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The Favored Queen: A Novel of Henry VIII's Third Wife

3.51  ·  Rating details ·  1,704 ratings  ·  180 reviews
From The New York Times bestselling author of The Last Wife of Henry VIII comes a powerful and moving novel about Jane Seymour, third wife of Henry VIII, who married him only days after the execution of Anne Boleyn and ultimately lost her own life in giving him the son he badly needed to guarantee the Tudor succession

Born into an ambitious noble family, young Jane Seym
Paperback, 320 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published September 27th 2011)
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3.51  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,704 ratings  ·  180 reviews

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The Book Maven
Do yourself a favor and don't read this book. A nice alternative would be Plain Jane: a novel of Jane Seymour (Jun 2006), by Laurien Gardner. Although I have not read it, it got a good review from Library Journal and it would have to be better than this book.

The other alternative would be for one of you fair readers to write your own novel. I'd read it. I promise.

Now, on to the review.

Really? Really?

Like many other folks on this
I knew within the first ten pages that this book would be a challenge. The way Jane is written, she seems to suffer from "special snowflake syndrome". You know, the "I'm not like other girls, I'm completely different, I'm the favorite of Queen Catherine", etc.

Why on Earth would a writer, who claims that they’ve done all this research and have written both fiction and nonfiction books on Tudor-esque subjects, perpetuate a rumour that was disproved back in 1876? Clearly, if Anne Boleyn had “a fin
I picked up this book because I'm interested in the Tudor family, particularly in Henry VIII's decision to break from Rome in pursuit of a male heir. But I was disappointed with the way Erickson handled Henry's 'Great Matter'. The story started out interesting and fairly fast-paced, but once Henry set Catherine aside and married Anne Erickson started skimming through time/events very quickly. It was like Erickson decided everyone already knew the history so she just wrote the bare minimum to get ...more
Sep 29, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm sorry, this was bad! I did not enjoy this at all. I was looking forward to reading this for a while also. Too many inconsistencies, and VERY far fetched. I know this is fiction, but could the author at least try to stick to the well known history behind this??? After getting 3/4 through this I had to stop. I kept trying to finish, but it was like pulling teeth! I even skipped ahead to see if it was worth carrying wasn't. I don't know, maybe it's just me, but too far away from the st ...more
For some reason, I feel a loyalty bond with Carolly Erickson. Although, we all complain about her “historical entertainments” and her use of speculation and inaccuracies; something draws me to read her books (I still haven’t read her non-fiction works but plan to). Sadly, as much as I tried to push myself, I couldn’t finish The Favored Queen. Yes, it WAS THAT bad.

I truly gave The Favored Queen a hearty attempt (I was around page 100) but after much debate, I closed the book. The Favored Queen s

At first, I would've given this book a five star rating. The writing and details are great; easy-to-read and interesting. Halfway through the book though, I began to realize that it wasn't about Jane Seymour, it was about Anne Boleyn and the Nun of Kent (Elizabeth Barton) told from Jane Seymour's point of view. So far, I haven't come across any books that mention the Nun of Kent at all, so I did learn something. . . and that is always a bonus. But because I felt the book wasn't really abou
I liked the idea of using Jane Seymour's voice to narrate her time in Henry viii's court until her marriage and sadly her death after birth of Prince Edward
a quiet careful lady who I have a fondness for as she tried to live a quiet life whilst being a member of the royal Tudor court.
I initially thought I was going to like this book as it follows Jane Seymour at Court when Henry VIII is trying to put aside Queen Catherine to marry Anne Boleyn. However the book after a while goes from Tudor novel based on fact into utter ridiculous bodice ripping fiction which is when I got fed up with it and stopped reading it.

In this version Jane has always wanted to marry Will, the son of friends of the Seymours but their union is threatened when her own father has relations with Will's yo
Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: club-blogring
Cada vez gosto mais de romances históricos. Bem sei que nem tudo o que é contado foi real mas por isso mesmo acho engraçado, não sou fanática do rigor histórico e acho piada que se tentem encontrar várias versões para a mesma história. Por isso gostei bastante deste livro, tendo simpatizado bastante com a personagem principal Jane. Apenas achei que algumas partes da história era um pouco precipitadas e podiam ter sido contadas com mais calma, ou seja, o livro podia ter sido um pouco mais longo. ...more
Aug 01, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
As an amateur Tudor expert (gleaned mainly from the show by that title), I feel that Erickson has, yet again, put herself on par with the likes of Alison Weir and Philippa Gregory in capturing an excellent fact and fiction mix in this, her latest book. She gives some excellent background and deals with some of the poignant issues and developments, while leading the reader down a historically accurate path of the rise and fall of the first two wives of Henry VIII before his selection of Jane Seym ...more
Andreea  Drăgan
Mar 03, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Cumparata din Immedio Gara de Nord.

Shitty book.

Se contrazice prea mult. La 5 pagini maxim contrazicea ce a zis initial. Plus ca orice femeie sanatoasa la cap nu s-ar fi casatorit cu nebunul ala. Also, (view spoiler)

Traducerea in romana e execrabila, multe greseli gramaticale, cuvinte in plus sau in minus, propozitii care nu aveau sens, dezacorduri, un
Jun 13, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

Words fail me to describe how bad this book is.

It’s the equivalent a few high schoolers scrolling through the Wikipedia entry on Henry VIII, picking out a few key words, and performing Jane Seymour’s life as a sexy interpretive dance

Look at me, I did research, I’ve got all the names of the historical people of the time period! The book screams as it tap dances around the facts. Um, yeah, ok, you got the names – but your presentation of the facts, while not always wrong per say, are always warped
A Miuda Geek
Jul 15, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Um livro fluido e fácil de ler sobre Jane Seymour, 3a mulher de Henrique VIII de Inglaterra.

Embora fácil, o livro não se aprofundou muito quanto á politica do reino e as movimentações da corte. Aliás, Jane apenas aparece por si própria nas ultimas páginas do livro. Talvez o facto de o livro estar escrito como se fosse um diário dela prejudique o poder ser mais aprofundado, pois Jane não era um animal politico como Ana Bolena ou Catarina de Aragão.

Aconselho a quem se queira iniciar no mundo dos T
I was pretty impressed with Erickson's why-let-the-facts-get-in-the-way-of-a-good-story approach to Jane Seymour--Henry VIII's third wife-who is usually portrayed in these kind of books as a boring goody-two-shoes. Erickson calls her work "historical entertainment" and cautions that she's played fast and loose with the documentation. Thus, her Jane is promiscuous, devious, quick-witted, and very entertaining. O.K., so I might not use this book to teach English history. But then again, I don't te ...more
Andrea Jensen
Dec 15, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
If you have any sense of Tudor era history this book will be nearly impossible to read. I agree with another reviewer that it would have made more sense to have the fiction warning at the front of the book instead of the back. History has been rewritten so much as to be laughable.
1.5 stars. This is the highly fictionalized story of Henry VIII's favorite wife, Queen Pollyanna (aka, Jane) Seymour. She is perfect and good and kind and sweet and the only one trusted by everyone at court. She not only is Queen Katherine of Aragon's closest (English) confidante, but all of the other ladies in waiting and maids of honor love her, too. Except, of course, for Anne Jezebel Boleyn. But it's only natural that Anne hates Jane---after all, Anne is not only conniving and manipulative, ...more
Feb 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: historical fiction fans
Yet another book about Tudor England! This time the book was told through the voice of Jane Seymour, Henry VIII's third wife. It is so sad to me in modern times to think about a person marrying for position and/or money with no account for love. Jane would have had a much happier life if she had married her beloved Will for her childhood or her passionate Galyon from her twenties. Alas, it wasn't meant to be an she became another of Henry's conquests. I wonder how her life might have played out ...more
Oct 22, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kobo
This wasn't the first "historical entertainment" by Carolly Erickson that I've read. For the reader looking into trying out an Erickson, be forewarned; it's not a history lesson. While these books feature familiar historical personages, they're not historically accurate. Similar to when a new Nicholas Sparks comes out on the market, I know that I'll still pick up Erickson's latest fast and loose retelling of history. The Favored Queen, could possibly have been subtitled "Why British History tend ...more
Apr 17, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Recommended to Allison by: Library
Shelves: england
I picked this book up off the Best Seller's table at the library. I enjoy Tudor England books (guilty pleasure, I guess you'd say, because they're not really that enlightening but they are entertaining) and thought I'd pick this one up since I couldn't find any of the other books I was looking for. So, that kind of sums it up. I didn't necessarily want to read it, it looked ok, it was hard to get through to a certain extent, but I read it and it was just ok.

According to some other reviews, the i
Carole Rae
*Me and B did a joint review! With Q&A questions. Follow the link: *

In summary, this was an okay book. Certainly better then the last one I read from Carolly Erickson. This was light and a quick read. I am Team Anne, but it was nice reading about Jane for a change. Honestly, this is my first book in Jane's POV. Crazy, right? Anne was a total and utter bitch in this book, but Jane would perceive this especially when she was trying to win the heart of th
Blodeuedd Finland
I do not mind that she took freedom with things, even if we know things, they did not then.

It's a book about Jane Seymour. We get to see her as a lady in waiting to Queen Catherine, then to Queen Anne. And we get to see what that all means, courtship, danger, death. The book does skip a lot, as it has a lot of ground to cover in just 300 pages. But I do not mind a few timejumps when the author wants to take in the big events.

What I liked best was that it was so easy to read, light, flowing and s
Linda Harkins
Apr 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Attractive, demure, intelligent, and trustworthy, lovely Jane Seymour is Queen Catherine's favorite lady-in-waiting. Conniving, self-centered, and mean-spirited, Lady Anne Boleyn catches Henry VIII's eye through her exquisite dancing and extroverted personality. Henry, in fact, becomes so enamored of Anne that he impregnates her even before he can conclude his nullity suit against Catherine. We know what became of Anne Boleyn. What about Jane, the king's third wife? Embellished by the novelist's ...more
Probably more of a 2.5...

Ms. Erickson should have maybe put her note to the reader before the book and not after. "Once again, dear reader, a caution and a reminder: The Favored Queen is a historical entertainment, in which the authentic past and imaginative invention intertwine... Fresh interpretations of historical figures and their circumstances are offered, and traditional ones laid aside."

And it probably doesn't help that I was really looking forward to this book. Oh well. It just wasn't t
Vanessa Montês

Jane Seymor é uma personagem pouco explorada da época de Henrique VIII. Depois da opulência e escândalos ocorridos durante o casamento do rei com Ana Bolena, este acabou por casar com uma rapariga pacata, que apenas queria uma vida pacífica. Uma rapariga muito querida por todos que a conheciam e um amor de pessoa. Uma das esposas de Henrique cujo reinado foi dos mais pequenos, mas que acabou por morrer de morte natural após dar à luz um herdeiro para inglaterra. Um livro muito bom, um
Stephanie Tracy
Nov 05, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm surprised to see all the negative reviews of this book, because I actually really liked it! This is the first one of Carolly Erickson's books, and I was very pleasantly surprised, as I thought a novel about Jane Seymour would be boring. I know it's a bit far-fetched, in terms of the romantic rendezvous she has in the book (which I don't believe actually happened), it made the story more interesting! I think Erickson did a nice job with this book, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. My advice would ...more
Jul 30, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am glad I won a copy of this book. I looked forward to reading this book because I love historical novels. The book started off good but half way through the book I felt like Erickson was rushing everything. The book left me feeling unsatisfied because I feel like a huge chunk of Jane's life was left out. For example, her life married to Henry VIII. I really don't see how she is the "favored queen" based on how he treated her in the book.
L-J Johnson
A good, serviceable historical fiction. Erickson did a different take on Jane Seymour than I have read before and that was refreshing and interesting, even though I didn't think it rang totally true historically. Erickson is brilliant at straight history and good at historical fiction; I will definitely continue to read all of her titles.
Sep 29, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
If you want your usual portrayal of poor, shallow Jane Seymour, read Plain Jane. If you want a more compelling rendering of her, go for Wolf Hall. Don't waste your money on this book unless you're looking for nothing: Erickson is a decent biographer but clearly isn't gifted as a novelist, and although she calls her writing "historical entertainment" she just can't entertain.
Brittany B.
Tabloid trash.

Shockingly false, and not about Jane's life. DNF at halfway point. If it weren't such a pile of rubbish I wouldn't rate a book I didn't finish. Ms. Erickson should be ashamed of this book. The worst and most inaccurate story I've yet read about the court of Henry VIII
Telma Duarte
Não é que não tenha gostado, mas esperava mais.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 05, 2015 10:08AM  
  • The Queen's Pleasure
  • At the Mercy of the Queen
  • Her Mother's Daughter: A Novel of Queen Mary Tudor
  • No Will But His: A Novel of Kathryn Howard
  • The King's Confidante (Tudor Saga, #6)
  • To Serve a King
  • At the King's Pleasure  (Secrets of the Tudor Court, #4 )
  • The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr (Ladies in Waiting #2)
  • Dear Heart, How Like You This?: The Cost of Love.
  • I, Jane (In the Court of Henry VIII, #4)
  • Catherine Howard: The Queen Whose Adulteries Made a Fool of Henry VIII
  • Mistress of Mourning
  • The Sumerton Women (Tudor Court #3)
  • A Lady Raised High: A Novel of Anne Boleyn
  • Pale Rose of England
  • The Fifth Queen
Distinguished historian Carolly Erickson is the author of The Hidden Diary of Marie Antoinette, The First Elizabeth, Great Catherine, Alexandra and many other prize-winning works of fiction and nonfiction. She lives in Hawaii.