As historical fiction is one of my favorite literary genres, I have never been disappointed by a Phillippa Gregory book. She is a master of making English history come alive and knowing that she has a PhD in history is reassuring that the history portion of the lesson is accurate.
I chose this book to read in anticipation of my April trip to England. In this novel, we are entertained by the stories of three women, each told in their own voice, involved in the crazy court of Henry VIII. We continue the journey from her previous books of courtier, Jane Boleyn who is an intriguing window into the politics of the time. We also hear the stories of Henry’s fourth and fifth wives, who could not be more different except for their unfortunate marriages to the king. Ann of Cleves is a misunderstood foreigner. Catherine Howard is really just a child.
Today is the International Day of Women. This book shed light into how women were used as political pawns in this time period in England. Of course, we know that this treatment is not contained within this time and place, but it is particularly a good lesson to think about on this day. Other books I loved with a similar themes are Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See and The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd.
I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did. If you haven’t read her other books, start at the beginning with her first book of Henry’s Queens, The Constant Princess. Happy reading!