Angie's Reviews > The Reluctant Queen: The Story of Anne of York

The Reluctant Queen by Jean Plaidy
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's review
Jul 18, 2010

really liked it
Read from July 11 to 17, 2010 — I own a copy

This is between a 3.5 and 4 star book...

I am a big Jean Plaidy fan, but I was a bit disappointed in this book. I can't really blame her, though. It is all Philippa Gregory's fault! I loved her book The White Queen and loved how Elizabeth Woodville was portrayed. I had never at that point had read anything about her. This book about Anne Neville was much the same story, but from the "enemies" eyes. Anne paints an awful picture of Elizabeth and her family. You get all the bad and none of the good. That was hard to read for me because I liked her! But, maybe it is justified...As she is telling the story we should expect nothing less, I guess. King Edward IV is portrayed the same, but as a bigger philanderer.

I think the book was interesting and I learned some things about Anne Neville that aren't brought out in Gregory's The White Queen. Was she really kidnapped and made to work in a cookshop? Plaidy's work is usually more fact than ficiton so I am guessing that story to be true. In all fairness, if I had read this first I might not have loved White Queen as much, but so to speak, the damage has been done! This book is told in first person narrative, and was easy enough reading, but the ending leaves something to be desired. It ends when our storyteller dies, so King Richard is still on the throne and it gives us no closure on the ending of his reign. It is a little too abrupt.

As far as Plaidy's writing goes, it is usually good with a few exceptions. This was not one of my favorites, but mainly for reasons listed above.

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