A CONSTANT HEART
by: Siri Mitchell
published in 2008
Marget Barnardsen seems to lead a charmed life. She is intelligent, beautiful and bound to marry the Earl of Lytham. But for some reason both her new husband and Queen Elizabeth despise her. Desperate to win her husband's heart, she'll do whatever it takes to discover why and capture the love of a man bound to the queen.
Yes, every now and then I do read a book that isn't fantasy. I've been trying to find a good YA historical fiction, and I think this qualifies, though Marget is married, which is unusual in YA. This is a book for mature teens because there are many references to sex, including the consummation of a loveless marriage and several propositions of affairs. However, it is mostly implied and the main characters try very hard to do what is right.
As silly as it might seem, the most thrilling parts of this book for me were the face paint and hair products. I couldn't stop reading, I was so desperate for her to realize that the mercury and lead laced products were destroying her health, beauty and even more important things. It made me take a second look at the chemicals in my own life. A Constant Heart is a fascinating glimpse into the life of a courtier during Queen Elizabeth's reign. I look forward to reading more by Siri Mitchell.