Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Hinges of History by Barbara Kyle ~ Blog Tour Guest Post: Blood Between Queens

Please join me in welcoming author Barbara Kyle to Let Them Read Books! I've just finished Barbara's newest novel -- which is the first novel of hers I've read -- Blood Between Queens, and I thought it was great! (Come back for my review tomorrow!) I'm thrilled to have Ms. Kyle on the blog today sharing some of her favorite interactions with readers. Without further ado, here she is!

The Hinges of History
by Barbara Kyle

Game changer. Turning point. We use these terms to describe crucial, pivotal events. In my historical novels I like to call such events the hinges of history. It's a powerful image: a swinging door. An opening, a closing. Sometimes with a joyful whoosh, sometimes an anxious creak, sometimes a furious slam! 

I set my stories at these hinges of history – decisive historical events – to test my characters’ mettle as the doors of change open and close. My “Thornleigh” books follow a rising, middle-class English family through three tumultuous Tudor reigns during which they must make hard choices about loyalty, allegiance, duty, family, and love.

The Thornleigh family is fictional; I created them. But the historical events they're passionately involved in are dynamic, hard facts.

The "Thornleigh" series begins with The Queen’s Lady set in the nerve-jangled court of Henry VIII as he wrenches England away from the Roman Catholic church to divorce Catherine of Aragon and marry Anne Boleyn. To get Anne, Henry created a national church, and any subject who refused to acknowledge him as its head was threatened with death. Honor Thornleigh fights to save victims of the religious frenzy of the day, and risks her life in trying to save her guardian, Sir Thomas More, from the king's murderous wrath.

In The Queen’s Captive the hinge of history swings when Henry's daughter, Queen Mary, imprisons her twenty-year-old half-sister Elizabeth in the Tower. The terrified Elizabeth fully expected to be executed. The Thornleighs make it their mission to save her, and in the ensuing national uprising against Mary, Elizabeth learns the hard lessons she will need to become a formidable leader.    

The Queen’s Gamble is set during the young Queen Elizabeth's fledgling reign when she faced enemies on all sides. Fearing invasion by the French through Scotland, she sent money to John Knox's Scottish rebels who were fighting their French overlords. Isabel Thornleigh accepts the dangerous mission to secretly take the queen's money to Knox. Eventually, Elizabeth gambled by sending an army north to face the mighty French. Her victory over them, ushering in Knox's Protestant government, swung a hinge of history that forever changed Scotland. 

My new release Blood Between Queens again features Elizabeth I, and the hinge of history is the emergency that Mary, Queen of Scots, creates when she flees to England to escape her enemies and throws herself on the mercy of her cousin Elizabeth. Mary, though, has set her sights on the English crown, and Elizabeth enlists her most trusted subjects, the Thornleighs, to protect it. But Justine, the Thornleighs' ward, pities and sympathizes with Mary when Elizabeth holds her royal cousin under house arrest and launches an inquiry into the accusations that Mary murdered her husband. The crisis splits the Thornleigh family apart.

The hinges of history tested the people who lived in those turbulent times. To this day we can hear echoes of the doors swinging open . . . and those slamming shut.

Thanks, Barbara!

And now for the giveaway!
Wanna win your own copy of
Blood Between Queens?

Simply leave a comment on this post with your email address and you're entered!

This giveaway is open to residents of the US and Canada and ends at 11:59pm Friday, May 17, 2013. Winner will be selected at random. Thanks, and good luck!

This giveaway is closed and the winner has been selected.
Stay tuned for more great giveaways!

Barbara Kyle is the author of the acclaimed Tudor-era “Thornleigh” novels Blood Between Queens, The Queen’s Gamble, The Queen’s Captive, The King’s Daughter and The Queen’s Lady which follow a rising middle-class family through three tumultuous Tudor reigns. She also writes contemporary thrillers. Over 400,000 copies of her books have been sold in seven countries. In July 2013 Barbara will be a speaker at Ontario's world-renowned Stratford Festival with her talk "Elizabeth and Mary, Rival Queens: A Study of Leadership Lost and Won" about the cousin-queens Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots featured in Blood Between Queens.

Barbara has taught writers at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies and is known for her dynamic workshops for many writers organizations and conferences. Before becoming an author Barbara enjoyed a twenty-year acting career in television, film, and stage productions in Canada and the US.

For more information, please visit Barbara Kyle's WEBSITE.

Blood Between Queens is on a blog tour!
Click here to view the tour schedule,
with more guest posts, reviews, and chances to win!


  1. This novel sounds so good, and I love the cover! Thanks for the giveaway.

  2. Sounds like a great read. Thanks for the giveaway!!!!!

  3. This book is a great way to learn about Queen Elizabeth I. It seems that the more I read about her, the more I am fasinated by her intelligence and her strength. Want to learn more!!!

    Thank you for this giveaway!!!


  4. Barbara, good to see book 5 in the Thornleigh series is on tour! And this post is quite interesting with its discussion of just where in history to set an historical novel. I like the hinge reference. Thanks for the giveaway and see you in Stratford in July.

  5. What a fascinating novel and an interesting post today. Thanks for this great giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  6. I am captivated with this wonderful historical. An excellent post which interests me. Thanks. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  7. An interesting post indeed. I agree there are things that echo down to the present day from those turning points long ago. I wonder what events today will be looked upon as the hinges of history to future generations. Thanks for the giveaway, I'd love to win a copy. carlscott(at)prodigy(dot)net(dot)mx

  8. Interesting post; what a great way to use historical events! Thanks for the giveaway!

    lafra86 at gmail dot com

  9. Wow! I can't WAIT to read this! I love that cover, too ; )
    I wonder what kind of events or people inspired the author while writing this book!?
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    mestith at gmail dot com

  10. This book is on my tbr list. I can't wait to read it. I would love a chance to win it. Thank you

    griperang at embarqmail dot com

  11. Thanks for the giveaway! Sounds like a great book!!


  12. Very interesting post - made me want to get my hands on this book!

    tmrtini at gmail dot com

  13. already added to my WishList!!!

    thank you for the giveaway!!!

    cyn209 at juno dot com

  14. I like what Barbara said about the "hinges of history," it made me want to create my own list of pivotal events. Can't wait to read "Blood Between Queens!"

  15. oh gosh I been eyeing this one for months! so very excited about it <3 love the premise! hehe historical fiction is one of my favorites!

    lilypondreads at gmail dot com

  16. They look like some fascinating stories.
    mce1011 AT aol DOT com


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