Kelsey's Reviews > The Other Boleyn Girl

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
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's review
Aug 07, 08

bookshelves: historical-fiction, general-fiction, 2008
Read in August, 2008


That is honestly all I can really say after reading this book. I had several issues with it, and at the same time, I enjoyed several aspects about it.

The main reasons I didn't like about this book:
1. The vulgarity. Sure, this is not the most bawdy book I have ever read--but it is close. The details it gives about "whore tricks" and other sexual practices are somewhat disturbing. I can hardly imagine what a teen would think if subjected to this book.

2. The classification. I am a conneseiur of good historical fiction. Having heard of this book, I thought I might give it a try. Be forewarned this book is far from historical fiction . It is closer to a modern, more obscene version of a Jane Austen novel. Don't get me wrong, the book does have some historical evidence in it--but for the most part, it is just a romantic tale of couple after couple after couple.

3. The writing (partially). As I have read elsewhere, Gregory does one thing really well in this book: she makes you dislike the main character Anne Boleyn. I can't think of another book that I have had that much distaste for one of the main characters. Shouldn't an author try to get you to like her characters? (At least present the truth and then let you decide if they are good or bad?)

4. The plot. At times this book seemed to lack a plot. It just kind of drudged along. ...meh...

What I did like about this book:

1. The sappy romance: All one has to do is look at the cover of this book and realize that it is a sappy chick book. With that in mind, be prepared for some think romance in this book. It was Mary's later courtings allowed me to enjoy some of the romance presented in this book.

2. The writing about court: I enjoyed reading Gregory's words of how the royal court dined and entertained themselves. How most girls had dozens of fine gowns... Wine was used to "wake one up" in the morning... Other details such of those were very enjoyable for me.

3. The organization. The book was organized by season and year making it helpful to reference where you were in the story. Believe it or not, I recall that about 8 years pass in this one book.

Overall, this book was okay. It wasn't phenomenal...and I probably won't read it again. But now at least I can watch the movie and say..."Hey! I actually read this book before I saw the movie."
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