Saturday, December 4, 2010

"Katherine The Queen" by Linda Porter

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 First - apologies for the odd formatting of this post - too many broken spaces! I edited it from a word doc and this is the odd result!

Katherine Parr is really an interesting figure - a woman who was ahead of her Tudor time. She was highly intelligent, well educated and well read - and she survived her oft married husband - Henry VIII.

There has not been that much written about her life however - until now. This book is a really well written, thoroughly researched and utterly captivating glimpse into the life of this remarkable Queen. Linda Porter has a remarkable way with biographies. They come to life under her pen. I have been a life long fan of historical fiction - based on British history. Some time ago I decided that I wanted to fill in the fictitious gaps with non-fiction. This book reads as easily as fiction. It's a pleasure - not pedantic, not dry - but completely easy and pleasurable to read. It took me only a few days to read this book and it is a book that will remain in my collection.

The book covers :

The early life of Katherine Parr,

Her two previous marriages (I had not heard much about the first before reading this book)

How she made her way into Court life and how Henry decided to make her his sixth life

Her relationship with Henry's three children and her own step-daughter from her second marriage (another fact that had not registered in my head before)

How she narrowly missed being another statistic for murdered Queens of England.

Her life after Henry's death.

Life with Thomas Seymour and the kerfuffle with Princess Elizabeth and Thomas Seymour.

Her death giving birth to her longed for child.

This book covers it all and does so in a most enjoyable way. If you are an Anglophile as I am this book is, simply, a must read. It's a should read for anyone who enjoys biographies, British Royalty and British history.

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