Marvellous book. One of those I almost wanted to start again as soon as I'd finished. Historical fiction exactly as it should be, takes real events and adds flesh to the bare facts (without bending history too much) to make an enthralling tale. It helps that this is one of the rare romantic happenings in English history and that John of Gaunt is a fascinating character even before he's been fleshed out and made man (a terribly attractive man he is too). I devoured most of this in two sittings - and it was about 10000 times better than the housework I should have been doing!