An unforgettable heroine in a vel of the Crusades Joanna is the strong-willed daughter of King Henry of England and Elear of Aquitaine. Close to her brother Richard Lionheart, she grew up at courts in France and England. From jousts to the infamous Courts of Love, from family quarrels to international intrigues, Joanna's youth was spent in the thick of it all. With her ambition to become a queen, like her much-admired mother, Joanna marries King William of Sicily and is swept away to a court that is a crossroads for Normans, Italians, Jews, Arabs and Byzantines. She is furious when she learns that her husband William possesses a harem-but she refuses to accept it in silence, acting like a true descendant of Vikings. That is only the beginning of Joanna's adventures. When Jerusalem falls to Saladin, her husband and The Lionheart make plans to go on Crusade. And Joanna persuades Richard to let her accompany him. This historical epic introduces a strong and truly unforgettable heroine, Joanna Plantagenet, whose drive and persistence helped change the course of history.
Hilary Foister Benford grew up in England. As a child, she experienced the blitz bombings of World War II around London. She has a degree in French literature from the University of London and also studied in Cambridge, Strasbourg and Paris. As a student, she worked various jobs in France as waitress, hotel receptionist, chambermaid and switchboard operator. She taught English at a French high school for a year and then taught French in both England and California. She married an American physicist and they have two children. She co-authored Timescape with her brother-in-law Gregory Benford in 1980. She has traveled extensively in 40 countries and still loves to travel. She has made a point of visiting all the sites where Joanna, sister of Richard Lionheart lived, from Fontevrault to the Holy Land, from Sicily to Toulouse. She has a lifelong interest in history, languages, the Middle Ages, and her hobbies include genealogy, cooking, crosswords and reading mysteries. She currently lives with her husband in the San Francisco Bay Area.