June 3, 2013

The Tudor Book Blog Reading Challenge: June and Giveaway!

I can't believe it is already June!!! This year has honestly flown by. May was an exciting month, full of many "Tudor" moments, including the anniversary of the execution of Anne Boleyn.

Other exciting things happening this month:
  • Shannon Leigh posted a review of The Concubine by Norah Lofts on her blog The Most Happy Reader.
  • Ester posted a review for Julia Fox's Jane Boleyn as well as The Wives of Henry VIII by Antonia Fraser.
  • Eva reviewed Queen of This Realm: The Tudor Queens (Queens of England #2) by Jean Plaidy on Good Reads, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel on Good Reads, and Bringing Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel on Good Reads.
  • Chrissy reviewed Margaret Campbell Barnes' The Tudor Rose.
  • Jaclyn Reviewed Jean Plaidy’s Murder Most Royal.
  • Lisa reviewed The Kingmakers Daughter by Phillippa Gregory.
  • Jenn reviewed Mistress of Mourning by Karen Harper on her blog Book Worm's Love of Books.
Unfortunately, no new entries this month. Don't forget, you can sign up and enter reviews until December 30, 2013!

Now onto another exciting matter...A giveaway!

Author Sandra Byrd has been kind enough to offer a prize to those participating in the Tudor Book Blog Reading Challenge! The prize is a complete set of her Ladies-in-Waiting Series: To Die ForThe Secret Keeper, and recently released Roses Have Thorns.

To be considered for this giveaway, you must be signed up for The Tudor Book Blog Reading Challenge, and have completed at least one review. If you meet these criteria and wish to be added to the drawing, leave a short comment stating that on the TBBRC Giveaway Post here.

13 comments:

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed Diane Haeger’s novel “The Queen’s Rival”. Published in 2011, this quick read is about Henry’s mistress, Elizabeth “Bessie” Blount. Beginning as a fairy tale, young Bess is enchanted by court life and cannot believe it when she has somehow, through no intention on her part, captured the attention of the young king. (Not only young, but apparently drop dead gorgeous, with the overwhelming scent of ‘man’ all over him; she cannot help herself; can one blame her?) Henry is charming, personable, has a hidden soft side, and holds much honor in his actions. I found it interesting that he was presented as struggling with his infidelity - women provided a distraction and a release from the stressful life of being king; he wasn’t proud of it, keeping his affairs as private as he could, but he tried to be respectful to these women, providing them with gifts and even husbands. He knew he was a heartbreaker, and was sorry for that, but he never gave them his own heart until he fell for Bess. Her eventual birth of his son made him into a proud papa, though the end to their relationship was a blow to Bess. The removal of Henry Fitzroy to be with his father is heartbreaking, but the little ways she is still a part of his life is so dear to her. A very interesting and touching story, certainly brimming with ‘what ifs’ and the wish to believe their love was true and long-lasting.

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  2. Review of C. W. Gortner's The Last Queen is now available on my blog: The Most Happy Reader:
    http://themosthappyreader.blogspot.com/2013/06/juana-of-spain-sister-of-catherine-of.html

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  3. Review of Susan Higginbotham's The Stolen Crown: The Secret Marriage that Forever Changed the Fate of England is now available on my blog: The Most Happy reader.
    http://themosthappyreader.blogspot.com/2013/06/the-wars-of-roses-through-eyes-of-kate.html

    Enjoy!

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  4. Reviews on Goodreads (links below)

    The Lady in the Tower by Jean Plaidy (review 17)http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/639123022

    Catherine Parr by Elizabeth Norton (review 18)
    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7006969-catherine-parr

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  5. Alison Plowden's "The Young Elizabeth" is part one of a four-part biography (sometimes known as the "Elizabeth Quartet"); this one covers her life from birth to Mary's death. It reads like a novel, and the introduction includes some interesting notes about her Welsh Tudor ancestors. Highly recommended.

    Esther Sorkin

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  6. Just finished "Danger to Elizabeth", part 2 of Plowden's "Elizabethan Quartet". This one focuses more on Elizabeth and the Catholics ... both at home and abroad, but focuses more on William Allen and his priests, rather than Mary, Queen of Scots. The author really tries to be even-handed, but her sympathies are all with Elizabeth. Very good.

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  7. Review of "Her Mother's Daughter: A Novel of Mary Tudor" is now available on my blog: The Most Happy Reader http://themosthappyreader.blogspot.com

    I think this is my 19th review... Could it be? Am I a reading Queen??

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  8. Review of Her Highness, The Traitor, The Lady Elizabeth, My Lady of Cleves and The King's Daughter: A Novel of the First Tudor Queen are now available on my blog, The Most Happy Reader: http://themosthappyreader.blogspot.com

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  9. I just finished reading "The Queen's Mistake" (2009), Diane Haeger's novel about Catherine Howard. Catherine embodies an interesting mix of beauty, passion, and naivety; a woman with a gentle, kind nature, trapped in a cruel game. She is very much aware of the danger and deception in accepting the King's attention, particularly since she has already been intimate with one of Henry's most trusted companions, Thomas Culpeper. Thomas is in love with Catherine, but for both to live, it must be held in check. Though Catherine is faithful to Henry, she gives her heart to Thomas and, being surrounded by enemies, has only Jane Boleyn to share her secret. The knowledge of Anne Boleyn's demise haunts her, and all too soon she comes face to face with the king's dark side. I couldn't help but feel compassion for the frustrated Culpeper, and absolute disgust for Henry who is entirely self-centered and borderline psychotic. While I do like Haeger's writing style, interesting plot and depth of her characters, this story is just really depressing!

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  10. Continuing my reviews of Alison Plowden's "Elizabethan Quartet" (I have them as four separate books, but they also come bound in one volume) ... this one is "Marriage With My Kingdom" ... another books on her courtships. Very good summary, with background information as to the general foreign situation, with some explanation of how the English eventually came to fear a foreign marriage more than they feared a queen without a child or other known heir. I wish someone would include, by way of background information, the reasons why courtships played such a large role in foreign policy (tradition of marriage sealing alliances; the idea that Elizabeth's husband could control England, etc.)

    Esther Sorkin

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  11. Just thought I would finish my reviews of Plowden's "quartet" and wanted to keep them together ... the last book is "Elizabeth Regina" and covers the last 15 years of her reign/life. I found it sad ... just after the defeat of the Spanish Armada, she begins losing everyone she cares about (starting with Robert Dudley) and everything starts going to h*** in a handbasket ... military problems (even the victories are more costly than they are worth); the weather goes bad, bringing famine; her troubles with Essex, etc.

    Esther Sorkin

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  12. http://impressionsinink.blogspot.com/2013/06/review-elizabeth-woodville-life-real.html

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  13. http://impressionsinink.blogspot.com/2013/06/review-queen-of-scots-true-life-of-mary.html

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