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Virgin: Prelude to the Throne

3.68  ·  Rating Details  ·  961 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Virgin: Prelude to the Throne
Paperback, 256 pages
Published June 25th 2002 by Touchstone (first published April 5th 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,221)
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Feb 04, 2010 Lucy rated it really liked it
If you're a follower of my blog, then surely you know that of all English monarchs, Elizabeth I is in No way my favourite...Sorry- but that's just the way it is. There's just something cold, calculating and non-feeling about her- for me..yet, I keep reading more and more books on her. There's something intriguing about her that's for sure. Or maybe, I just won't allow myself to believe that what you see is what you get-- and nothing so far has really moved me to change my opinion of her...

May 15, 2010 Carol rated it liked it
The title's a bit melodramatic, but this book was pretty good. It's about Elizabeth I, covering her dangerous infatuation/flirtation with Thomas Seymour. Elizabeth was in her early teens at the time, but was very intelligent and astute. However, she still fell into the snare of Seymour, a cold, ambitious, manipulative, yet overwhelmingly charismatic man.
Maxwell does a great job with portraying the ambitions of the Tudor nobility and the courtly intrigue they engaged in. She's also terrific at ma
Stacy Spoonster
Mar 26, 2015 Stacy Spoonster rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Virgin Elizabeth

Very good story telling. There are a few places that diverge from the historical evidence and general character of the folks involved but that is why this is fiction and this didn't have any baring on my overall rating. The main reason for taking off a star is that parts of the book were slow and there are some jarring transitions from character perspectives. I did enjoy the book and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical fiction. It should be kept in mind that th
Aug 21, 2015 Mollyjr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good read

Written mostly about the time the Princess Elizabeth lived with her Stepmother, the Dowager Queen, Catherine Parr....the last wife of Henry VIII (after his death and during the reign of Edward, her brother). It also dealt with the relationship between the Princess and the Lord High Admiral, Thomas Seymour. Although the author tried to stay close to history, there is very little known about the true relationship of Seymour and the Princess. This is probably the first time that Elizabet
Feb 25, 2009 Kristy rated it liked it
Usually it does not take me this long to read a 230-odd page book! I guess it was because it was a slow starter. (That and I was rereading "Breaking Dawn"!). But a lil over halfway through the pace picked up and boom done.

This book takes us back to Elizabeth I as a teenager, after her father's death. Her 10 year old brother, Edward, is now King, his uncle Edward Seymour, his Protector. She lives with her stepmother, Catherine Parr, who shortly marries Thomas Seymour, King Edward's other uncle a
Lady of the Lake
Oct 11, 2008 Lady of the Lake rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Those who like HF but don't require accuracy
The historical part of this story is not very believable I give a 2 however the enjoyment factor ofthe story I give a 4 making it a 3....? I enjoyed it but did not believe it. I learned long ago to seperate the two because I'm not a historical scholor nor a literary snob but I "like what I like" and my historical FICTION does not have to be always spot on accurate I'm smart enough not to believe anything that is in the FICTION realm. Some authors should not call themselves historians however! I' ...more
Nov 04, 2011 Sorcha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
Set early in the life of Elizabeth, Daughter of the Great Henry VIII, this is a part fictionalised version of her life and the scheming that she gets involved in. She is still only 15 by the book's end, so we dont see the woman who eventually ascends the throne to rule in an almost manly fashion for over 40 years. She is in fact young and immature, and infatuated with her step mother's plotting new husband.[return][return]I did find the book a little too modern in some of the language that the c ...more
kerry s. martin
Dec 07, 2015 kerry s. martin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rating of "Virgin Elizabeth:A Novel"

This rating was chosen for this author as a lot of the material has been written or covered by other authors. A tale that is smoothly written ,easy to read and comprehend. For anyone looking to read about the Queen Elizabeth's Life.
I'm in the midst of reading "Wolf Hall" by Hilary Mantel and sort of appreciate the diversion in Virgin. It was a perfect vacation book, and achieved the central goal I have in any historical fiction: to imagine the frame of reference and the constraints in which historical figures operated to better appreciate the outcomes. On the one hand, I've new heightened sense for how shamelessly political royal and noble families were (especially with respect to pimping their children for their own gains ...more
Feb 01, 2014 Anjanet rated it really liked it
This is a great, and quick, story of a small period of Queen Elizabeth's life. This targeted view shows her as a young "teenager" who makes mistakes in life and learns from those mistakes, instead of the uptight never faltering women she becomes.

A great story of learning to forgive and make amends with oneself.
Jun 15, 2009 Tita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: meus, livros-2009
Este livro relata-nos a vida de Isabel, logo após a morte de seu pai - Henrique VIII. Isabel fica a viver com a sua madrasta, Catarina Parr, que sempre desmonstrou carinho por Isabel, tendo mesmo convencido Henrique a voltar a legitimar Isabel e a sua irmã Maria; mesmo após esta ter casado com Thomas Seymour.
No entanto, Seymour tenta seduzir a jovem ISabel, que ingenuamente se apaixona por este.
Paralelamente, assistimos às movimentações de Thomas, que movido pela sua sede de poder, tenta tornar-
Erin Cornelius
Dec 22, 2015 Erin Cornelius rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was well-written and possibly one of the best portrayals of the relationship between Princesss Elizabeth and Thomas Seymour. It had some slow moments, but it also did justice to the characters portrayed in the novel. A great read for anyone interested in historical fiction.
Grace C
Jun 24, 2008 Grace C rated it did not like it
A BIG disappointment after "The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn". This is the story of a 13-year-old Elizabeth, a queen to be that would someday lead England to its Golden Age. And yet, she was portrayed as a love-struck teenager, caught in having a crush with her stepmother's lover. There is much much much more to a young Elizabeth. What about her imprisonment in the Tower, her friendship with Robert Dudley, her yearn of love from her long lost parents? There are more better issues to be addressed ...more
May 27, 2014 Lindsey rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading this book but kept thinking that I had read it before. It is so similar to Weir's The Lady Elizabeth.
Apr 18, 2012 Anna rated it liked it
Shelves: in-hungarian
So, I borrowed this book from a friend a really long time ago. I've been feeling guilty from time to time, but it wasn't a big deal. However, a couple of days ago I felt like reading something Anne Boleyn relate, so I picked this up.
I don't deny that it was very interesting and that I was hooked for that night, I read a hundred pages but after that I was only able to read while I was travelling. "Mademoiselle Boleyn" is my favourite Robin Maxwell book (and Anne Boleyn related as well), so after
Katie Pesznecker
Jan 18, 2014 Katie Pesznecker rated it did not like it
I love Tudor-era novels. I hated this book.
Danielle Reily
Apr 21, 2013 Danielle Reily rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. It was well written and fun to read. Robin Maxwell does a great job of being historically accurate where possible. When there are no details known, only historical rumors, Maxwell makes assumptions based on facts. I don't agree with all of the leaps she made, but it is interesting. A very fun historical fiction.
Jul 16, 2009 Ashlee rated it liked it
I liked this book. It was a good little historical fiction synapses of Elizabeth's teenage years. I enjoyed how the story was told mainly between Princess Elizabeth, Catherine Parr, and a little bit of Thomas Seymour. It is a very easy read. Nothing to really complain about and nothing to really brag about.
This book describes the two year period of Elizabeth Tudor's teenage years in which she is involved with Thomas Seymour. I enjoyed the author's take on the events, including some of her 'guesses' as to what might have happened during this episode, which is not well documented historically.
Vince Barco
Jun 23, 2015 Vince Barco rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book though there are better novels based on the same time frame.
Susan Evans
Aug 04, 2012 Susan Evans rated it it was amazing
Loved this one! Yes, liberties were taken as this is historical FICTION, but I found it refreshing and fascinating to read about what could have been. This period of Elizabeth's life is frequently ignored...thank you, Robin Maxwell, for filling in the blanks!
Feb 20, 2009 Susan rated it really liked it
Having read Philippa Gregory's, The Virgin's Lover, this was a good look at Elizabeth prior to that time. Interesting to "get to know" the girl who would one day be one of England's finest monarchs. Simply love these historical novels.
Nov 15, 2012 Jaclyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

I enjoyed the read. I love Tudor history. However, this was about Queen Elizabeth as a teenager and I was really hoping it was about her reign. It was still an engaging read. I plan to read more Robin Maxwell.
Bekah L
May 22, 2008 Bekah L rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those interested in 'The Other Boleyn Girl'
This book is a sequel to 'The Other Boleyn Girl'. This book is about Queen Elizabeth who is the daughter of Mary Boleyn and King Henry and her rise to power. The author is a great writer and it was a very interesting read.
Aug 30, 2008 Amy rated it liked it
I've read another of Maxwell's books, The Wild Irish and greatly loved the writing and story of that book. I wasn't as impressed with this one. But it's an enjoyable book for anyone who is into Elizabethan history.
Fiona Hewlett-parker
Nov 30, 2013 Fiona Hewlett-parker rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013-reads
Very intriguing recreation of what could have happened in the two years after Henry 8th's death. Building on the rumours and absence of commentary in the official record of the day. I quite liked it.
Finished Nov 30th
Jan 19, 2010 Kate rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was not impressed with this story. It is about Elizabeth I before the throne and her involvement with Thomas Seymour. It is familiar subject matter and the book is nothing I haven't read before.
Jul 05, 2010 Jodie rated it really liked it
I really enjoy the way Robin Maxwell spins a story. This was a good one too. Elizabeth was just a fascinating woman, but I would expect nothing less from the daughter of King Henry and Anne Boleyn.
Apr 24, 2012 Bonnie rated it it was ok
I don't expect historical fiction to adhere perfectly to history but this was egregious. The author note said their primary source was Carolly Erickson...which explains a lot.
May 02, 2013 Cookie rated it really liked it
Best read yet of the set of novels by this author. I must say that Thomas Seymour, was a perverted old man & to have Ms Parr particpate in some of the things they did...yuck.
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Robin Maxwell began writing novels about the historical figures she had been obsessing about since graduating from Tufts University with a degree in Occupational Therapy. Her first novel, "The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn," now in its 24th printing, won two YA awards and has been translated into fourteen languages. "The Wild Irish" - an epic tale of Ireland's rebel queen, Grace O'Malley - closed ou ...more
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