Devil’s Brood On Sale October 7th!

Devil's BroodThe long-awaited and highly anticipated final volume in Penman’s trilogy of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine—a tumultuous conclusion to this timeless story of love, power, ambition, and betrayal.

Where the second novel in the trilogy, Time And Chance, dealt with the extraordinary politics of the twelfth century, climaxing with the murder of Thomas Becket and Henry’s confrontation with the Church and self-imposed exile to Ireland, Devil’s Brood centers on the implosion of a family. And because it is a royal family whose domains span the English Channel and whose alliances encompass the Christian world, that collapse will have dire consequences. This is a story of betrayal as Henry’s three eldest sons and his wife enter into a rebellion against him, aligning themselves with his bitterest enemy, King Louis of France. But it is also the story of a great king whose brilliance forged an empire but whose personal blind spots led him into the most serious mistake of his life.

Sharon Kay Penman has created a novel of tremendous power, as two strong-willed, passionate people clash, a family divides, and a marriage ends in all but name. Curiously, it is a novel without villains—only flawed human beings caught up in misperceptions and bad judgment calls. Most devastating to Henry was not his sons’ rebellion but his wife’s betrayal in joining them. How could it happen that two people whose love for each other was all consuming end up as bitter adversaries? That is the heart of Penman’s tale in Devil’s Brood.

Read an Excerpt

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68 Responses to “Devil’s Brood On Sale October 7th!”

  1. Elizabeth Says:

    Is there any chance any of your books are coming out with an audio version? I’ve only read the Henry and Eleanor book. I would love to read your Welsh books and probably the mysteries as well, but I currently have little time to actually sit and read a book. However, I am able to read three or four a week as audio books on my phone that I play while driving and cleaning primarily.

    I’d love to be able to sit and read them (and am actually reading Here Be Dragons right now as a paper copy), but with work and family responsibilities, it just seems unlikely.

    I’m a big fan of the downloadable audio books at places like or Amazon, but even cds would be a great option.

    Crossing my fingers,


  2. glenn menish Says:

    I have read ALL your books. I am very glad you felt well enough to finish “Devil’s Brood.” Sorry to hear you are sick again. Please get better.
    My favorite of your books is “Sun in Splendor.” So I know there is no chance of a ‘follow-up’ to that. But are you going to continue the ‘mysteries’ series?
    Once again I hope your recovery is swift and your health returns you to a pleasant life.
    Sincerely, glenn menish, fan
    PS: I had always read NON-fiction, then one day I ask a helper at a book store for a work of ‘fiction,’ maybe something I heard of that was called a historical novel.
    She handed me “Sun in Splendor.” I am very grateful.

  3. Eleanor Deberry Says:

    Hello Sharon,

    I’m sorry to hear that you were ill, but happy that you are on the mend.

    Your books have helped me to get straight on this confusing period of English history, and have been very enjoyable as well. Your characters are so well drawn and believable that they almost, almost make me really suspend my disbelief–but then again I say to myself furiously–I know she is on to something; I’m certain she is as close as one can get from this distance, but what were these fascinating people like–really, really? If we could only go back in time to observe for a little while.

    But enough whining. Thank you for being as close as I’ll get to a time machine to take me back.

    Take care,

    Eleanor Deberry

  4. Sam Says:

    Being a ardent reader of historical fiction, my happenstance of reading Here Be Dragons started our journey.

    Since then my local library gets out the fire extinguisher for the roaring path I leave to attain more of your wonderful works.

    Thank you, your talent has also guided my steps as an aspiring author. (Your manuscript story…I lost my first when I didn’t back it up…yikes!)

    May your road to recovery be strewn with petals of good health.

  5. Sarah Says:

    My father first introduced me to your books in 2000. Since then I have read all of them and eagerly anticipated Devil’s Brood–which I just finished. Another great by my favorite historical fiction writer! I also want to thank you for getting me interested in the genre in the first place. Your characters and stories are so well written that I can picture them perfectly! I now search out other historical fiction and continue to love learning about another time and place–and if other books are anything like yours, then I am also highly entertained. I have also reread most of your books–something I don’t often do.

    I hope your health improves and I look forward to more of your insight into the middle ages (I would’ve loved the 10 page author’s note!). Thank you for your books.

  6. Sharon Kay Penman Says:

    I am sorry, but none of my books are available as audio books, and there are no plans to do so. It would be difficult to record books of such length without having to edit them drastically. My books are available, however, in audio format from the Library of Congress, as I’ve had phone conversations with a very nice lady who wanted to make sure she was pronouncing the Welsh names correctly!

  7. Sharon Kay Penman Says:

    I do hope to continue the mystery series. Justin de Quincy is so much easier to deal with than my royal prima donnas like Henry and Eleanor! I’d intended to do another mystery after Devil’s Brood, but my publisher preferred that I do Lionheart next, which does make sense.
    Thank you for the kind words about Sunne in Splendour. We optioned the film rights to Sunne last year to a British production company, so keep your fingers crossed that they can secure financing! After so many centuries in Shakespeare’s shadow, Richard could certainly use a change in luck.

  8. Eulalia Says:

    You write very well.

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  10. AJ Says:

    I have just finished reading Devil’s Brood, actually I was the first person to read our library’s copy. As a member of the SCA (Society for Creative
    Anacronism) I pretty much devour historical novels. You mentioned
    other historical novelists…our household has read all of Ellis Peters
    Brother Cadfael series as well as her books written as Edith Pargeter.
    I was also caught up in Ken Follet’s book ‘Pillars of The Earth’ and it’s
    sequel. Can I add Lindsey Davis’s Roman mysteries to your other Roman
    authors? Don’t forget Paul Doherty’s Medieval, Egyptian and Roman.
    Actually I could list a dozed or more others but that would take a lot of
    space!! I hope you keep writing more!

  11. Myrna Astor Says:

    Just finished Devil’s Brood and as with all your other books, hated to come to an end. I immediately ran to the library and took out Here Be Dragons (although I read it and your others many years ago) . You know, I can’t name a favorite. I LOVED THEM ALL. You introduced me to the middle ages and have been scouring the library for years since then. I found Jean Plaidy covers the era very well as well as authors you’ve already mentioned. Also Phillipa Gregory(a little later, but excellent). You did say at the end of Devil’s Brood that you had ten more pages that you would send if requested re: more about Hal’s death, etc. Please do send whatever you can. I hope you continue recovering from your mysterious illness and write, write, write!!!

  12. Michael Says:

    Hi, Sharon…

    Enjoy your books very much. All of them. I’m very very picky when it comes to historical fiction, because I really look for accuracy, especially in this time period. You’re superb in that respect. It’s what makes your books so enjoyable.

    All of history is interpretative. To my mind, your view of history is as valid as any dry textbook. I can deal with both, but prefer yours.

    Frankly, I’m a Lancastrian sympathizer. I wish someone would do one of my favorite historical characters, Jasper Tudor, justice as you have done others. In a world in which men readily betrayed family, friends, peers, lieges and the girl next door for advancement, Jasper’s loyalty, and all he went through, is a really neat testatment to honor.

    Far be it for me to recommend to thee, but two I will: Dorothy Dunnett’s “King Hereafter”, a really brilliant retelling of MacBeth, and Manuel Uijica (?) “Bomarzo”. On the latter, if you ever go to Rome, just north of it is the Garden of Monsters in Bomarzo, the story revolves around the hunchbacked Duke of Bomarzo, an Orsini of the Orsini, who actually built the Garden.

    “Pour the Dark Wine” tells the story of Henry VIII’s court through the eyes of the Seymours…not only Jane, but her brothers as well.

    Anyway, I’m glad to hear you’re feeling better. Devil’s Brood was a really great read…the kind of book I can just kick back and read for five hours straight. And I did ;-)

  13. Lynette Smulders Says:

    I have read all of your books, most of them twice, which is not something I do very often. I prefer your mainstream works to the mystery novels, and have two favourites, being “Sunne in Splendour” and “Here be Dragons”. You are my favourite author, I do hope you conquer your illness and resume writing prolifically! I am desperate for Devil’s Brood to be published in paperback so that I can read it. I read primarily historical fiction, and look for the authenticity which is your hallmark. I love Author’s Notes (the longer the better) and feel deprived when the author declines to expand! You create very believable characters that feel as if they belong in their time. I wish you long life and may you never tire of writing. Thank you for so many enthralling hours.

  14. Luis Says:

    Sharon,,You are a genious. I have all your books and I can’t tell you how excited I was when by chance I went to the bookstore this past November and on my birthday found the book that I was waiting for for years, “Devil’s Brood”. I went home and read the entire novel in less than 2 days. Your portrayal of Henry was extraordinary and with each of the rebellions by his sons I felt like I was aging with him. So much pain, he truly tried so hard. I do believe you were correct in his portrayal. I was surprise that actually I felt Eleanor was in the wrong, since because of you, She has been my favorite Queen of all time.I cried and I laugh,,,It was a powerful example of a superb writer at her best. I can’t wait to continue enjoying your work for many years to come. Please keep writing, your work help so many of us,,ad I love you and respect you for that. God bless you.

  15. Helen Bohl Says:

    Dear Sharon, Thank you so much for your wonderful, novels. I finally found The Devils Brood last month. After reading it ,had to go back to The Saints and Time and Chance.
    Then again back to the Wales where I cried through all 3 books for the 4th time. I cannot wait for your next book,which sounds like it will be Richard the Lionheart. Would you ever concider a book about Mary Queen of Scots? My favorite book on her is Immortal Queen by Elizabeth Byrd. I do hope that your healt improves. Thank you.

  16. Maxine Levaren Says:

    Has anyone read Penmarric, Cashelmara or Wheel of Fortune by Susan Howatch? They’re updated (late 19th early 20th century) retellings of the Plantagenets (with some poetic license of course!)

  17. Sarah Johnston Says:

    Hi Sharon,
    All I can say is that you have made this fascinating era in history come to life for me. I have devoured your novels over and over and have even bought second copies as I’ve worn my original copies out !
    I always scour my local bookstores for your tapestries and was delighted to purchase Devils Brood for my personal Christmas present this year, it was delicious!!!
    Sorry to hear of your illness….please get well quickly so we can continue the journey….
    Kindest regards, Sarah

  18. David Anderson Says:

    I just finished “Devil’s Brood” and thought it was fascinating and hard to put down. I enjoy medieval history and appreciate that you have gone to such effort to make your novels as factually accurate as possible. This was my first book of yours and I look forward to reading others. Keep up the great work!

  19. james watson Says:

    HelloSharon,After returningfrom my native Northeast(UK)…..We Mywife Sue,Pulled off the A1,…….And drove too Coverdale,….it was Afternew years Day And Snowing?……..At the top of Middlham Keep!…..I took in the Veiw!!And My Imagination was really in Sync! Edward? ..Richard Etc. So, I rebought Sunne In Splendor,……And Asked For It Too Be Stamped??…..The Lady Was Suprised??……So I love this Book,..EvenMore,Thank.youSo much,Also my Parents Live Near Kenilworth, And I feel Brans Anguish,…….For His Father(Ever thought of writing—-About “Arther”..(I know where hes Buried)??Many Kind Regards…Seriously!!. James.

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  21. maurean Says:

    hi do you release audio books

    thank you

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  24. Lisa George Says:

    I too, am an avid audiobook listener. I love historical fiction, and the longer the better for an audiobook. I frequently listen to 30-40 hour unabridged audiobooks. PLEASE, PLEASE reconsider authorizing your books to be released (UNABRIDGED) in an audio format!!

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    I’m sorry to hear that you think it would be to much to edit etc. I tend to only listen to unabridged versions! I’d like to offer my services to read the Welsh books! I have a slight west country twang but am certain I’d do a cracking job. Please, lets hear it for audio!

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