This is one of the best books I have listened to (or read) in a very long time. I had a tough time getting into this book and found the narration to be monotonous at first. However, once I started to understand the connections and relationships between all of the characters, I couldn't stop listening! When I finished the book, I felt positively breathless and couldn't wait to recommend it to others. I have not been able to stop thinking about it since I finished it yesterday. The only reason that I rated this book at 4 stars is because it was a little difficult to get in to. I would have rated it 4.95 stars if it were possible!
I loved this book. I loved the statement that it made about human cruelty. I loved the narrator. I loved the length. I loved the characters. The only reason I can't give it the full 5 stars is because there was a little shameless suspense-building that almost reminded me of Dan Brown in the way the chapters always ended just when something huge was about to happen. Unlike Dan Brown, however, you almost always found out what was about to happen in the next chapter. I wish I could give it a 4.9!
This was entertaining most of the way through but there was a very definite turning point into absurdity about 2/3 of the way through. It happens about the time a certain name is discovered. I don't want to give anything away but just know that its all going to go quickly downhill after that point. I only gave it 2 stars because the ending is so ridiculous and absurd it made me feel a little dumber for having read it.
This book may be exactly what some people are looking for. However, it was not what I thought it would be. I rushed to purchase this after finishing Innocent Traitor, another book by this author. I thoroughly enjoyed that book because it was written like a story in first person. This is more like a textbook and just a little too "non-fiction" for me. I want to learn about history but not this much! After several years of listening to around 3-4 audiobooks each month, this is the first time I have EVER not finished one. I didn't even last 2 hours! I highly recommend Innocent Traitor though.
How did I not notice that this was an ABRIDGED version?!? I despise abridgements! This book was really good though and the result is that now I want the unabridged version. If I can't find it on audiobook I will buy it to read. A combination of this book and the Showtime drama "The Tudors" has gotten me terribly interested in the life of Henry VIII. I have never liked trashy romance novels partly because they just make me feel stupid but here is one I can feel good about since it is somewhat educational! Too bad it is the ABRIDGED version!
I can understand why so many people liked this book. Until I got to the very end of it, I would've rated it much higher. It did hold my interest and I was very curious the whole time about Anna's motivations. However, it was like the author wrote almost the whole book and then decided to end with the most absurd, over-the-top-melodramatic, unrealistic turn of events anyone could dream up. This, in itself, might pique the interest of some readers. Even the subplot had a terrible ending that was so ridiculous. I'm sure there are a lot of people out there in their mid-thirties who are still carrying around baggage from high school relationships. If you are one of those people, then this is the book for you! BTW, that was supposed to be sarcasm... To summarize, I don't feel that I gained anything from reading this book. In fact, I feel like I probably lost a few IQ points.
I downloaded this book b/c of all the high ratings and, while it held my interest fairly well, the narration was TERRIBLE and I thought the story was predictable and lame. The main character came across to me as emotionless and I really didn't care what bad stuff happened to her. I was worried that this book might be cheesy b/c it was published by Harlequin and now I will not download anything else they have published. I do not understand why so many people liked this book. I found it bearable at best but everyone else seems to love it so it might be worth a try if you're trying to decide on a book...
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