In Triumph's Wake

Royal Mothers, Tragic Daughters, and the Price They Paid for Glory

Julia P. Gelardi

St. Martin's Griffin

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“An excellent, comprehensive study of six fascinating women and the troubled times that shaped their lives.”—Publishers Weekly

Exhaustively researched and utterly compelling, In Triumph’s Wake is the story of three unusually strong women and the devastating consequences their decisions had on the lives of their equally extraordinary daughters.

Queen Isabella of Castile, Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, and Queen Victoria of England were respected and admired rulers whose legacies continue to be felt today.  Their daughters—Catherine of Aragon, Queen of England; Queen Marie Antoinette of France; and Vicky, the Empress Frederick of Germany—are equally legendary for the tragedies that befell them, their roles in history surpassed by their triumphant mothers.

Because of his doomed marriage to Queen Catherine, Henry VIII broke away from the Roman Catholic Church, triggering the English Reformation. To many, responsibility for the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror fell squarely upon Marie Antoinette. And Empress Frederick proved insufficient in getting Germany to rise to political maturity: under her son’s reign, the country plunged into the beginnings of world war. In Triumph’s Wake is the first book to bring together the poignant stories of these mothers and daughters in a single narrative.

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In Triumph's Wake
PART IQUEEN ISABELLA and CATHERINE OF ARAGON1CALLED TO RULEThe dramatic stories of three unparalleled sets of royal mothers and daughters--stories that span half a millennium--begin with the birth of Queen Isabella of Castile, "an extraordinary woman who was also an extraordinary monarch, one of the most powerful the world had ever known."1 The saga unfolds in the far southwest corner of Europe, some six centuries ago, on the Iberian Peninsula. There, on a melancholy, austere expanse of land known as Castile--a wide plateau in hues of bronze, gray, and green--Isabel of Portugal,

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Reviews

Praise for In Triumph's Wake

Praise for In Triumph's Wake:

“The unusual melding of Spanish, English, Austrian, French and Prussian history into one sweeping project is done with remarkable clarity and verve. Excerpts of her subjects' letters are integrated flawlessly into the sequence of events. Gelardi is also skilled in placing actions within the larger historical framework of international relations, as well as genetics—Gelardi traces the devastating effects of hemophilia on royal families in one of her most interesting tangents. The personal relationships portrayed are layered and complex, and tidbits regarding fashion and Queen Victoria's childhood love of dolls are not to be missed . . . an excellent, comprehensive study of six fascinating women and the troubled times that shaped their lives.”—Publishers Weekly

“Uniquely conceived, well-argued comparison study of three epochal matriarchs—Queen Isabella of Castile, Empress Maria Theresa and Queen Victoria—and the daughters who didn't measure up. Three sad stories make it clear that anxiety of influence made it impossible for the offspring of these great lady monarchs to meet their mothers' standards. . . . Gelardi delivers substantial, accessible European history.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Appealing narrative history. While these three royal mothers are forever associated with steely determination, great intelligence, and inspirationally successful reigns, their ill-fated daughters are just as ensconced in the roles of great tragic figures, frequently viewed as women battered by misfortune or, worse yet, brought down by their own personal failings. Gelardi seeks to humanize them as she tells these doubly sad stories.”—Library Journal

“Historian Julia Gelardi is passionate about bringing human drama to life in her books. She has done that with skill in In Triumph's Wake.”—Pioneer Press (Minnesota)

“The comparisons and contrasts she finds among these women are remarkable, and she deserves as much praise for seeing such parallels as she does for her excellent writing. Under her pen, these rulers aren't just dusty old bygones to learn about, but women we can admire and mourn. Her book is no dull, dry tome but a conversational piece that is both scholarly and an easy read.”—Roanoke Times


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About the Author

Julia P. Gelardi

Julia Gelardi is the author of Born to Rule and From Splendor to Revolution. Educated in the United States and Canada, she is an independent historian and author, currently living in Minnesota with her husband and two daughters.

Julia P. Gelardi

Julia P. Gelardi

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Available Formats and Book Details

In Triumph's Wake
Royal Mothers, Tragic Daughters, and the Price They Paid for Glory
Julia P. Gelardi

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin
December 2009
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312586034
ISBN10: 0312586035
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 448 pages, Includes two 8-page color photograph sections
$22.99

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
December 2009
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781466823686
ISBN10: 1466823682
432 pages, Includes two 8-page color photograph sections
$7.99
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