Monday, September 8, 2014

Blog Tour (Review): Inglorious Royal Marriages by Leslie Carroll

Title: Inglorious Royal Marriages: A Demi-Millennium of Unholy Mismatrimony
Leslie Carroll
Publisher: NAL Trade (Penguin)
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Acquired Via: Historical Fiction Blog Tours

It’s no secret that the marriages of monarchs are often made in hell. Here are some of the most spectacular mismatches in five hundred years of royal history...

In a world where many kings, queens, and princes lacked nothing but true love, marital mismatches could bring out the baddest, boldest behavior in the bluest of bloodlines. Margaret Tudor, her niece Mary I, and Catherine of Braganza were desperately in love with chronically unfaithful husbands, but at least they weren’t murdered by them, as were two of the Medici princesses were. King Charles II’s beautiful, high-spirited sister “Minette” wed Louis XIV’s younger brother, who wore more makeup and perfume than she did. Forced to wed her boring, jug-eared cousin Ferdinand, Marie of Roumania—a granddaughter of Queen Victoria—proved herself one of the heroines of World War I by using her prodigious personal charm to regain massive amounts of land during the peace talks at Versailles.

Brimming with outrageous real-life stories of royal marriages gone wrong, this is an entertaining, unforgettable book of dubious matches doomed from the start.

Praise for Leslie Carroll’s Royal Books

An irresistible combination of People magazine and the History Channel.” —Chicago Tribune (5 Stars)

“Thoroughly enjoyable.” —Booklist

“For those who tackled Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall, and can’t get enough of the scandal surrounding Henry VIII’s wives, [Notorious Royal Marriages is] the perfect companion book.” —

My Review

If I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times - I love history. I don't even mind non-fiction when I'm not in school. That being said, Inglorious Royal Marriages: A Demi-Millennium of Unholy Mismatrimony is probably my favorite non-fiction read in a long time because when royals mix with history, I'm like a moth being drawn to fire.

Inglorious Royal Marriages goes through about four and a half centuries of royal matrimony, featuring quite a few well-known historical figures. (It does end well before modern day, so you won't be seeing any Charles & Di.) I've done my own research on some of the royals in the book in my own studies, so I really like that Leslie Carroll shared the misrepresentation of various royals in history and then the truth behind it. She used an extensive number of primary sources in her research for Inglorious Royal Marriages (found at the back of the book), and that lends a great deal of credibility to her work.

Thanks to Carroll being so in depth about her royal research, I didn't have to feel guilty about indulging in the book. Like most Americans, I am utterly fascinated by royals and monarchies. It doesn't matter to me whether it's past or present, I want to read everything there is about those lucky enough to be born with a title. Inglorious Royal Marriages gives me plenty to satiate my appetite for their dirty laundry, which is presented very tastefully. Well, there's not much tasteful that can be done with a husband who strangles his wife with a dog collar or another who calls his older wife his "dear and beloved aunt", but it just makes for a good time.

One thing that may turn readers off a little from Inglorious Royal Marriages is the fact that the book does not read like fiction or have a lot of suspense or tension. I really enjoy reading history however it's presented, but the recitation of facts may be a bit dull for some readers.

For me, Inglorious Royal Marriages was both a really fun read as well as a potential source and source-finder for me when I continue in obtaining the next level of my history degree. I love non-fiction of the nature, and Leslie Carroll is definitely an author whose work I will be buying and reading in the future.

- 4/5 Stars -

Buy Links
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-a-Million | Indiebound

About the Author

Leslie Carroll is the author of several works of historical nonfiction, women’s fiction, and, under the pen names Juliet Grey and Amanda Elyot, is a multipublished author of historical fiction. Her nonfiction titles include Royal Romances, Royal Pains, Royal Affairs, and Notorious Royal Marriages. She is also a classically trained professional actress with numerous portrayals of virgins, vixens, and villainesses to her credit, and is an award-winning audio book narrator.

A frequent commentator on royal romances and relationships, Leslie has been interviewed by numerous publications, including, USA Today, the Australian Broadcasting Company, and NPR, and she was a featured royalty historian on CBS nightly news in London during the royal wedding coverage of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. She also appears as an expert on the love lives of Queen Victoria, Marie Antoinette, Catherine the Great, and Napoleon on the television series “The Secret Life of [fill in the name of famous figure]” for Canada’s History Channel. Leslie and her husband, Scott, divide their time between New York City and Washington, D.C.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 1
Review at Flashlight Commentary

Tuesday, September 2
Review at Book Lovers Paradise
Interview at Scandalous Women

Wednesday, September 3
Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Tapestry

Thursday, September 4
Spotlight & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Friday, September 5
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time

Monday, September 8
Review & Giveaway at Bibliophilia, Please

Tuesday, September 9
Review at Oh, For the Hook of a Book
Spotlight at Princess of Eboli

Wednesday, September 10
Interview at Oh, For the Hook of a Book

Thursday, September 11
Review at The Lit Bitch
Spotlight & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Connection

Monday, September 15
Guest Post & Giveaway at Let Them Read Books

Tuesday, September 16
Spotlight & Giveaway at Reading Lark

Wednesday, September 17
Review & Giveaway at A Bookish Affair

Saturday, September 20
Review at WTF Are You Reading?

Tuesday, September 23
Review & Giveaway at The Maiden’s Court

Wednesday, September 24
Review & Giveaway at Broken Teepee
Review & Giveaway at To Read or Not to Read

Thursday, September 25
Review at Bookish
Review at Historical Fiction Obsession

Friday, September 26
Review at The Musings of ALMYBNENR
Review & Giveaway at The True Book Addict


Enter to win a copy of Inglorious Royal Marriages by Leslie Carroll!
Ends at 12:01am EST on September 28th

a Rafflecopter giveaway
To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing That I received a copy of the novel from the publisher through Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours in exchange for an unbiased review. It has in no way affected the outcome. All expressed opinions are awesome, honest, and courtesy of me.


  1. Replies
    1. William is a tad older than me, so I was barely old enough to understand what was going on when they were divorced. It was so sad the way their relationship unraveled.

  2. So many favorites.............Love William and Catherine! Charles and Diana's wedding was what got me so interested in the British Royals when I was in junior high. I love to read about Henry the 8th and all of his wives!!

    1. Me, too! And I'm so excited that they announced the upcoming baby! *squee* I wasn't around for Charles and Di's wedding, but you know I've seen the clips! And, of course, I was up at 3am to watch Will and Kate get married. Reading about the Tudors is some of my favorite reading, as well. :-)

  3. My favorite royal marriage is William and Kate. I love hearing about them and their baby George. Thanks for having the giveaway.

    1. You're welcome, and how excited are you about being on Royal Baby Watch again?!

  4. I think the Romanovs were an interesting royal couple :)

    Thank you for the chance to win!

    1. You're welcome! And I agree about the Romanovs, but their ending was so sad.

  5. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. I just love them.

  6. My favorite royal marriage is William and Kate. They are such a lovely couple.

  7. I really like Will and Kate, and also Frederik and Mary of Denmark.

  8. My favorite is Victoria and Albert


You are going to put words in my box?! *squeezes you* Now I shall stalk YOUR blog!