Jen's Reviews > The Sisters Who Would Be Queen: Mary, Katherine, and Lady Jane Grey: A Tudor Tragedy

The Sisters Who Would Be Queen by Leanda de Lisle
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's review
Jan 28, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: english-history, european-history
Read from January 28 to February 14, 2011

Jane Grey has always been almost a mythical creature for me. She certainly wasn't three-dimensional. The common view of her is this maligned child, forced on to the throne, forced to wed, and then brutally sacrificed to preserve Mary's throne. She is seen as the tool of everyone around her.

However, the real story is far more interesting. Jane was less the innocent victim, and more self-aware than portrayed. She was far more involved, more angry, and more the spokeswoman for her religion than the movies and many book tell you. It also makes her more compelling--though she still didn't need her head chopped off.

Her two sisters were also punished for daring to be related to the throne, and possibly threaten Elizabeth. Both were on house arrest for much of their lives for daring to marry and possibly bear an heir--neither of which Elizabeth planned to do.

Also, the struggle of these four women reveals the role that women were given in the 16th century politics--and the frustration of not only them, but the men surrounding the throne.

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