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Three Sisters, Three Queens (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #8)
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October 2016: Historical Fiction > Three Sisters Three Queens - 4 stars

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message 1: by Amy (new) - rated it 4 stars

Amy | 8512 comments I enjoyed it very much! Although I admit this is the third Philippa Greggory Plantagenet-Tudor book I've read within the last 6 months. That a lot of Tudor! One interesting thing about this one, is that it is written from the point of view of Queen Margaret, Dowager Queen of Scotland, sister to Henry the 8th. It is the story we have heard close to 10 times, from the point of view of Katherine of Aragon, from Mary Boleyn, Anne Boleyn, from Queen Mary, from Margaret de la Pole, from Elizabeth Boleyn, and a few others. Only this time, the events come through the lens of Margaret, yet another woman clamoring for power, amidst fickle ambitious men who use and betray her. One interesting thing about this lens, is that Margaret is vulnerable, but not necessarily likable. And yet, we root for her anyway. We cry for her, feel her vulnerability, her hopes and dreams. We are privy to her inner thoughts, and they are not necessarily pretty. She is jealous, and ambitious, and a bit narcissistic. The rivalry with her sisters, feels like a dynamic and wound she was part of creating. Makes one wonder, what might have happened, if the sisters could have truly allied with one another, if their situations could have had any greater outcome. The question of marrying for love versus marrying for power, is a long standing theme in both the Greggory series and World History, and no one explores this like Philippa. Our hearts cry similarly for Katherine of Aragon, who also had a entitled, strong, ambitious, dignified manner. She was born to be Queen. However, Katherine is somehow portrayed as kinder than Margaret. More loving, more empathic somehow, or reflective of her struggle. She feels more of an agent of God and history, than Margaret does. Margaret comes off more as a reluctant hero, painfully aware of her second best. In fact, her awareness of also being "just a woman" or a mother, not just a mother of a King, were to me, the loveliest, most tenderly complicated parts of the book. I did feel, that while it was long, I was left wondering about the aftermath. I had remembered that James becomes promised both to the sisters Mary and Elizabeth, but I believe neither ultimately match takes place. And what of Lady Margaret Douglas, the Scottish King's half-sister, I remember her vaguely in Boleyn rooms, but now cannot quite place her allegiance or ultimate outcome. Nor the outcome of King's Henry's children of Princess/Queen Mary and Charles Brandon. I believe Charles is ultimately killed in the suspicious rampage that comes later in history of Henry the 8th's descent. But their children, Tudor descendants, what of them? I feel a bit both Greggory-d out, and yet I am also curious and I want to know. The Tudors remain fascinating to me, and it feels that Phillippa spins an amazing tale for us, from multiple points of view, with characters that come alive. The plot is always as fast paced, and side changing, and politically and personally charged, as any current situation, dressed in gowns, tapestries, jewels, and court masques and jousts and riding parties. It is always a thrill to see our history come alive. Again and as always, Nice Job, PG!

Now reading the Witches Market, which is just super fun. Its not eloquent writing, or yet a not to be missed, but yet I am captivated, engrossed, intrigued, and at 10%, loving every second. I have always wanted to visit the Canary Islands, and this is just a little taste.

Excited to read this month, A Gentleman In Moscow, Today Will be Different, The Children Act, The Storm Sister, and Hot Milk is also on its way to me in the library…..


message 2: by Anita (new)

Anita Pomerantz | 6432 comments I can't believe I haven't read a Phillipa Gregory book yet. I really feel like I would like them as I do enjoy reading about royalty. Your review makes it sound like she does do a great job.


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