We are welcoming Elizabeth St. John to the website and to our Facebook group on Monday, November 14th, in a featured spotlight and author takeover day!
Get to know Elizabeth and her novels, ask questions, and more!
Follow the Author Takeover at The Historical Fiction Club on Facebook
Elizabeth St.John’s critically acclaimed historical fiction novels tell the stories of her ancestors: extraordinary women whose intriguing kinship with England's kings and queens brings an intimately unique perspective to Medieval, Tudor, and Stuart times.
Inspired by family archives and residences from Lydiard Park to the Tower of London, Elizabeth spends much of her time exploring ancestral portraits, diaries, and lost gardens. And encountering the occasional ghost. But that’s another story.
The Godmother's Secret
If you knew the fate of the Princes in the Tower would you tell? Or forever keep the secret?
May 1483: The Tower of London. When King Edward IV dies and Lady Elysabeth Scrope delivers her young godson, Edward V, into the Tower of London to prepare for his coronation, she is engulfed in political turmoil. Within months, the prince and his brother have disappeared, Richard III is declared king, and Elysabeth’s sister Margaret Beaufort conspires with her son Henry Tudor to invade England and claim the throne.
Desperate to protect her godson, Elysabeth battles the intrigue, betrayal and power of the last medieval court, defying her Yorkist husband and her Lancastrian sister under her godmother’s sacred oath to keep Prince Edward safe. Bound by blood and rent by honour, Elysabeth is torn between the crown and her family, knowing that if her loyalty is questioned, she is in peril of losing everything—including her life.
Were the princes murdered by their uncle, Richard III? Did Margaret Beaufort mastermind their disappearance to usher in the Tudor dynasty? Or did the young boys vanish for their own safety? Of anyone at the royal court, Elysabeth has the most to lose–and the most to gain–by keeping secret the fate of the Princes in the Tower.
Inspired by England’s most enduring historical mystery, Elizabeth St.John blends her family history with known facts and centuries of speculation to create an intriguing story about what happened to the Princes in the Tower.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/thegodmotherssecret
By Love Divided
London, 1630. Widowed and destitute, Lucy St.John is fighting for survival and makes a terrible choice to secure a future for her children. Worse still, her daughter Luce rejects the royal court and a wealthy arranged marriage, and falls in love with a charismatic soldier. As England tumbles toward bloody civil war, Luce’s beloved brother Allen chooses to fight for the king as a cavalier. Allen and Luce are swept up in the chaos of war as they defend their opposing causes and protect those they love.
Will war unite or divide them? And will they find love and a home to return to—if they survive the horror of civil war. In the dawn of England’s great rebellion, love is the final battleground.
A true story based on surviving memoirs, court papers, and letters of Elizabeth St.John's family, By Love Divided continues the story of Lucy St.John, the Lady of the Tower. This powerfully emotional novel tells of England's great divide and the heart-wrenching choices one family faces.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/bylovedivided
The Lady of the Tower
London, 1609. When Lucy St.John, a beautiful highborn orphan at the court of King James, is seduced by the Earl of Suffolk, she never imagines the powerful enemy she creates in his beloved sister, the Countess of Rochester. Or that her own sister Barbara would betray her and force Lucy to leave the court in disgrace. Spirited, educated, and skilled in medicine and precious remedies, Lucy fights her way back into society, and through an unexpected love match, becomes mistress of the Tower of London. Living inside the walls of the infamous prison, she defies plague, political intrigues and tragic executions to tend to aristocratic prisoners and criminals alike.
Now married into the immensely powerful Villiers family, Barbara unites with the king’s favorite, the Duke of Buckingham, to raise the fortunes of Lucy and her family to dizzying heights. But with great wealth comes treachery, leaving Lucy to fight for her survival—and her honor—in a world of deceit and debauchery.
Elizabeth St.John’s critically acclaimed debut novel tells the true story of her ancestress Lucy through her family’s surviving diaries, letters, and court papers. Lucy’s personal friendships with historical figures such as Sir Walter Raleigh and the Stuart kings brings a unique perspective to the history of seventeenth century England.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/ladyofthetower
Written in the Stars
London, 1649. Horrified eyewitnesses to King Charles’s bloody execution, Royalists Nan Wilmot and Frances Apsley plot to return the king’s exiled son to England’s throne, while their radical cousin Luce, the wife of king-killer John Hutchinson, rejoices in the new republic’s triumph. Nan exploits her high-ranking position as Countess of Rochester to manipulate England’s great divide, flouting Cromwell and establishing a Royalist spy network; while Frances and her husband Allen join the destitute prince in Paris’s Louvre Palace to support his restoration. As the women work from the shadows to topple Cromwell’s regime, their husbands fight openly for the throne on England’s bloody battlefields.But will the return of the king be a victory, or destroy them all? Separated by loyalty and bound by love, Luce, Nan and Frances hold the fate of England—and their family—in their hands. A true story based on surviving memoirs of Elizabeth St.John's family.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/writteninthestars
Counterpoint: Barbara, Lady Villiers
Barbara Villiers has always despised her sister Lucy, and when Theo Howard, Earl of Suffolk, fell in love with her, Barbara thought she'd die of jealousy. Instead, she decided to get even by befriending someone even more scandalous than herself, Theo's sister, Frances Howard, Countess of Somerset. Unfortunately, Frances was then imprisoned in the Tower of London, accused of murder, and Barbara had to find a way to turn this to her advantage - and continue her vendetta against Lucy. A sister may be loving, loyal, a dear friend. Or, she may wish to destroy everything you hold dear. This is a counterpoint to my novel about Lucy, The Lady of the Tower. Barbara Villiers Palmer is one of the most famous courtesans in history. Mistress to Charles II and mother of five of his children, Lady Castlemaine's notoriety is legendary. This is the story of her namesake and grandmother, Barbara St.John Villiers. The apple did not fall far from the tree.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/ladyvilliers
Counterpoint: Theo, Earl of Suffolk
Theo Howard, Earl of Suffolk is torn. Betrothed to a child to satisfy his family dynasty, he longs for the freedom to make his own choice. And when he attends a lavish party at his family's newly-restored palace, he is immediately attracted to Lucy, a beautiful young lavender-seller. But in this enchanted world of Shakespeare's Midsummer's Night Dream, all is not as it appears. Theo's headstrong sister Frances is determined to sabotage her own arranged marriage, and aided by the cunning of Frances and her friend Barbara St.John, perhaps Theo can find his own path to happiness and true love.
When I wrote The Lady of the Tower, the story revealed itself in the narrative of my ancestress, Lucy St.John. But, as with all novels, other characters appeared, and their voices grew strong and insistent, demanding their own story be told.
A counterpoint is a melody played in conjunction with another, or an opposing viewpoint in an argument. Our lives are complex, and each one of us carries within us a counterpoint to another’s story. A man may fall in love and declare eternal fidelity. Or, he may be tricked into marrying another. By your sister.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/earlofsuffolk
Counterpoint: Henry, the King's Cavalier
A man may think his life is only measured by battles fought for the king. Until he meets a woman worth fighting for.
Henry Wilmot. Cavalier. Seasoned soldier. Grieving widower. On the eve of battle he is sent by the king to requisition arms. What he did not expect was that the supplies were a gift from a feisty and attractive widow who was hiding her own Royalist beliefs in plain sight. Even more alarming was that his quest took him into the heart of an enemy Parliamentarian household. Will Henry survive the fight of his life? And will Nan remember him if he does?
A counterpoint is a melody played in conjunction with another, or an opposing viewpoint in an argument. Our lives are complex, and each one of us carries within us a counterpoint to another’s story.
Buy Here: https://geni.us/thekingscavalier
Betrayal: Historical Stories
"Loyalty breaks as easily as a silken thread."
Misplaced trust, power hunger, emotional blackmail, and greed haunt twelve characters from post-Roman Britain to the present day. And betrayal by family, lover, comrade can be even more devastating.
Read twelve tales by twelve accomplished writers who explore these historical yet timeless challenges.
AD455—Roman leader Ambrosius is caught in a whirlpool of shifting allegiances AD940—Alyeva and cleric Dunstan navigate the dangers of the Anglo Saxon court 1185—Knight Stephan fights for comradeship, duty, and honour. But what about love? 1330—The powerful Edmund of Kent enters a tangled web of intrigue 1403—Thomas Percy must decide whether to betray his sovereign or his family 1457—Estelle is invited to the King of Cyprus’s court, but deception awaits 1483—Has Elysabeth made the right decision to bring Prince Edward to London? 1484—Margaret Beaufort contemplates the path to treason 1577—Francis Drake contends with disloyalty at sea 1650—Can James Hart, Royalist highwayman, stop a nemesis destroying his friend? 1718—Pirate Annie Bonny, her lover Calico Jack, and a pirate hunter. Who will win? 1849/present—Carina must discover her ancestor’s betrayer in Italy or face ruin.