Regular price: $26.64

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

Tracy Borman, author of the best-selling biography of Thomas Cromwell, takes us behind the scenes to reveal the intimate secrets of the Tudor court and the private lives of Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I and more.

'I do not live in a corner. A thousand eyes see all I do.' (Elizabeth I)

The Tudor monarchs were constantly surrounded by an army of attendants, courtiers and ministers. Even in their most private moments, they were accompanied by a servant specifically appointed for the task. A groom of the stool would stand patiently by as Henry VIII performed his daily purges, and when Elizabeth I retired for the evening, one of her female servants would sleep at the end of her bed.

These attendants knew the truth behind the glamorous exterior. They saw the tears shed by Henry VII upon the death of his son, Arthur. They knew the tragic secret behind 'Bloody' Mary's phantom pregnancies. And they saw the 'crooked carcass' beneath Elizabeth I's carefully applied makeup, gowns and accessories.

It is the accounts of these eyewitnesses, as well as a rich array of other contemporary sources, that historian Tracy Borman has examined more closely than ever before. With new insights and discoveries, and in the same way that she brilliantly illuminated the real Thomas Cromwell, The Private Life of the Tudors will reveal previously unexamined details about the characters we think we know so well.

©2016 Tracy Borman (P)2016 Hodder & Stoughton

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    144
  • 4 Stars
    57
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2

Performance

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    139
  • 4 Stars
    45
  • 3 Stars
    11
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    129
  • 4 Stars
    51
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    3
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Better than Weirs books.

Better representation of this era in English history,where the common man was inconsequential, as today.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A very good book about details of their lives

Enjoyed the pace of the telling facts that are revealded about the Tudors. The narraator was easy to listen to and probably will listen to this book again.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

So good

I found the story fascinating and while history buffs might miss all the goings on in state... It was the most interesting part to me.. Personal lives and personal practices of the time. The narrator was great.! Loved it! I was sad when it was over... Wanted the author and narrator to bring me up to present day.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Fills in the Gaps

If you could sum up The Private Lives of the Tudors in three words, what would they be?

This book fills in the gaps of what I already knew about the Tudors.

Who was your favorite character and why?

My favorite character was Henry VIII because the book really described what he was like and how he lived.

What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

What I found most interesting was learning about the various roles of the lords and ladies selected to serve the kings/queens.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Historical details

Any additional comments?

If you like historical details, like how they transported the court from castle to castle, what happened during childbirth, how expensive fabrics were in Tudor times ---- you will enjoy this book. I loved it.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Maggie
  • STUDIO CITY, CA, United States
  • 02-14-17

Enjoyable enough, but not alot new

Is there anything you would change about this book?

I wish there were more of the new details and those fun details about every day life. If you're listening to this book it's because you're interested in the Tudors, so you already know the history. The historical aspect was presented as if it were a great discovery. If you're not all that familiar with the Tudors, then this is a great, summary.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

It went into some detail about the household structure, which was interesting. People, including monarchs and political leaders, are a product of their environment, and this does flesh that out a bit more than one usually hears (or reads).

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

Narration was pretty decent. The tempo and tone matched the writing

Was The Private Lives of the Tudors worth the listening time?

The title promised to uncover the secrets of the Tudors, but I felt there wasn't alot new. If you're a fan of the Tudor Era, you probably already know most of what was included here. It certainly wasn't badly written or performed, and there were a few interesting moments, and tidbits I hadn't heard, but I've pretty much read it all before.

Any additional comments?

It wasn't so much uncovering secrets, as the title promised - but rather giving more details on the household routines, and some of the more domestic details.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Very informative, made me feel like I was there...

Where does The Private Lives of the Tudors rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This would easily be in my top 5 favorites on the Tudor period.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Henry VIII was my favorite...he seemed more like a real person and I enjoyed hearing more about everyday life in his world.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • KarenLee
  • Beaufort, SC United States
  • 01-06-17

Entertaining Look at the Tudors

Not at all boring or dry the way some non-fiction reads. Very interesting- new approach to era I thought I knew all about!

  • Overall

Great read

I really enjoyed the historical facts it gives the reader a total different look into that period loved it!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Amazing amazing amazing

I absolutely love this book! I have read a lot of history books on the tutors and this is one of the very best I've ever read! I love all the little details about clothing, Food, and every day life! I have listened to this book several times. If you love history this is a must read!

Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Gabrielle Harvey-Jones
  • 06-19-16

Utterly absorbing!

Beautifully written and wonderfully read, I found this book completely compelling! Every small, intimate detail of how these iconic figures lived their lives made each one of them more human and more accessible! A must read/listen for anyone with an interest in the period!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Aisling
  • 09-09-16

informative

I really enjoyed this book. I'm very interested in the tudor period and found this book gave a very unique insight into that time. If you enjoy history then I would highly recommend.
The narrator was very good. Even made some parts amusing.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • D.N.W.
  • 01-08-17

Captivating

What made the experience of listening to The Private Lives of the Tudors the most enjoyable?

Very well produced with interesting varied and authentic voices, true to the title and illuminating various personal aspects of the Tudors (it held one's interest, admittedly for a listener with a liking for history), and generous in length for an audiobook. One of the few lengthly audiobooks that took me months to finish in my car but I did, very well satisfied.

What about Jonathan Keeble and Sandra Duncan ’s performance did you like?

Excellent

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Narny
  • 09-27-16

fascinating insight into the Tudors

I thought there wouldn't be much more to be said about this rather dysfunctional family however there was so much I never knew. Excellent.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Lampy
  • 07-09-16

Beautifully written, beautifully read

Why did it have to end?!

By far the best audio book I've had to date. Beautifully written - fascinating and seamlessly moves through history in such a fluid way. Utterly captivating!

The narration was second to none, perfect. If only all audio books could be read by this narrator.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Corrinne
  • 10-01-16

Fascinating

A different slant on the lives of Henry VII and his descendants. Absorbing and most enjoyable

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • miss flavell
  • 08-19-16

Fascinating, funny and Tragic

Narrator was perfect, he nailed this book.
This really was so enjoyable, some parts made me laugh out loud and hit pause so I could share some funny fact with my family, stuck as the methods if contraception used!!!

I am gutted it is over😒

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Fiona
  • 08-25-17

Very illuminating!

Read in moderated tones, this book is a little gem and a must-listen for those interested in the details of Tudor court life. The transition through the Henrys to Elizabeth is skilfully done and, whilst I've read and listened to many such books, I would certainly rate this near the very top of my list.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • n.m.elder
  • 03-24-17

informative

brilliant lay out, and so informative that can imagine yourself there at the time. Brilliant

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jean the Bean
  • 02-10-17

Outstanding.

What a brilliant listen. Absolutely compelling and I will listen again soon. Highly recommended. I will buy more of Tracy Borman's books.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jane
  • 06-15-16

Facinating

Where does The Private Lives of the Tudors rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It was a great listen. The details of the lives of the Tudors was in depth.

What did you like best about this story?

Detail about every day living eg the diet, birthing and a modern day explanation of medical ailments they suffered.

What does Jonathan Keeble and Sandra Duncan bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Jonathon was brilliant but I don't think the female voice overs for the female characters was needed

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, it was on a long drive

1 of 1 people found this review helpful