The vel, which will evoke as many laughs as tears, begins in 1557 when a prematurely aged, ill, and very irritable Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, (Carlos I of Spain and always kwn as Carlos), retires to a small isolated monastery in western Spain. He has brought with him memories of his past loves, his years in power, and his many military campaigns, most of them failures, and his delusions that his disastrous dynastic arranged marriages for all his family have been strokes of sheer genius. Among his few specially chosen companions is his outspoken major domo, who has been his lifelong aide and confidant. He kws Carlos better than Carlos kws himself and, uniquely, he is allowed total freedom to speak his mind, matter what. The result is often very funny. With the other members of his household revealing tragicomic anecdotes from his past and the unremitting critical yet supposedly objective observations of an all-kwing narrator we see a warts and all picture of a ruler often called the greatest Holy Roman Emperor since Charlemagne. But was he? Or was he just a blustering, bumbling, egotistical, ultimately very humane, loving and lovable, ordinary, generous man; Barbara thought so.
Linda was born in a small mining village at the southern edge of the Durham coalfield in the Northeast of England. She had a lifelong passion for history and historical fiction and a five week independent tour of Spain in 1988 was a life-changing event. She became interested in Spain's history. She wanted to know more, much more. She studied Spanish and then started reading Spanish sources. Many exciting days were to follow in the Biblioteca Nacional in Madrid, other public and private libraries in Spain, and the British Library in London. During 2007-08 VeritasPublishing published her Spanish Hapsburg Trilogy: That Other Juana. (Juana la Loca). A Matter of Pride (Charles V, HRE) and Wives & Other Women (Philip II of Spain). In 2009 That Other Juana (Joana, a Louca) was published in Portugal by Editorial Presenca and in January 2012 it published A Matter of Pride (Uma Questao de Orgulho). In February 2012 Joana, a Louca.was published in Brazil by Editora Europa (Sao Paulo) and in September of 2013 they published Carlos V.