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Publisher's Summary

This New York Times best seller from “one of the great storytellers of our time” (San Francisco Book Review) turns from the glamour of the royal courts to tell the story of an ordinary woman, Alinor, living in a dangerous time for a woman to be different.

A country at war. 

A king beheaded. 

A woman with a dangerous secret. 

On Midsummer’s Eve, Alinor waits in the church graveyard, hoping to encounter the ghost of her missing husband and thus confirm his death. Until she can, she is neither maiden nor wife nor widow, living in a perilous limbo. Instead she meets James, a young man on the run. She shows him the secret ways across the treacherous marshy landscape of the Tidelands, not knowing she is leading a spy and an enemy into her life. England is in the grip of a bloody civil war that reaches into the most remote parts of the kingdom. Alinor’s suspicious neighbors are watching each other for any sign that someone might be disloyal to the new parliament, and Alinor’s ambition and determination mark her as a woman who doesn’t follow the rules. They have always whispered about the sinister power of Alinor’s beauty, but the secrets they don’t know about her and James are far more damning. This is the time of witch-mania, and if the villagers discover the truth, they could take matters into their own hands. 

“This is Gregory par excellence” (Kirkus Reviews

“Fans of Gregory’s works and of historicals in general will delight in this page-turning tale” (Library Journal, starred review) that is “superb.... A searing portrait of a woman that resonates across the ages” (People). 

©2019 Philippa Gregory (P)2019 Simon & Schuster Audio

What listeners say about Tidelands

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WORST Philippa Gregory Novel I’ve Read..And I’ve read them ALL

This is the most BORING and DULL book I’ve ever read from Philippa Gregory. The narrator was terrible (The narrator falls flat compared to Bianca Amato, who narrates most of Gregory’s books. Until literally the LAST 20 minutes NOTHING happens! It just drones on and on. The characters are boring and one dimensional, storytelling like the Tidelands themselves is dready and just plain bad. I’m a big fan of PG’s other books, I love The White Queen, Lady Of The Rivers, The Red Queen, The Kings Curse...all of these books and more were SO good!!! What the heck happened to Philippa Gregory??! I can barely believe this book came from the same author. What a letdown! I’ve anticipated this book for MONTHS, and was really left disappointed. Philippa Gregory should have stuck to what she does best. Not since Wideacre have I disliked a book of hers so much. What a shame, I wanted so badly to love it but it droned on forever to set up 20 minutes of actual exciting even then , poof like some form of malignant magic, book over. Ugh.

2 people found this helpful

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If I Could give 6 stars, I would

Magnificent story. Best narrator I have heard. Fantastic narration with none of the usual attempts at making different voices.

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My first Philippa Gregory

I don't know how this compares to Ms. Gregory's other books but I thoroughly enjoyed this one. It started out slow so I set it aside and didn't know if I would finish it. I did come back to it and I'm glad I did. There is a lot of description of place particularly at first but it did set an atmosphere. I really enjoyed the characters especially Alinor and Ned. The narration was good I could identify and believe in the characters. There was one small thing and that was Ms. Brealey had a very definite way of saying "yes" that was the same for every character and situation. I found that a bit distracting it took me out of the story. The audio book had a section in the middle that was 2 hours and some minutes and then a section right after it that was 4 hours and some minutes. It made it hard to decide where to stop reading. I've never had the luxury of reading a book in one sitting. Historical fiction is a little disconcerting as I think it's hard to know what people thought and believed in a time past. I found myself wondering if Alinor would really be so confident and self-sufficient. I was willing to suspend disbelief for the most part. It is more of a romance than I usually read but that's just a personal preference. I think I will read the next in the series.

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Is it fairy or Ferry?

I found the first half of the book very difficult to read through, and kept confusing the characters and didn't understand what was going on. Then it got interesting with the double pregnancy. The narrator's Voice at times was difficult to understand because of the accent. I could not tell if she was saying ferry, as in the boat or fairy as in the mythical character. At the end of the book, I'm still not sure but I think it was ferry, altho for 3/4 of the book I thought it was fairy. However I do see the appeal of someone with a British accent reading this book, so I wouldn't change it however I wish the pronunciation was a little clearer to distinguish.

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Epic and beautiful

Holding my breath waiting for the second book. Amazing and true to Philippa Gregory - sweeping, dramatic, shocking and gorgeous!

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Well written and well read

I loved this historical fiction so much I listened rather than watch TV. Looking forward to book 2

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  • paula wright
  • 2019-09-02

Please pay close attention to the opening scenes and description of the land and sea

I didn’t pay attention and had to back tract to find what I missed. Her usual good story. What a class system cruelty between the classes seemed to be no place for a woman succeed in 1647 england. Can’t wait for part 2 of this story

17 people found this helpful

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  • Zia
  • 2019-09-03

Trite ending

I always enjoy miss Gregory's stories. However, this one had a very unsatisfactory and predictable ending. Surely there is more to the story, and a bit of redemption at the end would not have come of this period

14 people found this helpful

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  • Bob
  • 2019-09-15

Awesome book

It’s a can’t put down book. Phillipa Gregory always comes thru with an awesome book. And Ms. Amato reads to perfection. Don’t miss this one.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Celeste Albers
  • 2019-10-13

A woman like you in a place like this

This story captured my heart and mind from the first paragraph. Philippa Gregory has a gift for weaving together history and story. She peoples her stories with unforgettable characters and sets them in expertly drawn locations. I could not stop listening and felt that I was living the story. I enjoyed the historical detail and the well drawn depiction of domestic life and the hard work it took to survive. The characters came to life with realistic personalities and genuine strengths, weaknesses and flaws. I don’t understand the criticism of the ending or the pace. I will be impatiently awaiting the next installment.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Donna Herron
  • 2019-08-26

Deeply satisfied, and longing for more!

I can’t remember when a book has left me so deeply satisfied, from the first word, to the very last. An avid Philippa Gregory reader, for years, I have to say that she has outdone herself with this compelling story and her own brand of “magic” in it’s telling! My favorite aspect, as always, is her ability to draw her characters from the page with such skill as to conjure them into full life, completely fleshed out into human beings of bone and blood, with purpose and foibles as real as you and I. In this first book of the new Tidelands series, I believe we are in for more surprises than the unexpected twist in this one, and I’m now eagerly on a vigil, until the next book in this series is in my hands!

12 people found this helpful

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  • carol lee
  • 2019-09-24

OK

was slow but interesting story. it picked up and was getting good. then the ending went no where

3 people found this helpful

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  • Lani
  • 2019-09-14

Good Book

I enjoyed this book. It’s not my normal pick but, I was pleasantly surprised. I listened day and night until it was over.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jane Boyd
  • 2020-06-01

Not one of her better book

Was very disappointed- some was interesting but ending was anti-climactic. Stay with more historical novels. This wasn’t good.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Blue
  • 2020-01-24

I love everything by Philippa Gregory but I found this story very disturbing

I love historical fiction and especially historical fiction by Philippa Gregory. I was not expecting a romance novel but this story was so sad and too disturbing for me. I definitely recommend this author but not this book.

2 people found this helpful

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  • valerie
  • 2020-01-14

okay

This story was very upsetting. The way they treated the lower class and women was deplorable. The story was ok but it ended abruptly.

1 person found this helpful