Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Virgin's Lover

I'm not quite as interested in Queen Elizabeth as I was in Henry VIII's wives, but this was still a good book and I learned a lot. It actually made me want to learn a little more about Elizabeth's reign, in particular why she never married. This book covers the first few years of her time as queen, which was more tumultuous than I thought. Definitely worthwhile if you like Philippa Greggory's other books!

Plot: Elizabeth becomes queen and falls in love with Sir Robert Dudley...but he's married and she's queen...drama

Read: February 2009

Related Books: The Other Queen (next chronologically)

Next Up: Something Blue

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Philippa Gregory Books

I love the books about the wives of Henry VIII by Philippa Greggory. She really brings the queens to life and makes you relate to them. I don't know what order they were published in, but I recommend reading them in chronological order:

The Constant Princess
This is the sweet, sad story of Katherine of Aragon, a princess of Spain who first married Henry VIII's older brother Philip. When Philip died, she hung around England until she managed to marry Henry and become queen. I loved reading about Katherine's love story with two brothers and her quest to be England's queen.

The Other Boleyn Girl
This book focuses on Anne Boleyn's sister Mary, who was one of Henry's mistresses before Anne lured Henry in and convinced him to divorce Katherine and separate from the Catholic church. Even though its a little long, the book is sooooo good! The author really brings out the relationship between the two sisters and the king and the struggle of the Boleyn family to rise (and stay) in power. So so so good.

The Boleyn Inheritance
This picks up after Anne Boleyn is killed and after wife #3 (Jane Seymour) dies in childbirth. Henry picks wife #4, a German princess, from a painting and when she shows up, he does not like her at all. So then Kitty Howard, Anne Boleyn's cousin, flirts her way on to the throne instead. Its written from the perspective of wife #4, wife #5 and Anne Boleyn's sister-in-law. Very interesting (although a tad long). It really makes me think Henry VIII was off his rocker toward the end of his reign. Too much power.

If you read these, let me know what you think!

After these books, read The Queen's Fool (about Henry's children and their ascent to the throne), then The Virgin's Lover (about Queen Elizabeth, I'm reading this right now) and then The Other Queen (about Mary Queen of Scots, this one is still on my list to read).

Thursday, February 5, 2009


My mom and Brian both gave me this book for Christmas because I had been wanting to read it so badly. My grandma was raving about it over Thanksgiving and Dewey's face on the cover is too cute. I flew through the book, which read a little bit more like a memoir of the head librarian than I expected (although I don't know why I was surprised - its not like you can fill 200 pages with silly cat stories and make the best seller list). Cute, touching book overall.

Plot: Kitten is dropped in library drop box and brings together a small town in Iowa.

Read: late January 2009

Next Up: The Virgin's Lover