Thursday, August 4, 2011

Before the Blog #5

   Before the Blog is a new meme hosted by YA Litwit. The idea here is that we have all been reading much longer than we have been blogging and have many books in our reading past that are worthy of blogging about. This is a way to 'rediscover' these gems by answering a few basic questions. For details check out the YA Litwit blog.

This week I am choosing to remember...

'The Last Wife of Henry VIII' by Carolly Erickson

Why did you choose this book? I chose to blog this book because I saw that Carolly Erickson has a new book coming out. I remembered the name and remembered I had enjoyed the book. 

When did you read this book? November 2006

Who would you recommend this book to? Readers who have enjoyed other books by Carolly Erickson and readers of historical fiction. Anyone who enjoys fiction based on the lives of royalty.

   Here is the synopsis from Goodreads. You can read member comments here.

Courageous, attractive, romantic, intelligent, Catherine Parr became the sixth wife of Henry VIII. Her story, as Carolly Erickson re-creates it, is page-turning drama: from the splendors of the Field of the Cloth of Gold to the gory last years of the outsize King Henry, when heads rolled and England trembled, Catherine bestrode her destiny and survived to marry her true love.

Catherine Parr attracted the king's lust and, though much in love with the handsome Thomas Seymour, was thrown into the intrigue-filled snake pit of the royal court. While victims of the king's wrath suffered torture and execution, Catherine persevered until, at last, she came within the orbit of the royal fury. King Henry toyed with her, first ordering her arrested, then granting her clemency. She managed to evade execution, but she knew that the king had his wandering eye fixed on wife number seven.

   My memory is that I originally chose to read this book because it was my kind of book. An attractive cover, historical fiction based on royalty, and a title that drew me in! 

   I rated this book 5 Stars. Other Goodreads members have combined to give it a 3.58 star-rating. Here is the review I posted shortly after I read the book.

I read this one in practically one sitting...with breaks for laundry, etc. I am a fan of historical FICTION, and particularly drawn to this era (1500's). I can't say if the book was historically accurate, but it has made me want to learn more about the royal families of England to find out how accurate it is. A good story showing many facets to the main characters, both negative and positive. This book expanded my view of King Henry the VIII, making him a more 'human' character than I'd previously thought. Before now, I never knew how many wives he'd had, let alone their names. I am eager to read more of Carolly Erickson's fiction, as well as more about the central characters of this book!

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