Top positive review
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Fascinating read on a new area of Henry VIII's history
on 22 May 2005
I bought this book because most other books on Henry VIII concentrate on his earlier years and in particular the Anne Boleyn era. If however you want to know more about his relationship with Katherine Parr and how his thoughts and actions had changed in his last years and the possible reasons for those changes, then read this book!
Although the early parts of his life and former five wives are mentioned, the main detail of this book is the era of about 1543-47. It provides some wonderful insights on how Katherine Parr dealt with such an infamous husband, and managed to bring all the family(various half-siblings) together in Henry's last years....in particular forming a close bond with the future Edward VI, and Elizabeth I.
There is a lot of information on the politics of the court over those last few years, and perhaps some of the most interesting details are theories on the health of the king. Some new and very convincing arguments are written about the illnesses of Henry.
This is the first book on Henry VIII where as a reader I have felt most close to knowing the man's character. It is very hard not to feel a certain amount of sympathy for him after reading this book, in spite of all his cruel and tyrannical acts of so called justice. There are fascinating details about the king's various Wills and ultimately what happened upon his death, and his funeral, which are often left out of other books.
In conclusion, if you like this period of history and want to know more about the later years of Henry, then buy this book, you won't be disappointed. 5 stars!!