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The Redheaded Princess

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  1,118 ratings  ·  168 reviews
Growing up, Elizabeth fears she can never be Queen. Although she is the King's daughter, no woman can ever hope to rule over men in England, especially when her mother has been executed for treason.

For all her royal blood, Elizabeth's life is fraught with danger and uncertainty. Sometimes she is welcome in the royal court; other times she is cast out into the countryside.
Hardcover, 214 pages
Published January 29th 2008 by HarperCollins
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Community Reviews

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This was the first book I have read by Ann Rinaldi. I liked it. The redheaded princess being Elizabeth I, Queen of England. This is a historical fiction about her early life as the princess. Again, I was reading aloud with my 11 year-old daughter, and we both enjoyed the story. It wasn't as captivating as I had hoped. It was good, but not great.

I did find myself cringing at one part in the book. Sir Thomas Seymour loved Elizabeth enough to propose to her, but once she refused, took little time t
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by The Compulsive Reader for

In Rinaldi's spectacular new book for young adults, she's moved beyond American history to British, and the tale of a young redheaded girl who yearned to be queen.

Despised by her father and sister, shoved aside by the nation's leaders, and motherless, young Elizabeth I grows up at her country estate where she learns from a young age the dangers of crossing paths with monarchs. She realizes that even though her sister and her brother stand be
Thanh Ho
This is a wonderful historical story about a famous princess, Princess Elizabeth. This book is like a diary, telling the life of Princess Elizabeth I from the day she was born to the day she was crowded as Queen of England. It contain alot of information, not just about her life but also her though, her love and her family issue. I recommend this book for everyone. It's a great book, both telling about what's happening in the past but also what was the expectation of being royal. If you had ever ...more
About: Before Elizabeth was Queen she was a Princess and this is her story as one of England.

Pros: Learning history, and getting it to the story I loved that part! It is a shame of other stuff. the author writes well..

Cons: But she does not hide any vulgarities of history. I have had experience with her before and found her books although good including much to many BAD things (language, ahem romance, you get the point) from the history back then. In this book she does not hide anything from th
The whole time I was reading The Redheaded Princess, I kept thinking I had read it before. But no, that didn't seem quite right. Why was it so familiar? I do not read a lot of historical fiction so what had I read that dealt with this time period? I was flummoxed - until Lady Jane Grey became Queen. Ah, yes, I had read the 'story' from her perspective. After finishing the book, I read the Author's Note and discovered that Rinaldi had also penned that version of events. Ok. Now, it all makes sens ...more
Mar 04, 2011 Lydia rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: romance fans, people who can stand slow-moving plots
I don't know what to expect from this author. I didn't know, I should say. I got it out because we're studying Queen Elizabeth right now in History, and I thought that this might be nice. I like historical fiction, usually. It captured my attention because of how amazing the picture on front is. Yes, yes, the girl is cute, but I was intrigued by how life-like the picture was, and you could literally imagine that this picture, this imagination was actually a real girl. Wow. So, I never saw that c ...more
Ah, finally got to read Rinaldi's foray into British history after all of her US historical fiction that I've enjoyed so much. I knew the basics of Elizabeth's ascent to being queen, so for me her winding path through Edward, Jane Grey, and Mary weren't a surprise, but I didn't know the details of her dalliances, though I knew she had had them. Rinaldi does, as always, a good and interesting job of exploring her protagonist's path to maturity (though her nine year-olds always seem like they have ...more
Cover Blurb: I don't mind the person on the cover of this book because it's a side profile, she's not staring at me, and it's done in the style of a portrait.

What I Liked: Rinaldi has always been good at breathing new life into historical figures. I think that it must be harder to do so with famous historical figures - such as Queen Elizabeth I. But she did a remarkable job. She paints a very interesting and entirely believable picture of a young Elizabeth: mature for her age, but flawed, and re
Sep 28, 2012 Kayla rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Any young teenager that like historical fiction
I read this for a book report in 8th grade. We had to go this thing where we had to find an adult to read the book with us and I read it with my mom. I just picked and I didn't quite understand. When I was 13, I was quite ignorant to the Tudor era. I didn't even know Elizabeth I was Henry VIII's daughter.

This book is the starter of a long standing 3 and a half year long obsession I've had with Edward VI. Honestly, he was my favorite character. I loved him so much. He's probably one of the least
The year is 1542. Nine-year-old Elizabeth is aware of her destiny: she will one day be Queen of England. Her father Henry VIII alternately accepts and rejects her in court. The motherless Elizabeth is brought up by her nanny Catherine Ashley. An entire household of servants lives with her. Elizabeth is brave, intelligent, industrious , and scholarly; at age four she learned Latin! Elizabeth also learns to be wary and distrustful of people in court; their loyalties change quickly. Elizabeth watch ...more
Jul 15, 2008 Sarah rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: grades 6-9
Recommended to Sarah by: 7/8 list
This story begins in England in the year 1542, when Elizabeth is nine years old. Although she is the daughter of King Henry VIII, she is not officially recognized as a princess because she, along with her other half-siblings Edward and Mary, have fallen out of their father’s favor. Instead, she lives as Lady Elizabeth, head of the household at Hatfield with her nanny. Throughout her childhood she rarely visits her father at the palace.

Many people say that she is very much like her father; this p
Nothing doing. I just have to say it, I've read quite a few Elizabeth books (both before and after she was crowned) and this one just didn't connect.
Okay, this may just be wrong and I'm completely off my rocker, but in every other version of history I've heard, Elizabeth did not spend her whole life thinking about what she would do "when she was Queen." It just felt like the author was trying to bring across the fact that she was "born ready to rule" or something, and it just felt off. Elizabet
Rinaldi, Ann. 2008. The Redheaded Princess.

The Redheaded Princess. What can I say about this one? It's a fictional novel--for teens--about Princess Elizabeth. The novel opens when she's a child and she's still estranged from her father, King Henry VIII. The novel closes with the death of her sister, Queen Mary, a.k.a Bloody Mary. In between, there are many ups and downs along the way. Her semi-reconciliation with her father and his newest and latest wife, Katharine. Her relationship with her hal
As far as historical fiction for young adults is concerned, this is one of the best books I have read in quite a while. I actually have read extensively about Queen Elizabeth I’s reign, as I have a fascination for this particular time in British history. I found the book to be very well-researched and richly detailed. It is undoubtedly a good introduction to the historical fiction genre for the middle grades and above. I feel that the author, Ann Rinaldi, was able to capture the compelling and c ...more
Very well-researched take on Elizabeth's childhood. Some of the things that bothered other reviewers (like Thomas Seymour's actions) are well-documented facts. The author (by her own admission in the afterword) did put her own interpretation on Elizabeth's motivations and feelings, but it's well done and fairly convincing. Elizabeth was strong, stubborn, wily and sometimes erratic, and reading about her childhood, even in a fictionalized account, sheds some insight on how she came to be the quee ...more
 Tara ♪
Young Elizabeth Tudor is Henry VII daughter, but he doesn't always act like it. Sometimes she's at court, as a princess should be. Other times, however, she's at a country house. At a young age, she was stripped of her title; she became Lady Elizabeth. Now, however, she's back in favor with her father. She has re-inherited her rights to the throne.

Then, her father dies. Her younger brother, Edward, inherits the throne. We are led through Elizabeth's life as her brother dies, the throne is give

Naomi Ls
This book was good. It was interesting to read a book about Elizabeth the princess who became queen. Some parts were kind of boring but most were pretty interesting. I read this book for the SS project but I liked that I read a different genre. I would recommend to a classmate if you like historic books and about royalty. This was the best historic book I read
An easy read of a period of Elizabeth I's life not often studied. The book begins when Elizabeth is a child and ends when she is made Queen. In between, we learn of how she was a Princess one day and a "mere lady" the next, only to have her title and her place in the line of succession to England's throne returned to her, all at the whim of her father, Henry VIII. We hear of how she was treated when her brother Edward was King, and when her sister Mary was Queen, and how she observed the reigns ...more
Maeve Gilbert
I thought that The Redheaded Princess was a good book that gave a pretty detailed summary of Princess Elizabeth's life with her as the narrator. However, I felt that maybe it could be made more exciting instead of just recounting the events of her life. This book tells the story of a young princess trying to find her way and become the queen.
The Redheaded princess was a really exciting book to read, in my personal opinion. I thought that the way Elizabeth's character was portrayed added a nice layer of sympathy and emotion for her when something bad happened. Even though there was a good story line and interesting characters, the book lacked the ability to completely suck you in, and not let you stop reading until you finished. It seemed like the language was a little to simple for my reading level, but I'm not sure if it was becaus ...more
This might be more like 3.5 stars.
It was extremely well written, and Ann Rinaldi made Princess Elizabeth very likable. You wanted her to become queen. Since the book was about her as a princess, wanting to be queen, by the time you near the end, you're on tenterhooks, hoping she becomes queen. I'm not going to spoil any more than that.

All in all it is a very engaging and historically correct (from what I can tell). Choose this for a quick, enjoyable historical fiction, and a different perspecti
Ella Kate
I already liked Ann Rinaldi, but this book made it clear to me why i should. I am a humongus fan of Elizabeth the First, and the accuracy in this book was amazing to me. She slips is those facts without you really noticing, and takes you to a world where your father loved your mother, yet had to kill her because of popularity and what would happen if he didn't kill her. It takes you to a place where you're sister hates you, and you have done nothing purposley cruel to her. Where you;re brother, ...more
I really liked this book. I felt like it was well researched and wel written. I really like world history, and this was just so fun to read Rinaldi's take on Princess Elizabeth before she was Queen, and to learn a little more about her. Even though I knew what would happen in the end, somehow, the suspence was still there, and had me intrigued from the beginning. Really a book you can get lost in!
What a fine time period, what a fine author! What a terrible disappointment! For a book by Ann Rinaldi, this lacked a lot of detail that I thought would be in the in the book. Besides there wasn't a lot of scenes where there was dialouge and action, most of it was one long monolouge of dates and facts without any break for an interesting subplot or SOMETHING. It seems she didn't know how to wrap her head around Elizabeth's character and motivations. However the book is as always accurate and wel ...more
Ann Rinaldi spins a tale of how Elizabeth I might have felt growing up and wondering if she will be queen someday.

Reading this book I had a strange sense of deja vu, like I had read another book that was remarkably similar to this book. I was slightly disappointed with this Ann Rinaldi book, I grew up reading her books and have always eagerly absorbed anything she has written, but this one was hard to get into. I didn't particularly care for the main character and didn't love the narrative. At t
A student gave this a high recommendation, so I was let down by this book. I felt that the story dragged on and on rather than having clear episodes with highs and lows. This is probably due to the fact that it was about a real person and real life is structured however it turns out, but still, it impacted my enjoyment of the story. I didn't feel motivated to keep going. I was surprised that the story covered such a large span of time. If I didn't have any prior knowledge about the royal family, ...more
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First person retelling of Queen Elizabeth I, beginning when she was nine years old and subject to the whims of her father, Henry VIII, who was ill and dying. Her mother, Ann Boleyn, has been beheaded. Elizabeth and her half-sister, Mary, are in conflict over who is next in line for the throne after their half-brother, Edward.
The author conveys the complexities of these dangerous times and how easy it was to be sent to the Tower for beheading, even if you were a princess. Danger was everywhere an
I thought it was an okay book. It wasn't my favorite in the whole world but I still liked it. I loved how it started when Elizabeth was little.
I pretty much read this in one afternoon. I really like Ann Rinaldi's books even though I'm feeling I've begun to outgrow them. This was similar to her others. A strong female narrator. Characters that are enjoyable and you can understand their positions. There is something to think on. This is set in England though, unlike most of her books that are set in the United States.

I was interested in reading an alternative view of Elizabeth, to The Virgin's Lover which was so horrible. I was a little
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Ann Rinaldi (b. August 27, 1934, in New York City) is a young adult fiction author. She is best known for her historical fiction, including In My Father's House, The Last Silk Dress, An Acquaintance with Darkness, A Break with Charity, and Hang a Thousand Trees with Ribbons. She has written a total of forty novels, eight of which were listed as notable by the ALA. In 2000, Wolf by the Ears was lis ...more
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