Read from February 28 to March 15, 2013
Audiobook read by Simon Prebble. This was really less about the women in their own right (what I was hoping for) and more about the general history of Henry VIII's marriages. Still in all, it was a fun listen and, even with as much as I thought I knew about these women, I learned some new tidbits--with the exception of Anne Boleyn and the only thing I learned about her is that Weir did not like her AT ALL.
Recent college grad who studied creative writing... now I bum 'round listening to other's works. Not a bad life :)
Easy. Factual. Deep.
It was very fascinating to learn so much about Henry's first queen. All of the queens are well researched. Weir leaves no stone unturned.
Prebble is a smart performer. He is very dry in a way that makes the book easy to follow. This book is written in a historical/academic way. His style doesn't subtract from its nature.
Audiobooks have literally changed my life. I now actually ENJOY doing mindless chores because they give me plenty of listening time!
I became very keen to learn all about the Tudors after reading Hilary Mantel's excellent Wolf Hall, followed by Bring Up the Bodies not long after. At that time I had very little notion about British History, and none at all about Henry VIII and his time, other than the fact he was an oft-married tyrant who had a couple of his wives beheaded. This book was just what I needed to fill some of the biggest gaps in my understanding of a) the reasons why H8 married so often b) who his wives were, with their backgrounds and personal stories and c) why he killed off two of his wives and divorced two more. I also learned in greater detail about d) how and why the break from Rome and the pope occurred, and why there were so many reversals back and forth from Catholic to Protestant beliefs, resulting in the deaths of uncounted masses of people for heresies which were determined according to ever-changing priorities and whims of the great monarch.
I felt I got quite a thorough overview of each of Henry's six wives, and also that Alison Weir seemed to greatly dislike Anne Boleyn, who came across as quite an unlikeable woman, though I gather this is a widely agreed upon opinion. Catherine of Aragon, his first wife, predictably enough, came across as a saint. Ann of Cleves and Catherine Parr, as the two clever ones who survived marriage to a vile brute. And of course, plenty of information about the monarch himself and his time.
Recommended for those who like me have an interest in literature about that period with little background on the topic, as I imagine a lot of the material is familiar to those who have a better grasp on English history.
Love audiobooks. Mystery and suspense novels are the ones I enjoy the most.
This book was fun to listen to. It only took me 3 days because I wanted to learn what had happened to each of the wives. I knew some of the stuff but learned so much more from this book. I recommended this book if you are into English history.
This did not feel like 22 hours at all. In fact, I was a little sad when I finished. I was always fascinated with the Tudor era so this book feels like candy. It is almost too indulgent-- I gobbled it so fast.
birds and more birds
audiobooks almost always work better for me, though this would be a great companion to the written version (I often have both)
I have been listening to many audio books about Henry the VIII lately, my favorite is the Autobiography of Henry the VIII, this book tells a very different story from the view point of his wives and those who knew them, this book is a great companion to the above mentioned book.
Alison Weir really does her homework.
great narration and story, this author is exceptional.
Excellent. this is not a Historical fiction but more of a telling of the lives of Henry's various wives. the narrator though tells it in such away it is like reading a novel and not listening to a history lecture. It keeps you enthralled even if you know the various tales of each wives, It gives details and at the same time leaves you wanting to learn more.
Love to read, and Audible has made the two-hour daily commute enjoyable!
This book tells much about Henry VIII, his six wives and their times. If you've just high-level heard about Henry VIII and how he had many wives and the separation from the Roman Catholic Church, this book will give you great background. It also illustrates what life was like in and out of court.
For me it was interesting to see the role of religion and how Henry and his advisors used religion and heresy as a means to the goal of having male heirs.
Wife, Mother, Daughter, Believer, Bibliophile, Dreamer
Yes, I have listened to it twice. I'm utterly fascinated with Tudor history.
Anne Boleyn is probably the character that I was most drawn too. I find her incredibly misguided and misunderstood.
Yes, on par with his other works.
If you love European history and drama, you will love this story. No one did it big in such a way as the Tudors and Weir does a great job illustrating that.
This is a very good history of the wives of Henry. I was a little concerned in the beginning because it seemed to focus so much on Catherine of Aragon, but it makes sense as the story continues. Catherine was such a big part of Henry's life and really set the standard on how he moved forward with his other wives, how could the author not give her more time. I really appreciate the fact that the author actually takes the time to mention where the information is coming from and, when appropriate, warns the listener if it is from a dubious source or not. Not much comes from those dubious sources, but when that information is included, so is the warning!
I really enjoyed the say Simon Prebble presented this book. He does not change tones much but is able to convey the story in a strong, proud way without judgment in his voice.
I would have loved to have been able to just sit around all day and listen to this book. However, I have 3 children and a fulltime job so THAT was not happening! However the fact is I completely enjoyed my driving time (1.5 hours round trip daily)!