Two women competing for a man's heart....
Two queens fighting to the death for dominance...
Here is the untold story of Mary Queen of Scots, in which New York Times best-selling author Philippa Gregory presents a new and unique view of one of history's most intriguing, romantic, and maddening heroines. Biographers often neglect the captive years of Mary Queen of Scots, who trusted Queen Elizabeth's promise of sanctuary when she fled from rebels in Scotland and then found herself imprisoned as the "guest" of George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury and his indomitable wife, Bess of Hardwick.
The newly married couple welcome the doomed queen into their home, certain that serving as her hosts and jailors will bring them an advantage in the cutthroat world of the Elizabethan court. To their horror, they find that the task will bankrupt them, and as their home becomes the epicenter of intrigue and rebellion against Elizabeth, their loyalty to each other and to their sovereign comes into question. If Mary succeeded in seducing the Earl, or if the great spy master William Cecil linked them to the growing conspiracy to free Mary from her illegal imprisonment, they will all face the headsman.
Heralded as "the queen of royal fiction" by USA Today, Philippa Gregory uses new research and her passion for historical accuracy to place a well-known heroine in a completely new story full of suspense, passion, and political intrigue. The Other Queen is the result of her determination to present a story worthy of this extraordinary heroine.
©2008 Phillipa Gregory (P)2011 Simon & Schuster
"Mary's hell-bent assuredness combines deliciously with brisk chapters and rich historical detail. Indulge." (People)
"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one." - Jojen Reed. #ADanceWithDragons
I am a huge Phillipa Gregory fan but sadly this particular title did not live up to the high expectation I had. There were three narrators and of the three I truly only enjoyed one of the three narrators whilst the story, though interesting just lacked something for me.
The Other Queen follows the life of Mary, Queen of Scots during her imprisonment leading up to her death. As much as Mary's storyline is a real focal point, a rather fascinating storyline also includes Bess and her husband George Talbot. The three weaves a rather interesting relationship especially when you add Queen Elizabeth as well as William Cecil.
It's mostly a typical Phillipa Gregory type novel with the intrigue, love and treachery. You find yourself both disliking and liking all of the main characters at one point or another whilst seriously disliking both Queen Elizabeth and William Cecil. Cecil's character was definitely not spared during this conversation and as for the main characters they all seem to have at least one fundamental fault that makes them particularly difficult to like completely.
The narration though was what killed it for me. I found Ron Keith (the voice of George Talbot) so completely infuriating that I honestly wanted to just skip through his sections completely. He truly sounded like a whimpering school boy to me throughout the whole entire book. The voice of Mary was done relatively well while the voice of Bess had it moments for me.... and no all these moments were of a positive nature.
Overall the book is able to serve up what you have mostly come to expect from Phillipa Gregory. But as a whole it seems to be lacking a little bit in terms of the storyline whilst the narration for me just made it all the worse in my vantage point. It's an 'OK' listen for me, but nothing to write home about.
I compare this book to The Red Queen. Both books contain characters that can be abrasive and borderline annoying. Its enjoyable to expand ones imagination beyond the historical characters whom we admire.
I have really enjoyed all of Philippa Gregory's books in the Tudor series and leading up to this book but this one was disappointing from the beginning. I had a hard time figuring out who was who and getting back into the storyline with this book.
One of the narrators, I believe the one for Mary, was ok, but the male narrator was obnoxious to the point of having to turn the book off!
I couldn't even finish the book so I couldn't tell you.
history, entertaining and enjoyable
This is a great example where a history lesson can be entertaining and enjoyable
The various characters are always well developed and true to themselves in Philippa Gregory's novels. This time; however, the characters repeat themselves and their thoughts over and over and over. It moved much slower than her other books in this series.
I still enjoyed the book from the historical standpoint, and she definitely got across what the politics and lives of the people of England were during this period. It also illustrates how society had to deal with changing times. I enjoyed Bess's "self made woman" approach to life. She, too, was an example of how society was in transition from royal and noble rule to people rising in status due to cleverness and hard work.
Bress remains my favorite and the character I was rooting for, but her husband was soooo noble and lost in his love and concern as well as caught up in the change of status for the nobles that my heart felt for him as well.
I will use this book to reinforce what life was like in England during this time frame with my fifth grade class. It is so difficult for them to understand just how trapped women of that time were as well as all the political plots which can be applied to politics just about anywhere and any time.
Philippa Gregory is a master at making history interesting. I am basically a fan of mysteries and detective novels. She fits this genre as well as historical fiction.
I have been listening through the Tudor Series after having listened through the Cousin's War series and found this book full of information re Mary Queen of Scots which is never discussed. I also found the fact that Elizabeth 1 was highly influenced by her advisor Cecil. Who knew that it was he who truly ruled the country.
I love love love Audiobooks, and I hate to be critical of someone who can't defend himself. I found Mr. Keith 's performance too over the top. I felt like he was a dying man gasping for breath. His reading was forced and unnatural. The ladies did a wonderful job and the story was excellent, but listening to George's chapters was painstaking.
On the positive side,
I love love Love Philippa Gregory!! After completing the Cousins war series, I was enthralled with her interpretations, and I had to go on. The Tudor series did not disappoint. I'm deeply saddened that Gregory can't continue to walk me through Elizabeth's Reign.
I have now read all of Philippa Gregory's "Tudor" Series and loved, loved them all!! Each book gives great insight into each character and the time period. Philippa Gregory is an outstanding writer!!! The narration was great and puts you in the time period as you listen. Narrators didn't lose my attention!! Great Book!!
Best part was the narration. The narrators were incredibly realistic.
In some sections the story line was redendant and it was very slow.
Yes. I have read and/or listened several of her works.
Since ther story is told from the perspective of three historical figures, each brought the personalities, and their significant differences to life. THey did an excellent job.
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