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To Die for (Ladies in Waiting #1)

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  2,535 Ratings  ·  232 Reviews
"To Die For, " is the story of Meg Wyatt, pledged forever as the best friend to Anne Boleyn since their childhoods on neighboring manors in Kent. When Anne's star begins to ascend, of course she takes her best friend Meg along for the ride. Life in the court of Henry VIII is thrilling at first, but as Anne's favor rises and falls, so does Meg's. And though she's pledged he ...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 415 pages
Published January 1st 2012 by Center Point (first published February 18th 2011)
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Sep 25, 2011 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Original review 10/1/11

Where I got the book: purchased on Kindle.

This book was recommended to me by another author, as an example of how an author can portray a historical character from the point of view of a friend. This technique, and the Christian angle, are what set Byrd's book apart from the many kings-and-queens novels written about the Tudor era--Philippa Gregory is the inevitable example of the narrower point of view.

The shifting of the POV means that the author can stay true to the Chr
Aug 29, 2013 Alyssa marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I will definitely have to read this book now since I just discovered Meg Wyatt is my 15th great-grandmother. :)
Dec 07, 2011 Lucy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I ought to have learned my lesson by now, really. If I see a "Tudor" historical fiction whose cover features headless ladies with an impressive amount of square-necked cleavage, walk away. Still, I have a thing for Anne Boleyn. So many people have different ideas about her, and I'm always curious about whether authors are going to be pro or against, despite the historical facts, which lead me feel comfortable with ambivalence.

So I borrowed To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn despite the unsettlin
Serena Chase
Jul 01, 2011 Serena Chase rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Prior to reading To Die For my knowledge of the Tudor period of English history was pretty much limited to two specific, yet unrelated sources: a DVD rental of The Other Boleyn Girl, and the much less historically relevant rendition of "I'm Henry the VIII, I am! Henry the Eighth I am, I am." sung by Patrick Swayze in the film Ghost. But other than recalling that the second verse is, in fact, the same as the first -- and that ScarJo and NatPort wore some pretty dresses (and also discarded them qu ...more
Everyone knows the fate of Anne Boleyn. However, few know the story from the viewpoint of Anne’s childhood friend: Meg Wyatt (sister of Thomas Wyatt, known for being a speculated paramour of Anne’s). Sandra Byrd takes this creative angle of Anne in “To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn”.

“To Die For” caused instant weariness due to the genealogical tables firmly asserting that Mary Boleyn’s offspring were sired by Henry VIII. Although this may be a minor detail to some; such a deliverance of specul
Jun 30, 2011 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yes, another Anne Boleyn novel. They seem to be coming off an assembly line. Mistress Bolyen has been explored so much lately in popular fiction, TV and nonfiction lately that I'm getting a little sick of her. Not only is Anne being overused, but so is Henry VIII and his entire Tudor court. Sure, it's hard to not enjoy the soap opera-like life of Henry VIII with his six wives and countless mistresses, but really- enough already!

This was exactly what I was thinking when I saw To Die For. How cou
Joanna Johnson
Feb 14, 2012 Joanna Johnson rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Having personally read many historical fiction and non-fiction I can normally tell if I will enjoy a book within a few pages, this book however differed in that it started so promisingly. Perhaps if I had know beforehand that the writer was a christain writer I would have known better what to expect and whilst I have read numerous books where the characters have discovered themselves through renewed faith for the most part the author used it as a way of focusing the reader on the plot and charac ...more
Margaret Chind
Mar 28, 2011 Margaret Chind rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Margaret by: Libby Reed
I've been excited about Sandra Byrd's Ladies in Waiting series for a long time and kept meaning to pick up the book, but life just kept getting in the way. I wanted to be able to really read it and give it justice in attention. I knew Sandra to be a contemporary author and though I have not read her contemporary novels I was intrigued to read her historicals and now having stayed up late into the night finishing her first in the Ladies in Waiting series I realize I have sorely missed out and I'm ...more
Oct 14, 2011 Katie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

Beautiful. Heartbreaking.

Those are two words that came to mind when I closed the book after reading the last chapter. Wow, what a beautifully tragic story To Die For is! I'd read, briefly, about the Boleyn sisters and, like many others, thought they were two scheming women who seduced the king to get the crown. But Sandra Byrd shows us that oftentimes, there is a lot more going on than meets the eye. ;-)

Through the eyes of Meg, Ann Boleyn dearest fri
Mar 25, 2011 Brenda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To Die For is the first book in the new Ladies in Waiting series by Sandra Byrd. I don't usually read a lot of historical fiction. I generally like to stick with the pretend stuff, like you'll find in speculative fiction. But Sandra Byrd is one of my favorite authors, and I love her novels (I haven't read her YA books, so I can't comment on those, but I adore her adult novels). Before I get to anything else, though, can I just take a minute to point out how gorgeous this cover is? It's definitel ...more
Feb 05, 2013 Jamie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few chapters into To Die For by Sandra Byrd, I had to hit up the world wide web and Wikipedia to find out more about the Boylen Family and King Henry VIII. After reading about both, all I have to say is those Brits were cray. I might even say cray, cray.

It’s easy to forget that kings and queens of old were normal people who had best friends they grew up with, boys/girls they crushed on before being given into marriage, gossip to deal with and wanted to make a difference.

Also, after reading thi
Rio (Lynne)
I probably would not have read this, had it not been in my view at the library. I am well versed with Anne Boleyn (as she is my favorite of Henry's Wives) but I felt like there wasn't anything new for me to read about her. In this story, the author brings a fresh angle with the friendship of Anne and Meg Wyatt. They did grow up together and there is some proof that Meg was with Anne during these years. The author brings us a fictional story about Meg, but admits in her author's notes how she tri ...more
Cheryl Olson
“Hank the V-I-I-I put poor Katie by and married young Ann Boleyn who tried to please but she soon went wrong by singing her song all out of key, it was his masterpiece”. Well, these are the lyrics to a ditty that kept humming through my head from my Jr. High concert in 8th grade as I read this story about the ill-fated 2nd wife of King Henry the VIII. Admittedly the lyrics from this song were a bit on the corny side, with some “ hey nonny, nonny” type lines thrown in for good measure, but I ass ...more
Sep 20, 2011 Sam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Of all the perceptions regarding historical figures, the views on Anne Boleyn are arguably the most polarized. Thoughts on her range from a feminist model of the time to a harlot. Unfortunately, most authors take the simple route and describe her as a seductress enchanting the king, taking no notice of her acts of charity and other more positive characteristics.

So after a while, weary from the inaccurate portrayals of Anne Boleyn, I stopped reading Tudor novels altogether. When I first heard of
Natalie Grueninger
Sandra Byrd’s ‘To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn’ was the only ‘Tudor comfort’ I allowed myself on a recent family vacation and boy am I glad I took this treasure along!

It is the story of Anne Boleyn told through the eyes of her friend and confidante, Meg Wyatt but Meg is much more than just a narrator. She is a complex and engaging character with her own intriguing story to tell and I found myself drawn to her from the first page.

Through Meg, the Anne that emerges is a remarkable woman, witty
Apr 13, 2011 Renee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every so often a book is written that completely overcomes all expectations you have for a genre. To Die For by Sandra Byrd is that novel. Not only does it bring to the forefront issues of faith but loyalty and the importance of sisterly affection between friends in a way that males you forget you're reading fiction. Fans of Tudor England and the life of Anne Boleyn will love this story regardless if they like Christian fiction or not. Byrd deftly ties in the faith of the characters with the his ...more
Sep 02, 2011 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3 stars if you already have a good library of Tudor HF, 4 stars if you've just started your Tudormania.

Both the the strength and weakness of this book is its main character. Meg Wyatt, lifelong friend of Anne Boleyn, makes for an interesting narrator, since she has an up-close-and-personal view of the events in the Tudor court that perhaps not every other courtier had. However, it felt like Meg was given 90% of her characterization in the first 20 pages of the book. After that, she was just a "c
Meg Wyatt grew up as a friend of Anne Boleyn and was at Court to witness Anne catch the eye of King Henry VIII. Meg's own childhood was an unhappy one in a cold household with a brutal father and dying mother, both determined to marry her off to old men at Court. All Meg wants is to be there for Anne and to marry her childhood friend Will who is to become a priest.

This book is a different retelling of the story of Anne Boleyn's rise to power as Queen, but having the story through Meg was quite i
Jul 01, 2011 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review-books
What would you sacrifice for your best friend? Would you die for her?

Meg Wyatt has been Anne Boleyn's best friend since they were girls growing up on neighboring manors in Kent. And it's no surprise that when Anne's status starts to rise, she takes Meg along for the ride.

Attending court, attention from the king, it all seems glamorous at first, but then it turns deadly.

I really enjoyed 'To Die For'. There was a lot of history, even though this was a fictitious tale. Much of the stuff that was
Jul 16, 2011 Angelc rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars

Perhaps there is such a thing as too much Anne Boleyn. Having read other books about Anne, I felt like a lot of this book was a rehash of a story I already knew.

One thing that was new about this version was something that I liked a lot. The author portrayed Anne as human, not a manipulative monster. The Anne we've read about before probably wouldn't have even been capable of having a real friend, let alone one so nice as Meg. Anne is still a force to be reckoned with, but we get to see
Anne Osterlund
Meg is a member of the “newly hatched” aristocracy in Tudor England. She has an abusive father, an untrustworthy brother, and a former suitor who feels called to the priesthood. In an era when women have neither the right to work for a living, nor marry without the aid of a substantial dowry, her life, in short, is on tenterhooks.

Except for her friendship with Anne Boleyn. Anne, herself, is far from the established elite. But when the king of England expresses an interest, Anne embraces the oppo
3.5 stars

Meg Wyatt grew up as a neighbor to Anne Boleyn and the two were best friends since childhood. When Anne is sent to court in the service of the king’s sister, Meg is married off to an elderly baron while her heart belongs to Will Ogilvy who chooses priesthood over her.
But when Anne starts to rise at court, Meg joins her as one of Anne’s ladies and finds herself in the middle of court intrigue.

I really liked the idea of telling the story from the point of view of Anne’s friend and it wa
Almost utterly devasting... but still a great work of fiction, and a masterful story, bringing to the life the tragedies of Anne Boleyn. And in the end, a hope of love and peace comes for the ever faithful and broken Meg.
Christy English
Aug 17, 2011 Christy English rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this vision of Anne Boleyn, but I loved even more the character of Meg, who stands by her friend through the best and worst times of her life. A fresh look at the Tudor court, the Reformation in England, and Anne Boleyn herself. This is a good one.
Cynthia Haggard
The trouble for the writer, of writing yet another book about Anne Boleyn, is that it is yet another book about Anne Boleyn and consequently the bar is set formidably high for success. I am sure Ms. Byrd believed she had hit upon the winning formula when she plucked Meg Wyatt from obscurity to become the narrator of her novel TO DIE FOR: A NOVEL OF ANNE BOLEYN. However, I don’t think she succeeded. In what follows, I am going to articulate what I think the problems were.

The main problem for me i
Jul 28, 2011 Christy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Sandra Byrd has been on my favorite authors list since I read her first adult novel back in 2008--Let Them Eat Cake. Ever since then, her books have become ones that I pick up immediately without a second thought because I know they will be that good. To Die For was no exception, and now that Sandra has made this transition into the world of Christian historical fiction, I have no idea how she'll ever be able to choose between writing it or contemporary fiction in the future!

So, with all that s
Aug 29, 2011 Carly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-favorites
Before I launch into this book review, I need to go ahead and admit that with my limited writing abilities, there is no way I will be able to do this book justice. I honestly wasn’t sure if I would like this story or not, but there were two reasons I wanted to read it. First of all, I love Sandra Byrd’s books. I read her entire French Twist series and it has remained one of my favorite fiction series. Also, I wanted to read this book because my roots go back to northern England. In fact my dad w ...more
May 15, 2013 Virginia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites

"To Die For" was such good book!! I have always been interested in the Tudor history but I've never really had a chance to read a book based on their history. To be honest I didn't know what the story would have in store for me. I'm so glad to have read it!

Sandra Byrd is very talented with bringing history to life. The characterization in the story was very amazing. I really loved how she gave life to thecharacters who lived so long ago.

I really admired the character Meg,a handmaiden and frien
Sep 10, 2011 Bookworm rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best friends Meg Wyatt and Anne Boleyn grew up together in Kent. When Anne is sent to live at King Henry VIII's Court, Meg follows soon after.
Meg herself lived a difficult life at home, her father having been a harsh man and often beating her. She falls in love with Will Ogilvy, but when he is sent off to become a priest, her heart is shattered.
Not before long, Meg's father arranges a marriage for her, to a man who is decades older and whom she could never possibly love.
Life at court is
Dina Sleiman
Jul 31, 2011 Dina Sleiman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve found that there are two sorts of historical novels. Some use history as the setting, others use it as the story itself. Sandra Byrd’s new novel, To Die For, is an excellent example of the second type and sheds new light on a well-beloved historical event. If you love stories of Anne Boelyn, Henry VIII, Tudor England, the protestant reformation, or even Queen Elizabeth, you don’t want to miss this book. It dives deep into the historical details of King Henry’s court, giving a thorough under ...more
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 21, 2014 04:09PM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 02:49PM  
Translation into Spanish, why not? 1 1 Jul 01, 2014 07:13PM  
Christian Histori...: Sandra Byrd's "To Die For" 5 20 Aug 19, 2011 07:32PM  
  • At the Mercy of the Queen
  • Young Bess (Elizabeth Trilogy, #1)
  • Secrets of the Tudor Court
  • The Queen's Rival (In the Court of Henry VIII, #3)
  • The Tudor Throne
  • To Serve a King
  • How Do I Love Thee? (Ladies of History #4)
  • At the King's Pleasure  (Secrets of the Tudor Court, #4 )
  • Three Maids for a Crown
  • A Lady Raised High: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • In a Treacherous Court (Susanna Horenbout and John Parker, #1)
  • The Favored Queen
  • Her Mother's Daughter: A Novel of Queen Mary Tudor
  • Her Highness, the Traitor
  • His Last Letter: Elizabeth I and the Earl of Leicester
  • Brief Gaudy Hour: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • Mistress of Mourning
  • The Tudor Secret (The Spymaster Chronicles, #1)
After earning her first rejection at the age of thirteen, bestselling author Sandra Byrd has now published more than forty books. Her adult fiction debut, Let Them Eat Cake, was a Christy Award finalist, as was her first historical novel, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn. To Die For was also named by Library Journal as a Best Books Pick for 2011 and The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr, wa ...more
More about Sandra Byrd...

Other Books in the Series

Ladies in Waiting (3 books)
  • The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr (Ladies in Waiting #2)
  • Roses Have Thorns (Ladies in Waiting #3)

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