Cover image for The secret wife of King George IV
The secret wife of King George IV
Haeger, Diane.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
373 pages ; 25 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Although it was illegal, secret, and against the express commands of his famously mad father, King George IV of England married twice -- once for duty and once for love. While Caroline of Brunswick eventually became his lawful queen, it was the beautiful Maria Fitzherbert, recognized as his wife by the Catholic Church but not by the laws of England, who claimed his heart. In the hands of author Diane Haeger, their relationship becomes a mesmerizing love story, filled with intrigue and passion. The characters and drawing rooms of early 19th-century England come alive to create a portrait of the age that is colorful and resonant with historical detail.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Maria Fitzherbert, the secret wife and true love of King George IV, is the protagonist of Haeger's (Beyond the Glen) alluring historical romance, based on the true story of the 18th-century monarch's illegal marriage. At 29 a widow of independent means, Maria is determined to live for herself. Newly arrived in London in 1784, she is flattered by the attentions of the Prince of Wales, but knowing his reputation as a womanizer, she responds only cautiously to his protestations of undying love. She is well aware that as a Catholic, she is unacceptable as the bride of an Anglican monarch. Risking his throne and his mad father's rage, George secretly marries Maria, vowing to love her forever. But their clandestine union is ill-fated. Maria is unhappy with the dishonesty and intrigue to which George must resort to preserve the monarchy--including his eventual marriage to the German princess Caroline of Brunswick. Haeger paints a lively picture of 17th-century London, carefully constructing a realistic social milieu, and detailing political intrigue, legal issues and the demands of high society. Charles Fox, Richard Sheridan and Queen Charlotte make convincing cameo appearances, but Haeger is most successful in the textured characterization of her two protagonists. She plausibly depicts George's flawed nature and his emotional war between love and royal duty, and Maria's position, rendered untenable by her religious code. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved