bought another book about Juana & Catalina/Catherine to continue my immersion into this time period. I will also be getting any other books written by this author!

4 ½ Stars
Read full review

- MissSusie66

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-05-2008
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.