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Not to be coy, but I can’t tell you much about The Crown of Valencia without revealing spoilers from The Spanish Pearl. Just know that once again, Kate Vincent finds herself in a mess, both romantically and time travel-wise. Romance, betrayal, intrigue, disobedient children, and religious fanaticism pack this tense conclusion to the epic adventure begun in The Spanish Pearl.

The Crown of Valencia won a 2008 Golden Crown Literary Award.



Copyright © 2007 by Catherine Friend. Published by Bold Strokes Books (, November 2007, ISBN 978-1-933110-96-7

Reader Reviews | Excerpt <-previousbrowse books for adultsnext ->
Reviews from Readers back to top

Absolutely loved this book. You had my stomach in knots at times with all the twists and turns. You are really something . These two books are really keepers. Thanks so much. -- Bett

I just wanted to say thanks for these books. They were so very fun to read. I read both out loud to my partner, and just finished Crown a couple weekends ago. I read for hours, because we just had to find out what happened next. Your plots are engaging and unpredictable. --Jodi

i am in awe of all the complicated plot twists and turns you wrote, then your skill of making them seem plausible and finally putting them together for a good ending. i might also add making everything fit into what actually happened in 11th century spain was good work! and i love your humor! anyway, i was riveted to your book all wednesday afternoon so dinner was late and the dogs unfed but everyone just had to wait! --Janet

Well, I finally received my book Saturday afternoon, but was unable to dig in until Sunday. I expected it to be good of course since I love your writing style and sense of humor so much, but I was taken by surprise once again. The twists and turns throughout the book kept me frantically turning the pages trying to figure it all out. What can I say but another fantastic read. I love Kate and Elena, and having raised two teenagers, I can say that Arturo was just perfect. --Nancy

I cannot praise this book enough. This books lives up to everything I have come to expect from Catherine Friend's writing in The Spanish Pearl. review

Once I allowed myself to enter that fantasy world [The Spanish Pearl] I thoroughly enjoyed the story. Such is the case with this wonderful sequel. The aptly entitled Crown of Valencia is an easy-to-enjoy story delivering a little historical fiction entwined with a wonderful romance. review

It was as if I was addicted, I couldn't stop. I had to know what happened next and next again, until I finished the book. You had me so wrapped up in the story, it felt real to me. --Christine

I just finished reading The Crown of Valencia all in one day. I could not put it down except to rest and refocus my eyes for brief periods! (and the dogs had to be fed, of course.) ---Kris

I was commuting home from work while reading Crown and I had to hold back tears. I did not want to cry on the NYC subway. People would have thought I was nuts (although that's not so unusual here). Very few books have moved me like this.---Roberta

When I got home from work yesterday my copy was waiting for me. I was torn because I'm in graduate school and I had a homework assignment due...that I hadn't started yet. Well, I did the responsible thing and did my homework so it was around 9pm when I picked up your book...I proceeded to read the book until I finished it at 4:30 am knowing that I had to get up for work no later than 6:30 am. Let me just say that it's a good thing I don't operate heavy machinery. ---Lisa

Has a twist around every bend. Just about the time you're thinking "well what else could happen"...something else does. Tough times and tough women who do what needs to be review


Excerpt back to top

From Chapter One - Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Bold Strokes Books.

The expanding dough made an awful sucking sound as it overflowed the oven lip, then landed with a wet plop on the growing pile on the ground. What a waste. What a stupid, stupid waste. This village had few resources as it was, and I just wasted half a bag of flour and all that yeast and Marta’s eggs, not to mention the generous dollop of honey I’d added, hoping to surprise Elena.

I had no business trying to bake bread. I gripped the stick and began smacking it against the oven’s domed clay top. “Stupid, stupid, stupid,” I yelled.

“So, is this how you bake bread in your century?” Elena whispered in my ear. My body quickly responded by flushing warm and going all fluttery in my belly. That Elena could affect me like this irritated me quite a bit, actually. I’d always been a practical woman, not one who went all weak in the knees, and right now I was in no mood to be needled.

I whirled and stomped my foot so hard a glob of dough splattered against her dusty boot. She stepped back, all legs and leather and wide smile. “Very funny,” I snapped. “You know very well it’s not.” I pushed back a lock of my hair and felt wet dough streak across my cheek. Damn it. I slid into English. “No, in my century we have ovens and electricity. And microwaves! I used to live a civilized life.” I waved the stick around, flinging bits of dough everywhere.

Elena took another step back, her crystal blue eyes narrowed with mirth, which only fed my frenzy. I flung the stick to the ground and switched back to Spanish. “Damn it, if you want bread so badly, you can just bake it yourself.” Why did I have to love this blasted woman so?


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