November 22, 2004
This epic tale begins in the spring of 1016 with Viking ships, adrift,
choppy seas along the coast of England. A fearsome King Canute the Dane, Viking conqueror, invades.
One town after another is devoured until reaching the castle of Lord Leofwine
and then Godiva's hometown of Coventry.
Death and destruction
overwhelms this northern region, while a thirteen-year old Godiva watches helplessly
as the bloodthirsty invaders pillage
her once peaceful world. Canute’s vicious army coldly murders her
parents, as well as friends. Godiva barely survives and only due to the heroism of Sister Osburga. Sister Osburga boldly draws the Vikings away from the hidden Godiva giving her the opportunity to escape.
Ten years pass and King Canute now controls Northern Mercia. Godiva now an exquisite woman marries the Earl of Mercia,
Lord Leofric. Leofric under orders from Canute is to collect the "danegeld" --an exaggerated amount of taxes from the townspeople.
Against the taxation Godiva implores and tries to reason with Leofric, requesting relief upon the people of Coventry. Her
appeals are ignored.
Taking matter into her own hands Godiva relinquishes her wealth. Her jewels are contributed to pay for all the taxes
of Coventry’s villagers. This is pure insolence in King Canute’s eyes. To alleviate Canute’s anger and postpone
taxation Godiva now faces dishonor and shame if his challenge of riding naked on her horse through Coventry is accepted.
Godiva is David Rose’s debut novel. The tale of Godiva, a unique woman of her time, as Rose tells
it, has been handed down from generation to generation in his family lineage. Rose
is an Academy Award-winner for film special effects, and it clearly shows
through description. Dialog on the other hand is at times klutzy and characters in need of more development. Still none of this takes away from this legendary tale.
Godiva is an entertaining book that highlights a number of topics: religious beliefs,
courage, love, and survival. It is no doubt David Rose’s debut novel is a promising
start as an author, and I certainly hope to read more of this upcoming series!
Thank you Mr. Rose. Definitely