My rating: 3 of 5 stars A copy of Queen's Gambit was provided to me by Simon & Schuster/Edelweiss for review purposes.
'One day, hundreds of years fMy rating: 3 of 5 stars A copy of Queen's Gambit was provided to me by Simon & Schuster/Edelweiss for review purposes.
'One day, hundreds of years from now, people will tell stories about the court of King Henry and the romance of it all - the Eighth King Henry and his Six Wives. But will they tell of the terror that came with it, she wonders, or will it be made to seem a golden age?'
Queen's Gambit opens with the eminent death of Katherine Parr's second husband, John Neville, Lord Latimer. While still in mourning, she is requested by the King's daughter Mary, a childhood friend, to visit her at court. Shortly after her arrival she meets and falls in love with Thomas Seymour, the man who will leave an indelible mark upon her. The idea of a life with Thomas is snubbed out when King Henry VIII offers her a marriage invitation where no is not an option.
The story is ultimately told from the POV of Katherine, however, we are also given glimpses from the POV of her lady's maid and of her doctor Huicke. It portrayed how it was like to live in this time period as royalty and as a low-born. Unfortunately, the change in POV felt very jarring when you're absorbed in the story of the Queen and I think I would have enjoyed it much more if it was solely Katherine's story.
Towards the middle-part of the story the pace slowed down and it became infinitely less interesting to me mainly because it became less about the characters and more about the politics and strife going on in England at the time. Considering I know quite a bit about the history in England during the Tudor time period this was a bit redundant for me, albeit still somewhat interesting. I understand that this of course needs to be included some-how but I felt that the characters ultimately got placed on the back burner while the refresher course on 'The History of England' was taking place.
Queen's Gambit managed to maintain historical accuracy to a degree without overdoing the embellishing in areas that are less known. It's a well-told story of one of the lesser known queens, yet she's still without a doubt one that has the greatest story to tell: the story of how she managed to survive.
"You still remember that?" she said. "How we used to play that we were at court?" "Used to?" I said. "We never stopped." The game had just changed - fro"You still remember that?" she said. "How we used to play that we were at court?" "Used to?" I said. "We never stopped." The game had just changed - from little girls playing princesses to a more grown-up and complicated hierarchy of status and favor.
I am far from a professional when it comes to history but I would consider myself a huge fan of the Tudor era. I've read up on the era enough to know the majority of what occurred but possibly not enough to point out historical inaccuracies when I read a story like Gilt. Based on what I do know; however, it is important to me that these stories maintain as much of the true to life story as possible. That said, I feel that the author did an outstanding job of the story of Catherine 'Cat' Howard and how she became the fifth wife of Henry VIII. Was it completely accurate? No. But it was damn fun. I've read stories about Katherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, and Anne of Cleves, so it was interesting to finally read a story on Catherine Howard.
The story is told from the POV of Kitty Tylney, Cat's best friend, who is sent to court in order to stay close to Catherine and to keep a close eye on her at court. The two grew up together and were wild; always having fun of some sort. Midnight parties. Sharing their bed with boys. Cat was the Queen of Misrule over all the girls living in the house and had no idea that someday she would be a true Queen. Queen of England.
Cat was quite the stuck-up brat and I know for a fact I would not have enjoyed it as much if I had to listen to a story told through her eyes. Kitty was an extremely realistic character that I loved for her strength and determination. Life at court was as can be expected with the lies, the cheating, the double-crossing, and all the disloyalty anyone could ask for. I was hooked from page one.
I'm a huge historical fiction fan; however, I have had a difficult time finding good YA historical fiction that I truly enjoy. I'm happy to say that this one has an official spot at the very top of that list. Am quite excited to see how the author continues this series!...more
3/25/2012 - Alright, I love me some Tudors but I could not get into this one. It could have been the audioboGoing to attempt to re-read this in print.
3/25/2012 - Alright, I love me some Tudors but I could not get into this one. It could have been the audiobook and I may have enjoyed it more if I went the print route, possibly. But after 4 hours of listening I just wasn't looking forward to the next 19 hours....more
It took me FOREVER to finish this book... primarily because of how the author portrayed Queen Elizabeth. If this was an honest depiction or not, she wIt took me FOREVER to finish this book... primarily because of how the author portrayed Queen Elizabeth. If this was an honest depiction or not, she was a truly annoying and whiny woman! Which typical novels/movies about Queen Elizabeth are quite the opposite. The novel didn't ever seem to be going anywhere either. Patience definitely required for this book. ...more
It took me a while to read this novel and even longer to really get into it. Overall though I enjoyed the story and am still a huge fan of Philippa GrIt took me a while to read this novel and even longer to really get into it. Overall though I enjoyed the story and am still a huge fan of Philippa Gregory. :)...more