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The Queen's Fool (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels #12)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  79,794 Ratings  ·  2,975 Reviews
#1 New York Times bestselling author and “queen of royal fiction” (USA TODAY) Philippa Gregory weaves a spellbinding tale of a young woman with the ability to see the future in an era when destiny was anything but clear.

Winter, 1553. Pursued by the Inquisition, Hannah Green, a fourteen-year-old Jewish girl, is forced to flee with her father from their home in Spain. But Ha
ebook, 512 pages
Published February 19th 2008 by Touchstone (first published February 4th 2003)
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Karen They can be read independently, however I found it more enjoyable to read the books in order.
Lisa Shardlow I have since found the answer to my own question. On Philippa Gregory's website, in the section specifically about this book, she states: "Whenever…moreI have since found the answer to my own question. On Philippa Gregory's website, in the section specifically about this book, she states: "Whenever people tell me their favourite of all my books, this is the one that is most often mentioned. I think people love the character of Hannah, who is invented but inspired by the existence of a real female 'Fool' who served Mary I. If you have a hardback edition you can see the royal picture which is thought to show her in a doorway in the endpapers. It is one of my favourite books and led on to The Virgin's Lover."

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Oct 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Philippa Gregory Fans, Historical Fiction Fans, Tudor History Buffs
Recommended to Annie by: Alaine Bucknall, Sheree McLeod
Gregory, the reigning Queen of historical fiction, weaves a tale that is as much an insight into the Tudor court as it is into religious history. The protagonist Hannah, is a secret Jew serving a Catholic Queen and befriending a Protestant Princess. What a catalyst for an electrifying plot!

Being that this story is based in history and immersed in fact, there are twists and turns that you will anticipate. However the addition of a completely fictional heroine adds a layer of intrigue and provide
I'm done with Philippa Gregory.

This is the 4th book of hers that I've experienced. I was hoping that, not being constrained by the limits brought by a historical figure, she could create a fuller character than the shallow cardboard cutouts of Anne Boleyn, Catherine Howard, Anne of Cleves, and Katherine of Aragon in her other novels. But no... The character of Hannah Green was by far the most confusing and maddeningly inconsistent character I've read outside of fanfic. This wasn't complexity, bu
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Auf Instagram teilen wir unsere Leidenschaft unter #makehistossexyagain. Macht mit!

Eine absolute solide, gut recherchierte Geschichte im tollen spannend verpackten Gregory-Stil. Die Geschichte hat einige Wendungen, die es einem nie langweilig werden lassen. Die Protagonistin ist mal anders als die bisherigen, sehr unroyal und unweiblich und eigensinnig. Ihre Entwicklung gefiel mir fantastisch. Man bekam ebenfalls einen guten Eindruck von der Glaubenskrise, die erneut durch "Bloody Mary" angefac
I was pretty excited about reading my first Philippa Gregory book. I mean, she has like a thousand books and they've been turned into movies and miniseries and who knows what else. She clearly knows her shit where historical research is concerned, particularly the Tudor period.

And yet, I only made it to page THREE before I noped my way out of this book. Here's a summary of those three pages:
- 14 year old girl.
- Grown ass married man sexually pursuing 14 year old girl.
- Seriously. He's encourag
Crystal Starr Light
Hannah Verde "Green" is a young Jewish girl who poses as a boy to apprentice to her father, a bookkeeper. But when Lord Robert Dudley realizes she has "The Sight", she becomes King Edward's Fool. Hannah The Fool gets to experience the King's death, Queen Mary's rise to the throne, and Princess Elizabeth's eternal scheming to get on the throne all from the front seat of the court. But the real question is: Will Hannah ever find Twoo Lurve?

The last Philippa Gregory book I read, The Other Boleyn Gi
Jan 06, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed this book tremendously, with the exception of the ending, which felt weak and rushed compared to the rest of the book. Excellent historical fiction. I'm buying all this author's books.
Dec 04, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dudleys picked on in school
Recommended to Mariel by: hood on my hair
Philippa Gregory writes royalty fanfic, pretty much. Sometimes she'll throw in a Mary Sue stand-in based on an actual figure from history (such as Mary Boleyn in The Other Boleyn Girl) and ground her story on some small fact she wanted to do a what-if on. That's okay, but it still feels like putting in your own new character into someone else's story (this time a real one) and adding importance to them that they didn't have. Just like fanfics.
The Queen's Fool hones in on fictional Spaniard Jewis
"And all they will remember of this queen is that she brought the country floods and famine and fire. She will be remember as England's curse when she was to have been our virgin queen, England's saviour."

That quote is exactly what I knew of Queen Mary Tudor, Elizabeth I's older sister and predecessor. The Queen's Fool is a factual and fictional retelling of Mary's evolution from the miserable child who saw her mother divorced and put aside by Henry VIII, to the woman who would become queen o
This was the first book I've read (more specifically, listened to) by Philippa Gregory. After seeing the enormous popularity of The Other Boleyn Girl, I had kind of wondered what it was that made this author so appealing.

Before reading this, I already knew that most of Gregory's books were historical fiction told from the perspective of women who lived or might have lived during medieval and early modern times. So, I wasn't surprised to find strong female characters who nonetheless live within
Drinking game! Every time Queen (Princess, here) Elizabeth I is referred to as a whore in The Queen's Fool, take a sip of wine. By the time you finish the book, your blood alcohol level will be infinity.


Aside from the misogyny party (everyone's invited!), the problem with this book (as opposed to The Other Boleyn Girl) is that the main character is an outsider with her own story. She's a secret Jew from Spain, whose mother was killed in the Inquisition. So you have this balance between the in
Sonja Arlow
I have been SO lazy writing this review, putting it off for days after finishing the audio version. This normally only happens when I am slightly underwhelmed by my reading experience.

As always, the audio narrator Bianca Amato gave a stellar performance and I enjoyed the fact that the book was written from the viewpoint of a non-royal, especially one that has an uncontrollable power of prophecy. I also really enjoyed learning about the lives of Jews during this time of persecution and the danger
Sophia Musgrave
Jul 25, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
SO I see some other reviews of this are whining that it is not historically accurate, and all I can say is so what? it is a piece of fiction, although it may be historically based at points, seriously if you want a real history book go read a text book!!! I think this was great book, the story about Hannah Green being claimed as a fool by the court is engaging, at times very troubling and at times very touching. Based upon the reign of Bloody Mary we get to explore several what ifs-- what if one ...more
Jul 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Desejava perder-me nos corredores dos castelos, conhecer personalidades fascinantes e cativantes, e, principalmente lançar-me nos meandros da História de uma forma que só Philippa Gregory consegue recriar. Depois de ler 5 livros da autora já sei com o que posso contar e estava ansiosa por ler este - embora soubesse que a personagem principal é fictícia, ao contrário, dos restantes livros.

Oliver e Hannah Verde “Green”, pai e filha naturais de Aragão, Espanha, são honestos e trabalhadores, esforça
Feb 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of historical fiction
An engaging heroine--if somewhat too contemporary in her attitudes for the 16th Century, IMO--narrates this unusual perspective on Tudor England which I enjoyed very much. Not an instant favorite, but definitely a diverting read that I don't regret spending time on. I'll have to read a few more titles by the author before I can say whether or not she's earned her title as queen of Elizabethan fiction.

One thing I found especially intriguing was her unusually sympathetic portrayal of Mary Tudor. M
Jul 26, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: modern-fiction
The Queen's Fool was stupid. Historically inaccurate and completely out of touch with the tone of the era. Some books - Michael Faber's The Crimson Petal and the White comes to mind, or Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange and Mister Norrell - can walk and talk like historical fiction, and still prove irresistably interesting to contemporary audiences. (Postmodernist historical fiction?) This one, however, fails miserably. I thought I was going to like it. I really, really didn't.
Trish at Between My Lines
2.5 stars

So far my least favourite book in this series.

I think because we get the view of someone outside of the Royal Family circle. Harrah is the Queen's Fool. Most of the time I liked her, and admired her independence. But at the same time, it grinded my gears that she was on everyone's side. Can you say people pleaser. Whoever she was with, that's whose side she was on.

And she wasn't doing it to be cunning, she was just very empathic. But it irked me.

That said it was interesting to see Mary'
Ashley Marsh
Jul 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, 2016
I'm so, so conflicted with this one. Anyone who knows me knows I CAN'T refuse Philippa Gregory. I go into each of her books with the solid KNOWLEDGE, not expectation, that I'm going to enjoy it. I have so many thoughts about this one. This is probably going to read more as a rant than as an actual review, but I'm still trying to sort out my thoughts.

Unlike the rest of the series, this is told from the point of view, not just of an outsider, but of an entirely fictitious character. Hannah's narr
Jen Burke
Jul 12, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dublin-book-club
I wanted to like this book. It's set during an interesting period of history. It features a Jewish heroine, Hannah, who must hide her faith. The overarching theme is about religious and personal freedom. But the writing is so awful (it reads like a trashy romance novel) I just couldn't like the book. Nor could I like the heroine. Being free isn't equivalent to being unprincipled. And Hannah "loves" everyone she meets; she ends up loyal to no one. Moreover, the characters are all over the place. ...more
Feb 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, 2011
Every time I pick up a Gregory novel, I want more. I love her Tudor series so much I went out and bought almost every Tudor book I could find (at Border's going-out-of-business sale). My obsession began when my best friend said, hey, you know that movie The Other Boleyn Girl, I just read the book and I know you are going to think I'm crazy because it's so smutty, but I loved it... you should try it too. Of course, I was hesitant at first, but she's my best friend, if I can't trust her reading re ...more
Susan O'Bryant
I rarely give a book a full 5 stars, but this one truly deserves the highest rating possible. I've never read a piece of historical fiction that brings the characters to life as much as this novel does. I love to learn new things, and this book prompted me to read more about that period in European history.

This was the best historical fiction novel I have ever read. Whenever I pick up a book of any genre of fiction, I'm always hoping that I will find a character (or characters) who will be inter
Jan 31, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, reviewed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Gregory truly captured an "underdog" in her novel depicting Hannah, the Queen's fool in the novel by the same title. Hannah, a Jewish exile is brought to court and although she is a "Fool", she becomes so much more. Strong, intelligent, and ambitious; Gregory shows that even "lesser" court members were at the top of their game.

The novel is very vivid to say the least (do you expect any less from Gregory?) and is an entertaining and easy read. How historically accurate is it, you ask? Well, let'
Maggie Anton
I used to enjoy Gregory's novels more, but now I've pretty much had it with English royalty in general and the Tudors in particular. While I appreciated her including a Jewish heroine in "The Queen's Fool," her inaccurate description of 16th-century Judaism was a real turn-off. As a Jewish historical novelist whose heroines are also Jewish, I expect other authors to do their research on this delicate subject. Good historical fiction can teach readers a great deal about history, particularly abou ...more
Megan Tiscareno
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
I've never been so torn on how to feel about main characters until I read this book. I was so utterly torn between disgust and love for both Queen Mary and Princess Elizabeth at times. It was an amazing book, really telling about the characters of people, mixed with of course, some factual historical information, and a really lovely story about a girl who comes of age and figures out what she desires.
Brittany B.
3.5 stars.

Judging this as a work of fiction and for its entertainment value, it is better than I expected. On the other hand, Gregory took liberties with her writing that were beyond ethical, in historical fiction.

To keep for me now, and I will write a review soon.
Jessie Frederick
Aug 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
I was really not expecting to like The Queen's Fool very much at all. Despite loving Philippa Gregory, the idea of a "psychic" fool, who is nothing more than a commoner, as the protagonist told me this story would probably be too far into the fantasy world and too far removed from the action of the Tudor court that I've come to love about this series to be enjoyable for me. But to my great surprise, I was wrong in my early predictions.

Hannah proved to be an interesting and dynamic character, and
Feb 13, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Philippa Gregory fans
Recommended to Iset by: No one

Let's begin by discussing the leading premise of the book - Hannah's Sight. The premise of a character with an uncontrollable power of prophecy is undoubtedly interesting, but it jars with the historical setting, so this would be best viewed as historical fantasy. There is a second issue, and that's the fact that Hannah's Sight basically serves no function or usefulness in the plot. Let's just think about this for a second. Hannah has no control over her episodes, and frequently she can't unders
Elisa (Bookish Expat)
I love historical fiction. And you can count on Philippa Gregory to create characters whose lives are interwoven with well-know historical events, which is the best part of historical fiction: looking at events we usually only know from history books, from the viewpoint of someone who lived through them, whose life was affected by them. Even if they are fictional characters, it's a powerful tool to make history feel more real and less clinical, less distant.
That said, there is something distinc
Särah Nour
May 29, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It’s no secret that Philippa Gregory novels are all the range these days, especially given the success of her novel The Other Boleyn Girl. I figured it was high time I gave Gregory a chance. Having lacked access to The Other Boleyn Girl, I chose instead to borrow a copy of The Queen’s Fool to satisfy my growing interest in historical fiction.

The synopsis on the back of the book was certainly promising. The protagonist is Hannah Green, a fourteen-year-old Jewish girl fleeing religious persecution
Alisi ☆ wants to read too many books ☆
Oh Lord, why did I read this? I hate it, really truly, hate it when authors invention a bunch of BS history to feed us. I've been on a Tudor history binge lately, but that honestly isn't why I read this. It was on sale, damn it. What could I do? xP

This follows Hannah, a Jew, who comes to England to flee from the Spanish Inquisition. Her mother wasn't so lucky. She was burned at the stake. She meets two random people in her shop one day, randomly blurts out something about an Angel, and suddenly
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2015 Reading Chal...: The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory 1 24 May 01, 2015 08:32PM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 15, 2015 04:36PM  
Loved The History 4 45 Oct 23, 2012 10:22PM  
Bible in Spanish 11 61 Dec 01, 2011 08:19PM  
  • The Thistle and the Rose (Tudor Saga, #8)
  • Between Two Queens (Secrets of the Tudor Court, #2)
  • The Uncrowned Queen (War of the Roses, #3)
  • The Queen's Bastard
  • A Dangerous Inheritance
  • The Queen's Rival (In the Court of Henry VIII, #3)
  • The Queen's Handmaiden
Philippa Gregory was an established historian and writer when she discovered her interest in the Tudor period and wrote the novel The Other Boleyn Girl, which was made into a TV drama and a major film. Published in 2009, the bestselling The White Queen, the story of Elizabeth Woodville, ushered in a new series involving The Cousins’ War (now known as The War of the Roses) and a new era for the acc ...more
More about Philippa Gregory...

Other Books in the Series

The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • The Lady of the Rivers (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #1)
  • The White Queen (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #2)
  • The Red Queen (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #3)
  • The Kingmaker's Daughter (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #4)
  • The White Princess (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #5)
  • The Constant Princess (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #6)
  • The King's Curse (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #7)
  • Three Sisters, Three Queens (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #8)
  • The Other Boleyn Girl (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #9)
  • The Boleyn Inheritance (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #10)

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“I have seen sights and travelled in countries you cannot imagine. I have been afraid and I have been in danger, and I have never for one moment thought that I would throw myself at at a man for his help.” 50 likes
“Because all books are forbidden when a country turns to terror. The scaffolds on the corners, the list of things you may not read. These things always go together.” 16 likes
More quotes…