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The Siege Winter: A Novel
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Published:
HarperAudio 2015
Status:
Available from OverDrive
Description

A powerful historical novel by the late Ariana Franklin and her daughter Samantha Norman, The Siege Winter is a tour de force mystery and murder, adventure and intrigue, a battle for a crown, told by two courageous young women whose fates are intertwined in twelfth century England's devastating civil war.

1141. England is engulfed in war as King Stephen and his cousin, the Empress Matilda, vie for the crown. In this dangerous world, not even Emma, an eleven-year-old peasant, is safe. A depraved monk obsessed with redheads kidnaps the ginger-haired girl from her village and leaves her for dead. When an archer for hire named Gwyl finds her, she has no memory of her previous life. Unable to abandon her, Gwyl takes the girl with him, dressing her as a boy, giving her a new name—Penda—and teaching her to use a bow. But Gwyn knows that the man who hurt Penda roams free, and that a scrap of evidence she possesses could be very valuable.

Gwyl and Penda make their way to Kenilworth, a small but strategically important fortress that belongs to fifteen-year-old Maud. Newly wedded to a boorish and much older husband after her father's death, the fierce and determined young chatelaine tempts fate and Stephen's murderous wrath when she gives shelter to the empress.

Aided by a garrison of mercenaries, including Gwyl and his odd red-headed apprentice, Maud will stave off Stephen's siege for a long, brutal winter that will bring a host of visitors to Kenilworth—kings, soldiers . . . and a sinister monk with deadly business to finish.

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Format:
OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen
Edition:
Unabridged
Street Date:
02/24/2015
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780062373632
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Ariana Franklin. (2015). The Siege Winter: A Novel. Unabridged HarperAudio.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Ariana Franklin. 2015. The Siege Winter: A Novel. HarperAudio.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Ariana Franklin, The Siege Winter: A Novel. HarperAudio, 2015.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Ariana Franklin. The Siege Winter: A Novel. Unabridged HarperAudio, 2015.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Needs Update?:
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Date Added:
Dec 09, 2020 18:06:58
Date Updated:
Dec 09, 2020 18:34:16
Last Metadata Check:
Nov 26, 2023 16:49:53
Last Metadata Change:
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OverDrive Product Record

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        Ariana Franklin was the award-winning author of Mistress of the Art of Death and the critically acclaimed, bestselling medieval thriller series of the same name, as well as the twentieth-century thriller City of Shadows. She died in 2011, while writing The Siege Winter.

      • name: Ariana Franklin
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        Samantha Norman is Ariana Franklin's daughter. A successful feature writer, columnist, and film critic, she lives in London.

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title
The Siege Winter
fullDescription

A powerful historical novel by the late Ariana Franklin and her daughter Samantha Norman, The Siege Winter is a tour de force mystery and murder, adventure and intrigue, a battle for a crown, told by two courageous young women whose fates are intertwined in twelfth century England's devastating civil war.

1141. England is engulfed in war as King Stephen and his cousin, the Empress Matilda, vie for the crown. In this dangerous world, not even Emma, an eleven-year-old peasant, is safe. A depraved monk obsessed with redheads kidnaps the ginger-haired girl from her village and leaves her for dead. When an archer for hire named Gwyl finds her, she has no memory of her previous life. Unable to abandon her, Gwyl takes the girl with him, dressing her as a boy, giving her a new name—Penda—and teaching her to use a bow. But Gwyn knows that the man who hurt Penda roams free, and that a scrap of evidence she possesses could be very valuable.

Gwyl and Penda make their way to Kenilworth, a small but strategically important fortress that belongs to fifteen-year-old Maud. Newly wedded to a boorish and much older husband after her father's death, the fierce and determined young chatelaine tempts fate and Stephen's murderous wrath when she gives shelter to the empress.

Aided by a garrison of mercenaries, including Gwyl and his odd red-headed apprentice, Maud will stave off Stephen's siege for a long, brutal winter that will bring a host of visitors to Kenilworth—kings, soldiers . . . and a sinister monk with deadly business to finish.

reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: AudioFile Magazine
      • content: In 1180, the dying abbot of Perton Abbey calls for a scribe to take down a story filled with political maneuvering, war, pillaging, and sexual perversion. Kate Reading proves the perfect chronicler of this complex tale, endowing each character with credible voices and multilayered personalities. In England the year 1141 finds King Stephen and the Empress Matilda in a battle for the throne. Thousands have been killed, castles routed, and the countryside left in ruins. Reading adds immediacy and poignancy to the story of crossbowman Gwil and Em/Penda, the child who was left for dead after suffering brutality at the hands of mercenaries. Reading delivers the heat of battle as well as characters' personal doubts, fears, and inner monologues with such deftness and artistry that hopes, dreams, and motives are crystal clear. Wonderful listening. S.J.H. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2015, Portland, Maine
      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        September 1, 2014

        Though she wrote fiction under her own name, Diana Norman, Franklin won everyone's attention (and a clutch of Crime Writers' Association daggers) for her series featuring medieval medical examiner Adelia Aguilar. This work, completed after Franklin's death by her writer/critic daughter, returns to 12th-century England but has no Adelia in sight. As King Stephen and the Empress Matilda play tug-of-war with the crown, peasant girl Emma is abducted by a crazed monk and left for dead, then rescued by archer-for-hire Gwyl. Soon, Emma is dressed as a boy and serving as an apprentice to Gwyl. But what about that monk?

        Copyright 2014 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        Starred review from January 1, 2015

        Norman ably fills the hole in historical fiction left by the death of her late mother, Franklin ("Mistress of the Art of Death" series), by bringing the author's final manuscript to fruition with aplomb. During the Anarchy, the 12th-century civil war of succession between King Stephen and Empress Matilda over the English throne, a young girl falls victim to a roving horde of mercenaries led by a degenerate monk. Left for dead, she is rescued by a lone archer who teaches her to shoot and dresses her as a boy for protection. As they travel the countryside seeking justice, they find themselves at the heart of the war in which both their futures and that of the country are at stake. VERDICT The rigidity of status in feudal society rightly permeates every scene, but Norman and Franklin excel at showing how the war impacts everyone in this richly researched, female-driven historical mystery. [See Prepub Alert, 8/11/14.]--Liza Oldham, Beverly, MA

        Copyright 2015 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        December 15, 2014
        Franklin (A Murderous Procession, 2010, etc.) and Norman draw a tale of intrigue and violence from the Anarchy, the 12th-century struggle over the right to rule England between Stephen of Blois and Empress Matilda. In 1135, Henry I, king of England and Normandy, dies, leaving his kingdom to his daughter, Empress Matilda, the Holy Roman Emperor's widow. His nephew Stephen objects, claiming the crown, and England becomes "a land devoid of loyalty," where "plunder, pillage...devastation, starvation" haunt its people. The authors use Em, an 11-year-old peasant girl from the Cambridgeshire fens, and mercenary Gwilherm de Vannes, an arbalist-crossbowman-to follow the story. Gwilherm escapes a battlefield rout only to be attacked by his companions, rogues who then rape and beat little Em. Gwilherm nurses her to health, but she's lost her memory and despises her femininity-"They'd sent her mad, and small wonder." Gwilherm dresses her as a boy, dubs her Penda and teaches her archery. Penda in tow, Gwilherm vows revenge on the rapist, Thancmar, a monk who led an attack on Ely Cathedral as part of a scheme to secure appointment as an archbishop. Highlighted by solid characterization of historical and fictional figures alike, the authors' research on day-to-day medieval life shines. Gwilherm and Penda rescue Empress Matilda and two knights during a blizzard and repair to Kenniford castle, a strategic redoubt along the Thames. There, young Maud rules as chatelaine; her boorish and cruel husband, Sir John of Tewing, to whom she's been married on Stephen's orders, lies silent after a stroke. Maud switches her support to Matilda, and the siege begins. This thoroughly captivating tale was begun by celebrated historical novelist Franklin, who died before its completion, and completed seamlessly by her journalist daughter, Norman.

        COPYRIGHT(2014) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        January 1, 2015
        Franklin's final novel, skillfully completed by her daughter after her death, recounts two young women's courage during a dark, chaotic era. As civil war devastates midtwelfth century England, Maud, the 16-year-old chatelaine of Kenniford, weds a boorish older man to save her people. Raped and discarded, Em, a peasant girl from the Cambridgeshire fens, is rescued by an aging mercenary and becomes an expert archer under his tutelage. Their stories converge as Matilda, the previous king's heir, escapes her rival, King Stephen, and seeks shelter at Kenniford. The event-filled plotline includes themes of vengeance and coming-of-age, a hint of romance, and a mystery about a piece of parchment that Em's attacker will kill to repossess. Her slow recovery from emotional trauma is especially touching. The cheeky wit and precise descriptions that were Franklin's hallmarks are as sharp as ever, and the major characters are delightfully human. The book also has a genuine feel for medieval life and times. This unique collaboration is a worthy conclusion to one remarkable career and a promising beginning to another.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2015, American Library Association.)

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A powerful historical novel by the late Ariana Franklin and her daughter Samantha Norman, The Siege Winter is a tour de force mystery and murder, adventure and intrigue, a battle for a crown, told by two courageous young women whose fates are intertwined in twelfth century England's devastating civil war.

1141. England is engulfed in war as King Stephen and his cousin, the Empress Matilda, vie for the crown. In this dangerous world, not even Emma, an eleven-year-old peasant, is safe. A depraved monk obsessed with redheads kidnaps the ginger-haired girl from her village and leaves her for dead. When an archer for hire named Gwyl finds her, she has no memory of her previous life. Unable to abandon her, Gwyl takes the girl with him, dressing her as a boy, giving her a new name—Penda—and teaching her to use a bow. But Gwyn knows that the man who hurt Penda roams free, and that a scrap of evidence she possesses could be very valuable.

Gwyl and Penda make...

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