A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver

A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver

For Ages: 10 - 14
  • 4
Eleanor of Aquitaine is in Heaven, waiting to learn whether or not her second husband, King Henry II of England, will be able to join her. Henry had died even before Eleanor, but he still had not won admission into Heaven. Waiting with Eleanor are Henry's mother, Matilda-Empress, and William the Marshal. A chance encounter with Abbot Suger, an old friend of Eleanor's from the time of her first marriage, starts the four of them remembering times past. Each person in turn tells a part of Eleanor's life, vividly illustrating the excitement of living in twelfth-century England and France, and especially the excitement of being Eleanor. Wife of two kings, mother of two others, Richard the Lion Heart and John, she set the tone of court life for her times, sponsored poets and musicians, established the legend of King Arthur as a romantic feature of English literature, set the Rules of Courtly Love, and helped rule a kingdom that spanned from Scotland to the Pyrenees. And she did all this in a time when a king could keep his queen a prisoner -- and did!
This book is a novel, fiction, fantasy even. But everything in it about Eleanor and her family and her times is true.
  • Atheneum Books for Young Readers | 
  • 208 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780689301117 | 
  • July 1973 | 
  • Grades 5 - 9

More Books from this Author

The E.L. Konigsburg Newbery Collection
Talk, Talk
The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World
Journey to an 800 Number

About the Author

E.L. Konigsburg
Photo Credit:

E.L. Konigsburg

E.L. Konigsburg is the only author to have won the Newbery Medal and be runner-up in the same year. In 1968, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler won the Newbery Medal and Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth was named a Newbery Honor Book. Almost thirty years later she won the Newbery Medal once again for The View From Saturday. She has also written and illustrated three picture books: Samuel Todd’s Book of Great Colors, Samuel Todd’s Book of Great Inventions, and Amy Elizabeth Explores Bloomingdale’s. In 2000 she wrote Silent to the Bone, which was named a New York Times Notable Book and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, among many other honors.

After completing her degree at Carnegie Mellon University, Ms. Konigsburg did graduate work in organic chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh. For several years she taught science at a private girls’ school. When the third of her three children started kindergarten, she began to write. She now lives on the beach in North Florida.