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Young and Damned and Fair Audiobook

Young and Damned and Fair: The Life of Catherine Howard, Fifth Wife of King Henry VIII

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Publisher's Summary

Written with an exciting combination of narrative flair and historical authority, this interpretation of the tragic life of Catherine Howard, fifth wife of Henry VIII, breaks new ground in our understanding of the very young woman who became queen at a time of unprecedented social and political tension and whose terrible errors in judgment quickly led her to the executioner's block.

On the morning of July 28, 1540, as King Henry's VIII's former confidant Thomas Cromwell was being led to his execution, a teenager named Catherine Howard began her reign as queen of a country simmering with rebellion and terrifying uncertainty. Sixteen months later the king's fifth wife would follow her cousin Anne Boleyn to the scaffold, having been convicted of adultery and high treason.

The broad outlines of Catherine's career might be familiar, but her story up until now has been incomplete. Unlike previous accounts of her life, which portray her as a naïve victim of an ambitious family, this compelling and authoritative biography will shed new light on Catherine Howard's rise and downfall by reexamining her motives and showing her in her context, a milieu that goes beyond her family and the influential men of the court to include the aristocrats and, most critically, the servants who surrounded her and who, in the end, conspired against her. By illuminating Catherine's entwined upstairs/downstairs worlds as well as societal tensions beyond the palace walls, the author offers a fascinating portrayal of court life in the 16th century and a fresh analysis of the forces beyond Catherine's control that led to her execution - from diplomatic pressure and international politics to the long-festering resentments against the queen's household at court.

Young and Damned and Fair changes our understanding of one of history's most famous women while telling the compelling and very human story of complex individuals attempting to survive in a dangerous age.

©2016 Gareth Russell. Excerpt from "Die Lorelei" by Stevie Smith, from Collected Poems of Stevie Smith, ©1957. Reprinted from New Directions Publishing Corp. (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers, Ltd.

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  •  
    Pin West Kempsey, Australia 07-08-17
    Pin West Kempsey, Australia 07-08-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wonderful"

    I have not read any of Mr Russell's work before and was oh so pleased to have found this author. Such well researched and informative work and presented in a manner that didn't send me to sleep. Jenny Funnell's performance was alive, but she did have some 'interesting' pronunciation moments. These, however, did not detract from the overall pleasure of listening. DO TRY ! worth the credits.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Linda Lou Cave Creek, AZ USA 05-15-17
    Linda Lou Cave Creek, AZ USA 05-15-17 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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    "NOT WORTH THE TIME OR CREDIT"

    This book is about everything EXCEPT Catherine Howard. Irish Parliament, Scottish royalty, every person ever mentioned in books about the Tudor Dynasty. Poor Catherine was Queen Consort for 16 months before being beheaded by the tyrannical old pervert Henry VIII. She added nothing to history and would not even be remembered if she's married a country squire. The author tells us very little about Catherine, instead he filled a book with English mores and customs of the era. You can learn these same facts in Alison Weir's "Henry VIII: King and Court".

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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