Keeper of the King's Secrets
The personal artist to King Henry Tudor, Susanna Horenbout is sought by the queen and ladies of the court for her delicate, skilled portraits. But now someone from her past is pulling her into a duplicitous game where the consequence of failure is war. Soon, Susanna and her betrothed, the King’s most dangerous courtier, are unraveling a plot that would shatter Europe. And at the heart of it is a magnificent missing diamond. . . .
With John Parker at her side, Susanna searches for the diamond and those responsible for its theft, their every step dogged by a lethal assassin. Finding the truth means plunging into the heart of the court’s most bitter infighting, surviving the harrowing labyrinth of Fleet Prison—and then coming face-to-face with the most dangerous enemy of all.
IN A TREACHEROUS COURT by Michelle Diener
Reading Group Guide
While en route to England from the Netherlands, royally commissioned artist Susanna Horenbout discovers a secret that could jeopardize the reign of King Henry VIII. As she and John Parker, one of the monarch’s most enigmatic courtiers, evade the ruthless enemy seeking to silence her, they become entwined in a deadly plot that reaches to the upper echelons of the royal inner circle. In In a Treacherous Court, Michelle Diener brings two of Tudor England’s most fascinating, lesser known historical figures vividly to life in a dazzling tale of intrigue and romance.
TOPICS AND QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
1. As an artist commissioned by King Henry VIII, Susanna journeys to England for professional reasons. Discuss the personal circumstances that also compel her to leave Ghent. Why does she feel she has been “exiled” from her home?
2. The story takes place over a period of several days, during which Susanna and Parker go from just meeting each other to becoming engaged. How did you react to this rapid progression? Why do they trus see more