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The Lady in the Tower (Queens of England #4)

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  3,766 Ratings  ·  176 Reviews
One of history’s most complex and alluring women comes to life in this classic novel by the
legendary Jean Plaidy.

Young Anne Boleyn was not beautiful but she was irresistible, capturing the hearts of kings and commoners alike. Daughter of an ambitious country lord, Anne was sent to France to learn sophistication, and then to court to marry well and raise the family’s fortu
Mass Market Paperback, 402 pages
Published May 12th 1988 by Fawcett (first published 1986)
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May 22, 2016 Gary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Anne Boleyn was the second and most famous of Henry VIII's six wives.
Henry's determination to marry her, in part, led to the separation of the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church.
Another reason was that Henry wanted the wealth of the Church in his own hands being a greedy grasping man.

The book begins with Anne's incarceration in the Tower of London as she reflects on her life.
We are taken back to when Anne was seven years old and traveled to France to serve in the household of Princ
Sep 03, 2011 Hannah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hannah by: My dear sister Nancy
It's been almost 10 years since I read this. In the interim, I've read more current novels by countless authors about doomed Queen Anne Boleyn. However, re-reading this has solidified my belief that no one has blended with documented factual information a better fictional account of Anne's rise and fall then Plaidy.

This is a smooth and easy read with good characterizations and dialog. It's impossible for anyone to know how Anne really came off personality-wise, but novels written about her usual
Feb 28, 2010 Arleigh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the book that started my obsession with Jean Plaidy–the first of her novels I read and my absolute favorite characterization of Anne Boleyn. Eight years have passed, and reading it again I stand by my initial delight in finding an admirable protagonist in Anne–after having been introduced to her by Philippa Gregory, with her not-so-flattering portrayal of Anne as a great intriguer with temperamental dominance.

In The Lady in the Tower, Anne is imprisoned in the Tower of London, recounting
May 27, 2015 Rod rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
This makes up for trying to watch the Tudors on t.v.. (99% less sex - and much more history.)

I listened to this because of the comments I heard that Anne Boleyn was somewhat helpful in kick starting the Christian reformation - but not really in a good or bad way. But necessary.

This account takes us through most of Anne's life and shows us the struggles of attempting to do what she thought might be the noble thing. But it's best not to always trust your thoughts, better to get a 2nd or 3rd opini
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 20, 2017 Marian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
The tempestuous love affair between Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn scandalized Christendom and altered forever the religious landscape of England.
Debo aceptar que uno de los personajes históricos que más me FASCINAN es Ana Bolena. Primero que nada para apreciar a esta mujer se debe uno quitar de la mente la idea que se da en el libro/película de La Otra Bolena. Ana Bolena no era una *evil bitch* . No, no creo que lo fuera, tampoco creo que ella fuera una santa, pero simplemente fue una mujer inteligente al principio, muy ambiciosa, segura de ella misma y de sus creencias y capaz de hacer que un hombre o mejor dicho que un rey se OBSESIO ...more
Brittany B.

Excellent!! One of the best Anne Boleyn books I've read to date. Jean Plaidy is an exceptional author who turned what could have been dry, boring history into a fantastic, page-turning novel! Very well researched and beautifully written.

Highly recommended!!

Audiobook: Anne Flosnick gave her best performance. Knowing her from historical romance novels, I found her narration of this story near perfect!!!
Nov 19, 2009 Nicole rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anne Boleyn has always interested me and I finally have gotten around to reading some historical fiction depicting her story. The author of this book gets a wee bit repetitive at times but overall does a great job bringing the characters to life. I'm really enjoying this one - though I want to jump into the pages and rescue the Anne. What a story!
May 04, 2011 Xenia0201 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So often Anne Boleyn is painted the villian. This novel is fiction but I love the perspective the story is being told from. Anne is opinionated, educated, erudite and mysterious. I never believed she was an opportunist like her father, the Earl of Rochford. It is highly probably the rest of the Boleyn children were strongly encouraged to increase their status from parental pressure. In this depiction, Henry is the pursuer, and Anne holds him off, not only because she dislikes and blames him for ...more
Dec 07, 2008 Jessica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Fascinating and intuitive first person narrative of the life of Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII of England. I thoroughly enjoyed the author's take on Anne, especially the decision to write the novel as if Anne had written it while imprisoned in the tower before her execution. It is laid out in a chronological, conversational, and confessional manner; as a way of looking back over the span of her life, to determine where she made her fatal mistakes, and how she may have anticipate ...more
Katie Sommers
Feb 17, 2016 Katie Sommers rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Get in Anne's shoes

Such a great point of view. The author helps you get in Anne's head so you see her for more than a one dimensional person. She's not the historical monster she was made out to be.
I thought it was very good. I enjoyed how the story was told as a memory from the night before she died so throught the story she would give her own opinion on her past actions. It will absolutely keep me coming back for more Jean Plaidy.
Dec 20, 2015 Sharon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A interesting take on the Anne Boleyn story, you are expected to feel sorry for her throughout this story. I did enjoy it, but it is not the best telling of her story that I have read.
Aug 25, 2008 Trudi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, twss
One of the best examples of historical fiction. All the drama and tragedy that is Anne Boleyn told in the first-person. Unique and wonderful.
May 19, 2015 Ana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ruth Chatlien
Repetitive and dry. I was disappointed.
I really enjoyed this book. It was the first I read by Jean Plaidy, and it will definitely not be the last. I recently re-discovered my Tudors obsession, and so I decided to pick a book about my personal favourite Henry VIII's wife, Anne Boleyn. Plaidy wrote a lot of Tudors books, and I really hope the others are as successful as this one.

Plaidy starts the story when Anne is in the Tower, awaiting her death, and then goes back to the very beginning of her life, when as a child she goes to the co
Sarah Lawrence
My favorite version of Anne Boleyn that I've read so far! Almost every other book I've read--especially the infamous The Other Boleyn Girl --play up the smear campaign that accompanied and brought about her downfall. Jean Plaidy, however, lets Anne have our sympathy even as we cringe (along with her) at her forwardness.

Admittedly, I have read this book before. The first time it was lent to me by a friend in high school, and it's one of the few times that I can remember relating so strongly to
History has been very unkind to Anne Bolyen. Most of the time, she is painted as the witch for enticing Henry VIII away from his loyal Queen of twenty years, causing the break with Rome and the closing of monasteries.

But we never really got to know the real her, the woman behind that ugly reputation. Jean Plaidy has wonderfully woven a story about Anne and what shaped her character and lead to her rise and ultimate downfall. We start off with Anne, locked up in the tower, awaiting for her soon
Not a whole lot new to be learned or proposed about Anne Boleyn at this point, fiction or non-, but Jean Plaidy manages some novelty with speculation on her subject's early life at the French court. Her Anne isn't quite as calculating as Philippa Gregory's, and her opinion of Mary Boleyn is completely different. Plaidy presents Mary's "free and easy" behavior as a formative contrast to Anne, a reputation she works against all her life. Anne condemns Mary's way of life, but the author doesn't, pr ...more
I first read this book when I was a teenager - at least 20 years ago now. It was just as entrancing this time around as it was the first!

Plaidy's style isn't for everyone. I devoured her books as a teen and enjoyed the romance novel style these historical novels were written in. All of them are in first-person and from the point of view of the person whose story is being told. The Lady in the Tower is about Anne Boleyn, and she is telling her own story. In this way, Plaidy does bring history ali
Lea Ann
Apr 14, 2011 Lea Ann rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to give this book more than one star. It had the makings of good material, the story of Anne Boleyn from Anne Boleyn's point of view. However, there were major problems I saw with the story that made it one of the few books I read that have me severely questioning my policy of finishing a book I have started, no matter how painful it is.

1.) Repetitive: The story is horribly repetitive. It seems like entire paragraphs where Anne is describing her sixth finger, her admirers, her wo
May 05, 2013 Sophie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I used to love reading Victoria Holt's gothic novels. Although I wasn't as fond of the historical novels written under her pen-name Jean Plaidy, I didn't remember them as being boring or poorly written in any way. So when I saw this title available for audio download, I quickly checked it out. Unfortunately, I found it both boring and poorly written. It didn't seem like historical fiction really--more like a history lesson that someone attempted to breathe life into. The story is supposed to be ...more
Nov 12, 2009 Tania rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 22, 2013 Noémy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, historical
Obsessed might be too light of a word to describe my fascination with Anne Boleyn but really guys, this past few months she has been the only thing I wanted to read about. I haven't read that many works relating to her tragic past (there has been four or five only I believe) but each book had me craving more and more of her story.

The 3stars were granted only because at times there were whole passages that were reapeated in a different chapter and I don't know if this was merely due to bad editi
I loved the new perspective of Anne Boleyn in this novel. Most people assume that Anne was a conniving girl that just wanted to be queen. In this telling, Anne is nothing like that. She falls in love and that match is prevented. She later learns that Henry had something to do with the match being prevented. Also, she attempts to flee Henry's sight by leaving court and he simply follows and promises to divorce the Queen to have Anne. We don't know if the King really did prevent the match for Anne ...more
Jun 01, 2008 Laura rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was disappointed that this novel wasn't more engaging. I didn't know much about Anne Boleyn (except what I knew from The Tudors) before I read this.

It started off pretty well, but by the time Anne has decided that she will accept Henry VII's advances, the story just dragged on. I understand that the author was trying to stay true to reality (-ish) but I think some events could have been fast-forwarded over.

And it was very confusing trying to remember who was whom and how they were related. At
I enjoyed Jean Plaidy's first-person account of Anne Boleyn's life in retrospect from the Tower of London. It is difficult to know what Anne herself did or thought in the years before her death, as Henry VIII sought to have any remembrance of her destroyed. However, I thought that Plaidy did an admirable job of portraying her brilliant intelligence and vulnerability amidst her obvious complexity. I also appreciated that she portrayed her as essentially asexual and driven by not only ambition, bu ...more
Michelle Cristiani
Plaidy's research is extraordinary, and her telling brings it all to live. The twist here is also beautiful: that Anne never wanted a pair with Henry, but like any subject, was unable to get out of what the King expected of her. It's a sad tale - but told through first person, with wisdom and acknowledged guilt, it's decidedly heart-wrenching.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Oct 12, 2015 07:46AM  
  • A Lady Raised High: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • Brief Gaudy Hour: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn
  • The Concubine
  • Dear Heart, How Like You This?
  • The Queen of Subtleties: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • Mistress Anne
  • My Enemy, the Queen
  • Young Bess (Elizabeth Trilogy, #1)
  • I Am Mary Tudor (Mary Tudor, #1)
  • The Queen's Rival (In the Court of Henry VIII, #3)
  • Vengeance Is Mine: A Novel Of Anne Boleyn, Katherine Howard, And Lady Rochford  The Woman Who Helped Destroy Them Both
  • Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII's Obsession
  • By Royal Decree (Secrets of the Tudor Court, #3)
  • Legacy
  • Threads: The Reincarnation of Anne Boleyn
Eleanor Alice Burford, Mrs. George Percival Hibbert was a British author of about 200 historical novels, most of them under the pen name Jean Plaidy which had sold 14 million copies by the time of her death. She chose to use various names because of the differences in subject matter between her books; the best-known, apart from Plaidy, are Victoria Holt (56 million) and Philippa Carr (3 million). ...more
More about Jean Plaidy...

Other Books in the Series

Queens of England (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Myself, My Enemy (Queens of England, #1)
  • Queen of This Realm (Queens of England, #2)
  • Victoria Victorious: The Story of Queen Victoria (Queens of England, #3)
  • The Courts of Love (Queens of England, #5)
  • In the Shadow of the Crown (Queens of England, #6)
  • The Queen's Secret (Queens of England, #7)
  • The Reluctant Queen: The Story of Anne of York (Queens of England, #8)
  • The Merry Monarch's Wife (Queens of England, #9)
  • William's Wife (Queens of England, #10)
  • The Rose Without a Thorn (Queens of England, #11)

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