This acclaimed best seller from popular historian Alison Weir is a fascinating look at the Tudor family dynasty and its most infamous ruler. The Six Wives of Henry VIII brings to life England’s oft-married monarch and the six wildly different but equally fascinating women who married him. Gripping from the first sentence to the last and loaded with fascinating details, Weir’s rich history is a perfect blend of scholarship and entertainment.
©1991 Alison Weir (P)2002 Recorded Books
I thought this book would be one that would last quite a while with no real suspense or drama. I thought that I could listen to it leisurely.
To my surprise it pulled me in and I zipped thorough this book.
I didn't know that much about Henry VIII, having evidently skipped history on my way through school.
But this book made that time in history stand out in brilliant color for me. I pitied, liked and hated these women and of course I felt how difficult their lives, all women's lives, at that time must have been.
This book made me think. I so pitied Lady Mary in the beginning and it took me quite a while to figure out as time went on she was the Bloody Mary I'd read of in Foxx's Book of Martyrs. I guess I have a bit more understanding of why she was who she was.
There is no bad language in this book, there is some discussion of sex, but handled gently and some violence. but it was a sexual and violent time of history.
This book also shows clearly how easily one's conscience can become totally blind to it's own faults, and justify almost any action. It seems to me Henry used the excuse of succession to have more and more of what he wanted, while getting rid of wives whichever way he could. I suppose it was just the way things were then, to value human life so little and be so willing to sacrifice other's lives to achieve selfish goals. Oh, wait, that sounds like policed happenings today...
Well, I've got to go and hug my husband and tell him thanks for being so nice to me.
Pretty close to the top. It's a great balance between narrative and informative history. It gives a great feel for the era.
The weird details about the personalities of the King's wives.
Probably the bit talking about young Henry's antics.
No, I need to pee/work/eat some time and thing is pushing twenty hours long.
The subject - the author - the narrator ... all come together for an absorbing "read."
Weir is uniquely adept at presenting meticulously researched facts in a way that reads like fiction, combining them with astute observations and sly humor. Having first listened to another Weir book on Henry VIII's children which was narrated by a woman, it took a bit of adjusting to hear the flat, somewhat dry reading of this book - but, once I grew accustomed to the voice and cadence, I was totally engrossed.
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.
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