Sarah Whitney's Reviews > The Other Boleyn Girl

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
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Mar 30, 12

bookshelves: 2012, c-and-co, historical-fiction, library
Read in March, 2012

Before I say anything, I'd like to first and foremost admit that my knowledge in history is severely lacking. I was not a good student in school, and of all the subjects I floated through, history was certainly one of the subjects that took the hardest hit. Plus, they didn't have the History Channel when I was in school, which would have been WAY better than the lackluster instructors that turned me off to the past. That said, the only thing I really know about King Henry the Eighth is that he existed at some point in time and there is a children's song about him (and I do not even know the lyrics to said song).

Given that I have no previous knowledge or opinion of King Henry the Eighth, his first wife Queen Katherine, or any of the Boleyns for that matter, I went along with the story just fine, finding things quite believable (even though, as a work of historical fiction, we all know that they are not truth). I was not shocked, upset, or disappointed with Gregory's treatment of the characters like some readers have expressed, simply because I was a blank slate that knew next to nothing about these historical figures or their lives to begin with. So, while I found the work to be pretty entertaining, I accept that it is a deviation from historical fact.

The book sucked me and kept my attention quite well for most of it's duration (600+ pages) however it did lag a bit about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way through. It just hit a couple of points when all I could think was "Is Anne ever going to marry the King already?" and "Is Anne ever going to get pregnant and carry a baby to term again?" Of course, given the nature of the book, the drama carried me through. And although many people have said the depiction of Mary's character was historically inaccurate (as well as the King's and Anne's for that matter), it didn't mean I couldn't relate to her wanting to get the hell out of that court and live a more pure and simple life with the man she loved in the country. I'd churn butter any day over having to deal with the stuff that went down in the court.

So, overall, a pretty entertaining read and a page turner.
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03/19/2012 page 142
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