Monday, August 2, 2010

Young Bess

Author: Margaret Irwin
Publication Date: 1944, reprint March 2010
Genre: Adult Historical Fiction
Copy provided by: Sourcebooks
Summary (via Goodreads):

Growing up in the shadow of her dead mother, the infamous Anne Boleyn, young Princess Elizabeth has learnt to be continuously on the watch for the political games played out around her. It is never certain when one might rise, or precariously fall, out of royal favor.

When her distant father, Henry VIII, dies, the future brightens for Elizabeth. She is able to set up a home with Henry's last wife, Katherine Parr who now has a new husband, Tom Seymour. Tom, however, is playing a risky game. Marrying a widowed queen is one thing, flirting with the King's daughter and second in line to the throne is another. As the adolescent Elizabeth finds herself dangerously attracted to him, danger encroaches upon herself and the kingdom.

Why I read this: I love historical fiction and have been fascinated with this time period for quite some time.

Plot: This novel follows the life of the daughter of Anne Boelyn - Elizabeth. The plot felt slow moving most of the time - the history buildup at the beginning felt a little overdone and more like a history book. The whole book read a little more like a history book told through a story but livened up after 50 pages in.

Characters: You definitely get into the head of Bess and how like Anne she really turned out to be - even as a child.

Relatability: After watching the Tudors and reading a few books about that specific time period, I already knew quite a bit of the background already. It's definitely an interesting period in England's history.

Cover Commentary: I love the new cover.

Rating: 3/5 Roses

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  1. I had not heard of this book yet. It sounds great. I agree with you I just love this cover!!

  2. I do love the cover. And this is a fascinating period of history, but it is one that I feel that I almost know too well at the expense of getting to know more about other areas of history. Still, this sounds like an interesting story and I'll keep it in mind, but I doubt I'll be rushing to the store to buy it.

  3. Wasn't there a movie called this back in the 40s or 50s?


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