While this novel isn't necessarily convincing either, it was entertaining. Anne Boleyn did indeed give birth to a daughter (the future Elizabeth I), but also a twin prince, Edward. Later, she gives birth to another prince, Henry. As we'd expect, these sons solidify her marriage to Henry VIII, and there is no prospect of beheading. In fact, Anne outlives her royal husband, becoming Queen Regent and guardian of her young son, the future King of England, until he's of age to rule.
What follows is a series of relationships between Anne and other English figures we know very well from the time period. Of course, we meet Jane Seymour, Mary Tudor, Catherine Howard, Catherine Parr, and many others. The ways in which they interact with Anne are not exactly what you'd expect, and further, the ways in which she treats them also seem rather out of character from the Anne Boleyn we know from history books. BUT, this ISN'T a history book, of course, so flexibility in characters and personalities is allowed - even if a little strange to read about.
I'll say that I liked the way this author wove the story. She did some clever things with marriages, friendships, and even executions. All of this is done in a way that still leads to the same English history we know from the time Elizabeth I takes the throne, which I thought was a clever way to wrap the story up. This isn't necessarily a "changing the course of history" kind of story - just an altering of the events between 1533 and 1555.
I give this author a lot of credit for her courage to take on not only a controversial figure in English history (not to mention one with scores of die-hard fans), but also to navigate the difficult path of rewriting a well-known period of history. I think she does it in a very interesting, very clever way. Despite having a few grievances with authenticity factors (certain phrases that were out of place, misspellings of historical names, etc.), I enjoyed this novel and would recommend it!
During the book tour (which lasts until this Friday), a paperback copy of "The Most Happy" is up for grabs! Enter the giveaway via this link. Giveaway rules are listed below:
- Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on October 6th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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- Only one entry per household.
- All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
- Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.
Thanks for stopping by to read my review of Helen R. Davis's novel. Follow along the rest of her tour by visiting her next stop tomorrow at http://faerytalesarereal.blogspot.com.
Happy Reading, Tudor Enthusiasts!