The Boleyn Inheritance is a novel drawn tight as a lute string about a court ruled by the gallows and three women whose positions brought them wealth, admiration, and power - as well as deceit, betrayal, and terror. Once again, Philippa Gregory has brought a vanished world to life: the whisper of a silk skirt on a stone stair, the yellow glow of candlelight illuminating a hastily written note, the murmurs of the crowd gathering on Tower Green below the newly built scaffold. In The Boleyn Inheritance, Gregory is at her intelligent and suspenseful best.
©2006 Philippa Gregory Limited. All rights reserved; (P)2006 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.
"Gregory's accounts of events are accurate enough to be persuasive, her characterizations modern enough to be convincing. Rich in intrigue and irony, this is a tale where readers will already know who was divorced, beheaded, or survived, but will savor Gregory's sharp staging of how and why." (Publishers Weekly)
By far, this was one of my favorite audio books. The story was read by three different readers, and all three of them, had very distincive voices. This made it very easy to follow the story, and made it feel more like an audio play, than a book. The only drawback to this book was that it was far too short. I didn't want it to end.
This was a wonderful audiobook. The three narrators brought the characters to life in a way that reading the book could never accomplish. Excellent in every way.
The Boleyn Inheritance is narrated by three women living with the consequences of Anne Boleyn's rise and fall. Henry VIII's fourth and fifth wives and Anne's sister in law each narrate the increasing paranoia and instability of the court as Henry ages and ultimately dies. The readers are each distinct and well suited for their various roles. The book fleshes out the historical facts with compelling characters who may or may not be anything like their real inspirations, but are believable nonetheless.
Any quarrels I have with the ending coming a bit too fast may be due to the fact that this presentation IS abridged: a fact I had not realized before buying it. Don't be surprised, like I was. The audio book is still worthwhile, but be aware that this is much shorter than its predecessor, The Other Boleyn Girl.
It's a well told tale, and having it read to me makes the experience feel like having poisonous gossip dripped into my ear, just as the courtiers of the Tudor Court must have felt. An enjoyable take on a fascinating historical period, and a worthy sequel to The Other Boleyn Girl.
I highly enjoyed the three person narrative. It wasn't confusing and it gave different POVs on the same situation, which was really interesting.
I really felt for Anne of Cleves. Her home life was a shambles and she wanted out. But unfortunately she went from one mad house to another. I don't think it was fair of Henry to call her stupid and ugly. She's the true voice in the novel. I was really impressed with her decision to leave without a fight, and in doing so ended up with more than she would have elsewhere. Her decision to not go to court often saved her life. Stupid she was not.
Katherine Howard. My, my, my. She would be sweet if she wasn't so outwardly stupid, and 85% inwardly stupid. Though she could tell the truth about Henry, and kept it to herself, she was just...boring a bit to me. I think Gregory wanted to portray her as not as stupid as everyone says, but even the glimpses of intelligence were short lived by her pushing them out for shiny things.
Jane Parker, Boleyn, Rochford; Lady Rochford. I didn't like her in The Other Boleyn Girl at all. I found her nosy, simple and annoying. In this not so much. Most of the book she seemed sincere about being sorry for giving testimony against Anne and George Boleyn. But in her memories she stills holds on to the idea of them being lovers in a slight way. It wasn't until the end of the book when she truly showed her colours. No matter how much she may delude herself into think she's an OK person in the end she's not. She truly is a liar, schemer, malicious, evil person. I should mention she's also selfish. I truly think she has a touch of madness, but only because she brought it on herself.
This is a really good book.
The three women that read this draw you into their lives so much that you can almost feel what they are feeling. Philippa gives us another winner. I can see this working better as an audiobook then a book.
This was my first Philippa Gregory book and I thought it was very good. It brought historical events together with some great character development. I have done a little bit of study on Henry VIII and it was great to see such an in-depth and believable focus on his 4th and 5th wives as they are so often ignored. Very interesting characters and approach... I was pleasantly surprised.
I have high praise for this story and the 3 narrators, but was disappointed to discover that it had been abridged when I thought I had purchased unabridged. The rating would be 5 stars for unabridged.
This book explores the relationship between Henry, his 4th and 5th wives and Jane Boleyn. I have read all Philippa Gregory's history novels and this one is my favorite. The narration in the audio book was also excellent.
What great choices for narration! Three different voices from three different points of view: Hurrah for Ruthie Henshall - the voice of the young exuberant Katherine. The story swept you up, kept you in, and didn't let go until the last tear was shed!
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