Erin's Reviews > The King's Concubine: England's Most Scandalous Mistress

The King's Concubine by Anne O'Brien
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's review
May 02, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: netgalley, historical-medieval, read-in-2012
Read from May 16 to 23, 2012

[I was given a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review]

2 stars.

Alice Perrers - "England's Most Scandalous Mistress"! Haven't they all been given this dubious title at some point? I wouldn't say that Alice Perrers is the most famous royal concubine - but perhaps that's why a book about her should be more interesting to the jaded historical fiction fan.

Little is known about the real Alice, other than her two marriages and her some 15 year long love affair with King Edward III, during which she displayed impressive foresight and ingenuity by collecting land and manors to see her through when her royal lover is dead. With these scant facts, Anne O'Brien has developed quite a believable - though rather unpalatable - protagonist.

I am struggling with this review because I cannot put my finger on what it was about Anne O'Brien's writing style that I took issue with. It didn't grip me at all; to be honest, I was bored and I skim-read the last quarter of the book (even then it took me over a week to finish, that's a very long time for me!). The story didn't impact on me enough to be able to give a concise review but maybe that is all I need to say...?

With the multitude of truly excellent historical novelists and novels out there, I would recommend that this book be given a miss.

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Reading Progress

05/22/2012 page 240
62.0% "I'm growing bored, to be honest..."

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