Mary Tudor discovers a less than loving side to her elder brother, Henry VIII, when she refuses to marry the aged King Louis XII of France. Mary is in love with Charles Brandon and longs to marry him. But after being alternately cajoled and threatened, Mary gives in to Henry's wishes. In France, Louis' heir, Francis, ardently pursues Mary. But when Louis dies, Mary, in widowed seclusion, is at the mercy of a Francis heedless of the dangers of fathering his own usurper. Then Henry plans another match for her...This impressive and moving novel sheds light on a little known royal figure manipulated like so many others by the despotic Henry VIII.