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  • The Favored Queen: A Novel of Henry VIII's Third Wife

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Carolly Erickson
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (50)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (43)

    From the New York Times best-selling author of The Last Wife of Henry VIII comes a powerful and moving novel about Jane Seymour, third wife of Henry VIII, who married him only days after the execution of Anne Boleyn and ultimately lost her own life in giving him the son he badly needed to guarantee the Tudor succession.

    Amazon Customer says: "More Fiction than History"
    "More Fiction than History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The content became more and more outlandish. I have read several of Carolly Erickson's biographies (Mistress Anne, Great Harry, The first Elizabeth, and Bloody Mary) and I had thought this was a biography of Jane Seymour. Instead it was a wild tale with the "popular" names of the times and situations but pure fiction.

    The speaker did an admirable job with the material given. The mistake was mine in not realizing what type of book this was or in reading the reviews before I bought it.


    What was most disappointing about Carolly Erickson’s story?

    The point where I had finally had enough was when Anne Boleyn came down with the sweating sickness. Instead of the historical tale or even a vaguely possible tale, Anne Boleyn was locked in the castle with Katherine of Aragon and her ladies having just been admitted to the locked down castle after Henry VIII left her in a village when he had learned the sweating sickness had broken out. Anne beat on the castle door to be let in and once inside Jane Seymour discovers Anne has the sweating sickness after inspecting Anne's armpits. They contemplate tossing her out a window into the moat (with Anne struggling and screaming to be let go) when Katherine rescues Anne at the last minute and has her placed in a linen closet to recover. Katherine then states that she will nurse her back to health and bring her food if no one else was willing.

    Frankly I am tempted to listen to the rest of it just to see how idiotic it can become. Prior to the sweating sickness incident they had Anne pulling down her top in France in competition with her sister Mary to see who could get men to sleep with them faster.


    Have you listened to any of Kate Reading’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have never listened to any of Kate Reading's other performances before that I am aware of but she was very pleasant to listen to and made good use of voice and accents for the different characters.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I have studied Tudor history for years and the only redeeming quality this book has is total unpredictability. It seems to hit the highest points in history - Henry VIII is king and he has a first wife named Katheryn and he is interested in Anne Boleyn who is related to the Duke of Norfolk. It also had the name of the gentleman correct who at one point in time was considered a potential prospect for Jane Seymour (plus the other characters did have recognizable names and were in approximately the relationships they should have been). However, other than that it is a wild ride of inaccuracy and speculation filled with intimate details of a lurid type nature (so far though of the PG13 brand when I stopped reading).


    Any additional comments?

    I am really shocked that the author who wrote the biographies I have read regarding Tudor times (which seemed to match well with other documentation) could have written a book that has little resemblance to the actual history (or at least currently considered history). It most closely resembles a 99 cent throw away novel written by someone with only the basic knowledge of Tutor history and a vivid puerile imagination.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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