When Columbus returned from America to Spain in 1493, his discoveries exacerbated tensions between Spain's monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella, and Portugal's João II. Which nation was to control the world's oceans? In this history, Stephen Brown explains how a Papal proclamation paved the way for dividing the world between the rival nations—confirming Spain's and Portugal's superpower status—and initiating two centuries of international espionage, piracy, and warfare. At the heart of this feud was a young woman who defied societal conventions and her king by marrying the man of her choice.
"This is a starry love story, a tale of seething jealousies and subterfuge, a political imbroglio, and religious cruelties. It sounds like Shakespeare and it could have very well been the plot of one of his plays."—Toronto Star