More like 4.5 stars.
Very clever and detailed 'modern' interpretation of the lives of the English historical figures Edward (AKA The Black Prince), Joan (AKA The Fair Maid of Kent), John of Gaunt, Richard II, Henry IV and Henry V. The cast come alive in this multi-generational saga that encompasses everything from scandal, lust, murder, sodomy, drunkenness, abuse, illegitimacy, jealously, madness and extortion spanning the years 1913 to 1966.
I seriously loved how the author wove the historical facts into a riveting story which gave a great psychological and sympathetic insight into the characters. There were no heros or villains just people doing the best they could as the actions of earlier generations echoed down the years. Wonderfully salacious, and satisfyingly dark & dysfunctional.
Another great chunkster buddy read with my good friend Anna :-).