Everything depended on the answer, especially the destiny of Queen Katharine herself.
In this second novel of the series, Jean Plaidy has brilliantly written the bittersweet true story of young King Henry and his dear Kate, who wanted only to please her beloved husband but seemed thwarted at every turn.
©1990 Eleanor Hibbert; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio
This is the second book in the trilogy about Katherine of Aragon, written by Jean Plaidy. This book tells the lesser known part of her life, the part before Anne Boleyn enters. The book starts out full of hope, as Katherine quickly becomes pregnant and has children, but it then devolves into fear and internal chaos. Katherine looks to be secure and comfortable in her role, but is fearing the worst, that none of her children, but one lives, and that a girl. But despite all of that she does manage to give England a great victory over Scotland, something Henry does resent. You do begin to feel the fear Katherine does at her continual miscarriages and still births. You begin to worry for her as Henry looks elswhere for comfort and women. Jean Plaidy is a masterful novelist and does an excellent job showing you the inner workings of a young Henry VIII's court.
The narrator does the book justice, but like in her last one, her Spanish and other accents leave a lot to be desired. I know they're not always easy to do, but I think the narrator could have tried a little harder, or maybe they could have found someone who was capable of doing the accents along with the English ones.
while henry viii's second wife, ann, and mother of elizabeth i seems to get written about more, this is a story about queen catherine, first wife and mother of henry's first surviving child, queen mary.
this catherine loves her husband very much. she wants to give her a husband the son he so desperately wants. she seems to get pregnant easily but all but 2 are stillborn. she finally delivers a son, but he dies shortly after. mary is the only child who lives.
the book is through her eyes. while she was raised by queen isabell of spain to be a good queen, henry was not raised to be a king. she is not only older in age but in maturity. she is a most adept negotiator, while the king is not. she is calmer and more sedate than the king who is in constant motion. he really appears to be a spoiled, uncontrolable brat.
I liked this version of Cetherine which was neither too romantic, nor too harsh - a realistic vision of what an older woman married to and dependent on a spoiled selfish boy might have to endure....
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