Godiva: A Novel

Paperback | April 21, 2016

byNicole Galland

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Nicole Galland, author of The Fool’s Tale, turns her clever pen toward re-imagining the famous legend of Lady Godiva in this expertly crafted historical novel set in Anglo-Saxon England.
 
A 12th-century noblewoman, Lady Godiva is infamous for riding naked through Coventry to relieve her people of her husband’s unfair and oppressive taxation. Leofric, Earl of Mercia, said he would ease the tax burden if she would ride through the streets, wearing only her glorious, long hair. In doing so she risked everything, including her home and well-being.
 
Told with humor and precise attention to detail, Nicole Galland’s Godiva brings to life the adventures of the legendary lady, her husband and her best friend the Abbess Egdiva in thrilling detail. It’s an entertaining tale of courtly intrigue, deceit, and romance that is sure to captivate fans of literary and historical fiction.

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From the Publisher

Nicole Galland, author of The Fool’s Tale, turns her clever pen toward re-imagining the famous legend of Lady Godiva in this expertly crafted historical novel set in Anglo-Saxon England. A 12th-century noblewoman, Lady Godiva is infamous for riding naked through Coventry to relieve her people of her husband’s unfair and oppressive taxa...

From the Jacket

From the author of The Fool's Tale comes a brilliantly crafted retelling of the legend of Lady GodivaAccording to legend, Lady Godiva lifted the unfair taxation of her people by her husband, Leofric, Earl of Mercia, by riding through the streets of Coventry wearing only a smile. It's a story that's kept tongues wagging for nearly a tho...

Nicole Galland's five previous novels areThe Fool's Tale;Revenge of the Rose;Crossed;I, Iago, andGodiva. She writes a cheeky etiquette column for theMartha's Vineyard Times. She is married to actor Billy Meleady and owns Leuco, a dog of splendid qualities.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:544 pages, 8 × 5.3 × 0.82 inPublished:April 21, 2016Publisher:HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERSLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062026887

ISBN - 13:9780062026880

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Customer Reviews of Godiva: A Novel

Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from A light entertaining read Godiva Nicole Galland Nicole Galland, author of The Fool’s Tale, turns her clever pen toward re-imagining the famous legend of Lady Godiva in this expertly crafted historical novel set in Anglo-Saxon England. A 12th-century noblewoman, Lady Godiva is infamous for riding naked through Coventry to relieve her people of her husband’s unfair and oppressive taxation. Leofric, Earl of Mercia, said he would ease the tax burden if she would ride through the streets, wearing only her glorious, long hair. In doing so she risked everything, including her home and well-being. Told with humor and precise attention to detail, Nicole Galland’s Godiva brings to life the adventures of the legendary lady, her husband and her best friend the Abbess Egdiva in thrilling detail. It’s an entertaining tale of courtly intrigue, deceit, and romance that is sure to captivate fans of literary and historical fiction. Godiva by Nicole Galland. It is a novel meant to entertain. It’s a light, quick, read about the intriguing Lady Godiva who has been legendary in English history. It’s light on historical facts, but with just enough historical detail to bring the times to life. I loved the simple way the introduction was written. It helped explain a complex history regarding the tax in elegantly simple prose. The book then opens with Godiva using her sexual prowess to put an end to a dispute between her husband and a neighboring lord. It tainted my expectations of Lady Godiva and made her seem more of a strumpet than a wise and strong wife. It also sent a warning bell ringing in my mind because it made me think the book would turn out to be like one of those all too common, inexpensive, bodice ripper romances. Lucikly, as the novel progresses, Lady Godiva is given a little more substance. The novel was not encumbered with too many characters, so it was easy to read. I liked that very much. It allowed me to relax into the story without having to struggle to keep track of who is who. Much to my delight, the author introduced only those characters integral to the story. However, one character is missing according to her legend, and that is Peeping Tom, the one person who refused to avert his eyes and stole a look at her while she rode naked. Another fact that might have been a little distorted is legend says it was her husband who imposed the tax and who initiated her naked ride, however, in the novel it is her husband’s overlord, with Leofric against the display, but coming to her aid in helping her make it through. My favorite subplot was that of Godiva’s friend, Abbess Egdiva and the troubles she got into. The brilliance of the book is the chapters that pertain to Lady Godiva’s naked ride. I thought that was writing at its very best, gripping, descriptive, emotional – it had it all. There are a few flaws in the historical details, but for those readers who are more into the story than the history of the times, this will not be a problem. All in all, this was an interesting novel, not one of my favorites by this author, but good all the same.
Date published: 2013-07-23

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Editorial Reviews

Godiva is amusing, practical, lively, and relatable in this clever retelling of the legendarily naked lady’s story, Galland’s fifth novel. Filled to the brim with courtly intrigue, dangerous misapprehensions, crossings and double-crossings, and enough high humor to ensure at least some giggling through many portions...