Falls the Shadow

Sharon Penman

26 July 2012
560 pages


Sharon Penman's Fall the Shadow brilliantly portrays the struggle for power in England in the Middle Ages.

Simon de Montfort was a man ahead of his time in the thirteenth century, a disinherited Frenchman who talked his way into an English earldom and marriage with a sister of the English king, Henry III. A charismatic, obstinate leader, Simon soon lost patience with the king's incompetence and inability to keep his word, and found himself the champion of the common people.

This is his story, and the story of Henry III, as weak and changeable as Simon was brash and unbending. It is a tale of opposing wills that would eventually clash in a storm of violence and betrayal. An irresistible saga that brings the pages of history completely, provocatively, and magnificently alive. Falls the Shadow is the second novel in the Welsh Princes Trilogy, following on from Here Be Dragons and the trilogy concludes with The Reckoning.

A marvelous literary and historical achievement . . . Impossible to put down
Absorbing. . . . [Penman] manages to illuminate the alien shadowland of the Middle Ages and populate it with vital characters whose politics and passions are as vivid as our own
A vivid portrait of a lost time . . . full of fascinating personality studies . . . Once you enter her world you're hooked