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In the Shadow of Lions: A Novel of Anne Boleyn (Chronicles of the Scribe #1)

3.63  ·  Rating Details ·  424 Ratings  ·  65 Reviews
"I am the first writer, The Scribe. My books lie open before the Throne, and someday will be the only witness of your people and their time in this world. The stories are forgotten here, and the Day draws close. I will tell you one of my stories. You will record it."

So begins the narration of one such angel in this sweeping historical tale set during the reign of England's
Paperback, 331 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by David C. Cook
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Sep 05, 2013 Chris rated it did not like it
First let me say that Garrett's writing is good. The book has been edited. The reason why I couldn't finish is Garrett's character of Anne Boleyn. While I am glad, very glad, that a fictional writer makes use of Anne and religion, making Anne into a naive, innocent form a family who think thier elder daughter (Mary) is a slut, is a little much for me. Sorry. (I also didn't like the whole Katherine of Aragorn characterization).

I did like the description and interactions of the More family.

If you
In the Shadow of Lions by Ginger Garrett is a historical novel with a generous splash of speculative-fiction-ishness. Following Anne Boleyn (one of the wives of King Henry VIII) and a peasant woman named Rose, plus cancer-victim Bridget, who lives in the modern world, this book makes for quite the interesting story. And strange. For a while, I got really into it. But it never rose to what I was hoping it would be. Hence, the two-star rating.

Let me explain. While, yes, intriguing and well-written
Oct 01, 2009 Becky rated it it was ok
I really liked Ginger Garrett's style of writing - it was interesting and had a really smooth flow. I liked the basic premise of this story - an angel of sorts is re-telling Anne Boleyn's story as it supposedly "really" happened to a modern woman dying of cancer. It does present a different side of Anne Boleyn and a different side of Thomas More than is usually presented in history books.

That said - it was pretty bad. She actually says implies in the Author's Notes that Anne Boleyn may have been
Mel (Daily Prophecy)
Oct 31, 2012 Mel (Daily Prophecy) rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2013
Also on

This book starts with the story of a dying woman in our time. She is visited by a strange figure nobody else can see: an Angel called The Scribe. He wants her to record the story he is about to tell out of The Tablets of Destiny.

He begins with Rose, a suicidal woman who ends up in the household of Thomas More. She is devoted to God until she reads the forbidden book from Hutchins. More is trying to persecute everyone who dares to read this book
Aug 12, 2008 Crystal rated it it was amazing
This is an unusual POV--what if Anne Boleyn was a martyr? All the historical people are here--Thomas More, King Henry the Eighth, William Hutchins(William Tyndale.) I read it and was inspired to read my Bible through again as it made me weep how we got our Bible into our hands. A mighty work of fiction--loved it. Edgy and inspiring.
Feb 02, 2009 Ruth rated it it was amazing
Every once in a while I read a novel that is not only well-written and entertaining, but also challenges and grows my faith. In the Shadow of Lions is such a novel, and the story has stayed with me long after I finished the book. Ginger Garrett (author of the novels Chosen: The Lost Diaries of Queen Esther 480-465 BC and Dark Hour (Serpent Moon Trilogy)) excels at bringing history to life, and with her latest offering she turns her attention to the well-known Anne Boleyn and turns everything I t ...more
Mar 30, 2009 Kelly rated it it was amazing
This is another first for me. I have read a lot of fiction but never Historical fiction. It isn't that the genre wasn't entertaining, it was just a genre I never looked to for reading enjoyment. Ginger Garrett's Shadow of Lions definitely made me rethink picking up historical fiction.

The book is a tapestry of four stories making one whole. We are lead through very visual language through the rise of Anne Boleyn from Queen Catherine's lady in waiting to King Henry the VIII's strong desire. The st
Stephanie Tracy
Dec 29, 2011 Stephanie Tracy rated it it was amazing
This was an absolutely amazing story about two Tudor women - one, the very famous Anne Boleyn, and the other a fictional servant to Thomas More named Rose. Both women are on very different paths, with very different purposes, but their lives center around one book - the newly influential book by William Hutchins, a heretic. This is a story not only about the famous love between Henry VIII and his second wife, but also about an attachment and willingness to seek God, when powerful people at court ...more
Jul 06, 2009 Jo rated it it was ok
This book was a terrible mess. Important historical facts were not included or completely disregarded and the whole thing just felt rushed. And, wow, what an incredible piece of anti-Catholicism not seen in England since the discovery of the Gunpowder Plot in 1605!
Eustacia Tan
Nov 30, 2012 Eustacia Tan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned, ebook
Like one of the characters says in this book, everyone's written something about Anne Boleyn. But this book is sympathetic towards her. This makes it rather strange for me, because my first introduction to her was through The Other Boleyn Girl, which was not a very flattering portrait.

In The Shadow of Lions has a very interesting narrative style. It jumps between the 'author' of the book an the actual story. Personally, I found this style distracting, I didn't care about the author (there wasn't
Feb 06, 2017 Danielle rated it it was ok
I picked this up thinking I should try to read a Christian Fiction book. I don't really read Christian Fiction, but based on the description and the fact the author is an expert on ancient women's history I thought this might be worth a try. The summary on the back of the book initially confused me. I think it expected the reader to already be familiar with Thomas More, Anne Boleyn, and the transition of England to Anglicanism, but I'm not very familiar with any of it other than I know of the ma ...more
Aug 18, 2008 Michelle rated it really liked it
About the Book:

"I am the first writer, The Scribe. My books lie open before the Throne, and someday will be the only witness of your people and their time in this world." So begins the narration of one such angel in this sweeping historical tale set during the reign of England's Henry VIII. It is the story of two women, their guardian angels, and a mysterious, subversive book . . . a book that outrages some, inspires others, and launches the Protestant Reformation.The devout Anne Boleyn catches
Margaret Metz
Dec 10, 2010 Margaret Metz rated it really liked it
I read a lot of historical fiction and I think this is the first time I saw the perspective that Anne Boleyn might have been a strong believer and trying hard to please God. It was a really unique look at most of those central figures. I've read about some of them before but I found most of it really interesting - and sometimes heart breaking. I wish the book would have not wasted any time in the present because those scenes didn't connect with me nearly as much and sometimes just left me scratc ...more
Sep 02, 2010 Ksenia rated it did not like it
I didn’t finish this book. As quick of a read as it was, I just couldn’t finish it. The premise sounded interesting and different. I thought it would fit nicely in terms of timing too, since I have just finished watching the first season of The Tudors on Netflix. But I was so confused as to what was going on, in terms of this Scribe who shows up a dying editor’s hospital bed, forcing her to write down this true history. Who was this Scribe? Was it Death? Someone else? Apparently there was a myst ...more
Aug 21, 2008 Virginia rated it really liked it
Enjoyable, especially for enthusiasts of the period. I enjoyed Garrett's look inside the life of Thomas More as well as Anne Boelyn. I really liked the inside glimpse of the widespread turmoil caused by the introduction of the forbidden English translation of the Bible, and the way that may have played into the inner workings of Henry's and Anne's relationship. And the much broader and more widespread political workings of Henry's England -- in fact, all of Christianity. This was one of those bo ...more
Kristi (Books and Needlepoint)
In the Shadow of Lions is a beautifully written book by Ginger Garrett. It is the story of Anne Boleyn and the possible role she played in bringing the English version of the Bible into being. I sometimes shy away from books written in this era - something about the way they are written is just too "flowery" and unbelievable for me. This was not the case with this book.

A Scribe comes to visit a dying author in the hospital and tells her this story. The story of Anne and a peasant girl, Rose, du
Dawn Edwards
Jan 02, 2013 Dawn Edwards rated it really liked it
A Novel of Anne Boleyn

Ms. Garrett has written a superb novel about Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII. Unlike what history authors have done with Anne Boleyn's life, Ms. Garrett has explored the feelings Anne must have felt as she tried to reconcile her religious beliefs with the feelings she had for King Henry.

Anne also had to wander through court intrigues about which she was ill prepared to handle. Ms. Garrett has described the isolation that Anne had to feel with so many people of b
Debbie Keith
I picked this book from a list of "clean historical fiction" and was intrigued by the use of angels mentioned. This book is dark and powerful, a life changing read. It presents a fictional account of people and events in the time of Henry VIII and the beginning of the Reformation movement and the move to begin educating women. In the crazy world in which we live it is often easy to forget the price that was paid so we could have the freedom to read the Bible. I read it once completely through as ...more
Jun 11, 2010 Heidi rated it really liked it
Shelves: renaissance
Overall a pretty good book. For the longest time though I had a bit of a hard time with how much it jumped around from one storyline to the other. I'm still not so sure I get the ending but I'm going to read the second book with hopes it will clear that up some more with going further into the story.

I will always read any author notes after a book and it felt a bit like being preached to about religion and while I'm not against anyone in their own religious views, and I'm not overly religious my
A very unique book. I enjoyed the different perspective on Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII, More, and others. It was very interesting to think that maybe our traditional perception of Anne is somewhat off base. As usual, Ms. Garrett's writing is beautiful...she really makes her characters and settings come alive! I also found the supernatural twist in this series intriguing. I did find the jumping between the two women's stories and the present to be somewhat jarring at times, although I was able to fol ...more
Oct 29, 2012 Dee rated it it was amazing
It isn't very often that a fiction book makes me stop and think, this one did just that. I was a little thrown at the very beginning, unsure of where this story was going and had almost convinced myself that I had accidentally downloaded an book that wasn't Christian. Boy, could I have not been more wrong. It challenged me both spiritually and mentally. Trust me when I say you will come away with a different take on Ann Boleyn. Was she really as bad as the men who hated her wrote, or was she rea ...more
Mar 04, 2009 Aimee rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this different twist on the Henry/Anne Boleyne story. In this version, Anne is not the wicked person history usually claims her to be. She is a woman trapped in circumstances beyond her control.
The main storyline though is basically about the bringing forth of the Bible to the people; how they felt on BOTH sides of the issue and the pain and suffering that went in to bringing it to the masses.
At the end, I did really want to go read my scriptures! It made me appreciate the martyrs th
Nov 17, 2013 Joy rated it really liked it
This story gives a more forgiving view of Anne Boleyn, who is often viewed as one of the most devious women in history. Instead, she is led by the desires of a cold, distant, privilaged king who took what he wanted. I enjoyed the parallel story of Thomas More and William Hutchins (Tyndale), and appreciated the insight it gave to the background of the story. However, I could have done without the addition of the scribe/angel/dying woman portion that was at the beginning and end of the tale.
Nov 15, 2008 Amy rated it really liked it
This book took a different spin on the Anne Boleyn/Henry VIII love affair. It also took a look into Sir Thomas More's life and his persecution of "heterics" of the time. Then it tells the story of the persecuted Bible readers in a time when the church wanted to keep the Word out of the people's hands. It all comes together to present a compelling, well-written story. You will never read your Bible the same after this!
Nov 30, 2011 Dani rated it it was ok
Unfortunately I found this book a little confusing. I enjoyed the storys of Anne and Rose, but found Bridget's "story" vague, short and therefore confusing. I was saddened that we didn't get to go into more detail about her and what ever happened with David. I also found that it ended quite abruptly.
On a plus side, I am not usually a fan of this period in history, yet I found this rendition of Anne Boleyn's story quite interesting.
Jul 12, 2011 Cindyanne rated it really liked it
Great read, and portrays Anne Boleyn as more of a victim of circumstance instead of the husband-stealing wench most other books (and history) reveal her as. You also get to see how if William Tyndale had not written the Bible for the common man, we would still be seeking the supposedly "Godly wisdom" and forgiveness from priests instead of forming a one-on-one relationship with Jesus and the Father.
Sep 15, 2014 Holly rated it it was ok
OK... this was bizarre and a little weird, but I'm glad I read it. It was an interesting way to tell a history story and I found myself wanting to know more about the time period and the real characters. But sometimes I was confused about what was really going on. I also found the ending a lot disappointing. No fairy tale there...

The overall, theme and message of the story was good.
Oct 14, 2008 Erin rated it liked it
The best part of this book, for me, were the author's notes at the end. That was where everything came together and the message finally hit home. It was enjoyable enough as a historical fiction focusing on King Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn and Thomas More, but the fight for the emergence of our English Bibles was the real story here.
Sep 22, 2008 DeAnn rated it liked it
Beginning was a little hard to follow I think because I didn't get the "Scribe" part at first. I'm relatively unread when it comes to Anne Boleyn, but it was a different side to her than I've read elsewhere. Loved the discussion questions at the end. I think it would be fun to discuss this in a group over coffee. :)
April Erwin
Oct 17, 2008 April Erwin rated it liked it
Very exciting and intriguing. This period in history has always interested me and Ginger's take is unique. I don't think I've ever read about Thomas Moore in quite this way before. The narrative is strong and evocative and the characters well defined. It's worth the read, even if you're new to historical novels.

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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Dec 17, 2014 10:38AM  
  • The Triumph of Grace (Grace in Africa, #3)
  • Isle of Shadows (Seven Wonders, #3)
  • Springtime of the Spirit (The Great War, #3)
  • Valeria's Cross
  • Flame of Resistance
  • Rebel (The Brides of Alba #3)
  • Two Crosses (Secrets of the Cross Trilogy #1)
  • Informed Consent
  • The Beginning (Chronicles of Heaven)
  • Sarai (Wives of the Patriarchs, # 1)
  • He Who Lifts the Skies (Genesis, #2)
  • Before the Scarlet Dawn (Daughters of the Potomac, #1)
  • Heiress (Daughters of Fortune, #1)
  • Written on Silk (The Silk House, #2)
  • Love's Rescue (The Sierra Chronicles #1)
  • Reinventing Rachel
  • The Restitution (Legacy of the King's Pirates, #3)
  • Cooking the Books (Sloane Templeton Mysteries #1)
Ginger Garrett is the author of the Chronicles of the Scribes series (In the Shadow of Lions, In the Arms of Immortals, In the Eyes of Eternity), Wolves Among Us, Chosen, Desired, Dark Hour, and Beauty Secrets of the Bible. Chosen: The Lost Diaries of Queen Esther was recognized as one of the top five novels of 2006 by the ECPA.

Focusing on ancient women's history, Ginger creates novels and nonfict
More about Ginger Garrett...

Other Books in the Series

Chronicles of the Scribe (3 books)
  • In the Arms of Immortals: A Novel of Darkness and Light (Chronicles of the Scribe, #2)
  • Wolves Among Us (Chronicles of the Scribe, #3)

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