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Isabella Audiobook

Isabella: The She-Wolf of France

Here is the first full-length biography of a much maligned but astonishingly colourful Queen of England. In Newgate Street, in the city of London, stand the meagre ruins of Christ Church. On the same site once stood a royal mausoleum set to rival Westminster Abbey in the 14th century. Among the many crowned heads buried there was Isabella of France, Edward II's queen - one of the most notorious femme fatales in history. But how did she acquire her evil reputation? And is it justified?
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Publisher's Summary

Here is the first full-length biography of a much maligned but astonishingly colourful Queen of England.

In Newgate Street, in the city of London, stand the meagre ruins of Christ Church. On the same site once stood a royal mausoleum set to rival Westminster Abbey in the 14th century. Among the many crowned heads buried there was Isabella of France, Edward II's queen - one of the most notorious femme fatales in history. But how did she acquire her evil reputation? And is it justified? Alison Weir's engrossing biography sets out to put the record straight.

©2005 Alison Weir; (P) W F Howes Ltd

What the Critics Say

"Pierces the veil of history with scholarly precision....A serious rendering of a sensational life." (Irish Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (239 )
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4.1 (132 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mary Elizabeth Reynolds SUMMERVILLE, SC, United States 09-01-12
    Mary Elizabeth Reynolds SUMMERVILLE, SC, United States 09-01-12 Member Since 2013

    author of Lowcountry Legend's series

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "awesome history"

    considering the time period, this is a wonderful history of the middle ages. I especially enjoyed the little details about the castles, clothing and so on. It also does a good job with a woman of dubious character, the author does a pretty good job with her though. Isabella was no saint and she wasn't made out to be such, but I do believe she makes a great case for how important this one woman was to the history of England and Europe. The seeds of the Hundred Years War and the War of the Roses began with her and good ole' Mortimer. I'm pretty certain though that Edward the Second didn't end up in a monastic order. He didn't die per Lancastrian propaganda BUT I can't picture him in hermit garb either. Bottom line, this woman survived them all........

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Lou Cave Creek, AZ USA 10-09-09
    Linda Lou Cave Creek, AZ USA 10-09-09 Member Since 2014

    OCD over books, listening to 1 a day; ANY genre, fact & fiction. Influenced by Audible reviewers so I keep mine unbiased - FRONT to BLACK!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
    "Book AND Price Should Be Abridged"

    I got this book for the Audible $7.95 membership fee. If I'd paid $40, I would be the "The She-Wolf of America! Weir is out of her league with this ambitious project, better left to writers like Antonia Fraser. Weir ruins the book by summing up the 21 hour foray in the first 30 minutes. The book could have been a mere 4 hours if the writer didn't wast so much time on minutiae. For example, spend a lot of time on Isabella's birth date, going from 1291 to 1298, then back again, like the reader will check her facts at the Hall of Records. She quotes whole sermons, speeches, letters, TOMBSTONES, in ad nauseum. She claims that Isabella was a "debauched Jesebel", yet never tells what the queen did to deserve these labels. We get indepth descriptions of rooms in every palace and estate in Christendom in mind-numbing detail but we never get a real picture of what Isabelle looked like, other than "beautiful". No hair color, height, weight, etc. Weir admits that very little is known about the French princess' life prior to coming to England so she compensates by devoting almost 10 hours on her husband's homosexual liaisons. Isabella may deserve a place in history for driving her husband from the throne but hardly compares to Queens Elizabeth I and Victoria. If you really want to learn of Isabella's exploits, check out "The Lives of the Kings and Queens of England" by Antonia Fraser for a lot less money, with a big bonus of the bios of every English monarch from William The Conqueror to Queen Elizabeth II. Or just read Isabella's bio at Wikipedia.org which is what I was forced to do after this confusing hodgepodge. "She-Wolf" Not so much. Isabella was no Elizabeth Bathory. Unless you want to stick a pencil in your neck, spend your money on a good meal with friends!

    20 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deedie Laura 05-31-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "dry and tedious"

    I bought 3 books by this author. this one was a dry reading of history not a novel with historical base. couldn't get past the first have of part one. so far one of the other books are what i expected but this one was a disappointment.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    muffie5450 05-09-15
    muffie5450 05-09-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An Interesting History Lesson"

    I began this book with the expectation that it would be somewhat dry but chose it anyway because this was an area of history in England heretofore unknown by me and I was ready for the education. While Isobella's story is certainly not one to keep the reader on the edge of one's seat, it is filled with a wealth of historical detail that historyphiles like me go "ga-ga" over. What appeared texious for some of the other readers was like literary cotten candy for me. Load me down with shat people wear, and eat, and fight about, and I'm happy. What I didn't care for in the book was I often lost track of where I was in the Queen's life because of all the attention to date details. Just simply saying 'Isobella was 23 when this occurred' would have been so much easier on me than getting all these dates, then having to do the mathmatical atheletics to figure out where I was in her lifetime. But that was my own preference, someone else might not think another thing about it. Overall, I enjoyed the book. Isobella has definately gotten a bad rap over the centuries for what she did and didn't do. Score another one for the misogynistic historians in our midst!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mike 02-28-15
    mike 02-28-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
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    "Great Audiobook"

    I was familiar with the story of Isabella but after listening to this sudiobook I look at her with a whole new light.
    i

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    bobbi boyd springdale 02-15-15
    bobbi boyd springdale 02-15-15
    ratings
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    4
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    Performance
    Story
    "Book is more of References for Dates than a story"
    Would you try another book from Alison Weir and/or Lisette Lecat?

    I have read other books by Alison Weir however this one is more a list of dates rather than a story about the Queen of England.


    Has Isabella turned you off from other books in this genre?

    no


    Which character – as performed by Lisette Lecat – was your favorite?

    No characters were performed. Just a list of dates with what has been documented or conjecture from other authors.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Isabella?

    no scenes


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clayton Bosler Redondo Beach CA USA 09-29-13
    Clayton Bosler Redondo Beach CA USA 09-29-13 Listener Since 2009

    Clay

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fascinating piece of history!"
    Any additional comments?

    This is a very good book, and is read brilliantly by Ms Lecat. I was hoping for a book as good as Katherine, and this one didn't quite make that mark, primarily because Ms Weir spent a bit too much time on some of the more mundane descriptions than I felt was warranted. Nonetheless, she certainly wrote a compelling book that provides ample argument for revisiting the harsh historical judgment so often associated with Isabella. Enjoy diving into this stormy period of English history!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    IAN GLENHUNTLY, Australia 02-11-13
    IAN GLENHUNTLY, Australia 02-11-13
    ratings
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    7
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    Story
    "Wonderful story of a great Leader"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The much maligned Isabella is portrayed as a strong and loving Leader


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Isabella


    What does Lisette Lecat bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Excellent performance


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    not at this time

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy 12-11-12
    Nancy 12-11-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Alison at her best"
    Would you listen to Isabella again? Why?

    Yes. I would listen again because there was way too much information to absorb in one hearing. Lisette Lecat did an excellent job as narrator and brought the book to life.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The factual history.


    Any additional comments?

    Alison Weir is really good at the detective work needed for this kind of book. She gives you detailed facts and then draws conclusions to come up with her take on history's mysteries. I learn a lot from her books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danuta 11-24-12
    Danuta 11-24-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Reads like a textbook"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Unless my friend was a history buff, I would not recommend this book. It is very dry, full of historical facts....basically a history text. Very unlike her books "The Innocent Traitor" and " The Lady Elizabeth" where she blends the historical facts with the characters and makes history interesting.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Alison Weir? Why or why not?

    Yes, I would read more of her books, because I enjoyed the first two I purchased.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • S
    Heathfield, United Kingdom
    3/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Meticulous detail, but a bit boring"

    Having listened to and really enjoyed Lancaster and York by Alison Weir, I very much looked forward to listening to Isabella, She-Wolf of France. This book is meticulous in its level of detail, but unfortunately in my opinion this made it rather dry and boring at times. That said, I finished it as I am very interested in learning more about this historical period. I would recommend the book in terms of increasing my knowledge - but not as a pleasurable read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Teresa Cooper
    1/19/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Was it the kings fault or Isabella's?"

    Isabella of France is shown as the victim, the perpetrator and the third wheel on a racing bike. AW shows the decisions Isabelle was forced to make from when she first becomes a wife until she dies. I will definitely read again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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