Something Shady Going On Here

In my never-ending quest for seriously obscure novels about Edward II, a Google search led me to a list of historical novels that appeared to be from the early 20th century. There, I found one called In the Shadow of the Crown by a mysterious person called “Bidden.”

An Amazon search revealed no book by Bidden of this name. I knew, of course, that Jean Plaidy’s recently reissued historical novel by that name (about Mary Tudor) would turn up. What I wasn’t expecting, however, was how many others did:

Shadow of the Crown by Craig Mills
Shadow of the Crown by Susan Bowden
Crown of Shadows (Coldfire Trilogy, Final Volume) by C. S. Friedman
The Crown and the Shadow: The Story of Françoise d’Aubigné, Marquise de Maintenon by Pamela Hill
Shadow of the Crown: A Story of Malta by Ivy May Bolton
Crown of Shadows: An Anti-historical Play by Rodolfo Usigli
(Sadly, there’s no description for this last entry, so I’m–appropriately enough–in the dark as to what an anti-historical play is.)

To make matters even shadier, Nicholas Carter also wrote a series called Shadow on the Crown. Not to be outdone, Ulverscroft reprinted a number of historical novels about royal figures. It called this large-print series Shadows of the Crown

So, plenty of shady characters here. But where’s Bidden?

8 thoughts on “Something Shady Going On Here”

  1. At first, I read the last title as being the “Anti-Historical Playboy”, which conjured many strange images in my head.

    The one about Madame de Maintenon actually sounds very interesting to me. I’ve recently been on a reading binge about the court of Louis XIV, and I’m frankly surprised that there is such a dearth of historical fiction about this very fascinating period of history.

  2. Susan Higginbotham

    Thanks for stopping by, Deirdre! I’d like to meet the anti-historical playboy myself! I don’t know much about Louis XIV, I’m afraid, but I imagine he would be interesting. Isn’t the new Antonia Fraser book about him?

    Have you ever read any Pamela Hill?

  3. Now I’m afraid to give in the titles of my NiPs – heaven knows how many books with variants of my titles will pop up. 😉

    I obsess about my titles enough already, I don’t need any worries about similar titles added.

  4. Yup, the new Antonia Fraser book (which I just picked up the other day, but haven’t read yet), is indeed about Louis XIV, or rather, the women in his life (of which there were many) and is titled, appropriately enough “Love and Louis XIV: The Women in the Life of the Sun King”.

    Haven’t read any Pamela Hill yet, but her name sounds vaguely familar.

  5. Some of Pamela Hill’s novels are quite good (imho), others are so-so. I haven’t read her Mme de Maintenon novel.

    I also looked up the Bidden novel on OCLC’s WorldCat and it was nowhere to be found. Hmm.

  6. Susan:

    Do you think that “Bidden” might be somebody misremembering “Bowden”? That jumped out at me looking at your list.

  7. Susan Higginbotham

    Thanks, all! I’ve looked again, and now I can’t even find the site where I saw the mysterious Bidden. Maybe it was Bowden, or maybe it was all a dream.

    I ran across a Pamela Hill at the library sale today (The King’s Vixen) but decided to give it a pass.

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