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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Polished and Prolific
I've read every one of Terry Tyler's novels and each has been a lovely retreat. Her prose is effortless, lifting off the page and grabbing readers by the shirt. She never tells the same story twice, doesn't rely on formula, tries new things and yet her style and voice are unmistakable. Kings and Queens is so different, so good, I had to force myself to slow down and spend...
Published 15 months ago by Cynthia Harrison

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you like Tudor-set novels, you will have fun with this
This is the first novel by Terry Tyler that I have read. It is the rollicking story of property developer Harry Lanchester. A property developer you may think, hardly your usual hero type? But he is not just any Harry, he is King Henry VIII updated to modern times. I started reading this after a heavyweight novel and being in need of light refreshment, and had already...
Published 3 months ago by Sandradan1


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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Polished and Prolific, 28 April 2014
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
I've read every one of Terry Tyler's novels and each has been a lovely retreat. Her prose is effortless, lifting off the page and grabbing readers by the shirt. She never tells the same story twice, doesn't rely on formula, tries new things and yet her style and voice are unmistakable. Kings and Queens is so different, so good, I had to force myself to slow down and spend a few days with it. Tyler writes intelligent page-turners. I could have gobbled this one up, but chose to read slow and deep. The premise here is patriarchy, still alive and well in the world of Harry Lanchester, the teenaged beautiful boy who unexpectedly inherits the family business when his older brother and father die. The story spans the decades from the 1970s into the new Millennium, but never in the 40+ years do the females in the Lanchester line get a fair shake. Wives, daughters, and sisters are all considered less than by Henry, as by his father. He longs for a son, but his wives keep giving him daughters. Henry loves well and often, accruing six wives and many more lovers as he cuts a swath through society. Remind you of someone? The similarities to Henry Tudor the Eighth and his unfortunate wives are intentional and Tyler has great fun updating Harry's unscrupulous behavior. She handles the foibles and downfalls of each wife in modern believable ways with delicious twists readers won't see coming. The period bits are spot on, but my personal favorite is how Tyler makes the 80s come alive with her magic pen, from Dynasty shoulder pads to rampant cocaine use. (Remember when it was thought to be a "safe" drug? Ah, if only 'twas true, as one of Harry's wives can attest.) This is a saga in the best sense of the word, updated for the modern world. Sink your teeth into it and savor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The girls are just wild about Harry, 23 July 2014
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
Almost five centuries after his death, the life, loves and political and religious machinations of Henry VIII continues to grip our imaginations.

Author Terry Tyler’s modern-day portrayal of the Tudor king as the dynamic, driven CEO of a UK real estate corporation is a unique and satisfying glimpse into the swirling maelstrom of power and prestige, lust and loss, and dark moments that marked the monarch’s reign.

The novel is told from the perspective of key figures in the king’s life, freshly painted in 20th century clothing and attitudes, but retaining their 16-century significance: his six wives and his childhood friend, Charles Brandon each take turns narrating the action from their points of view.

Their combined stories paint the picture of a brilliant—if unethical—titan, driven to continually prove his prowess both in the business realm and the bedroom.

Anyone familiar with the Tudor saga will know what’s coming. However, Tyler’s strength is that she’s able to breathe new life into the well-worn tale.

She draws in the reader by cleverly re-imagining such historic figures as Anne Boleyn (rechristened Annette Hevers) and Catherine Howard (Keira Howard) as women of today. Tyler presents them with warmth and empathy—refusing to resort to their easily clichéd depictions—but never shying away from their tragic failings.

She even manages to find a sprinkling of sympathy for the brilliant but tortured Harry, a king among men, even if only in his own musings.

“Kings and Queens” is the perfect read for anyone captured by the drama of almost 500 years past, as well as those who simply appreciate the battles that can rage in ones’ own heart.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, unusual, clever read, 16 Dec. 2014
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
Sometimes I read a book that makes me think ‘I wish I’d thought of that!’ ‘Kings and Queens’ is a wonderful, clever book that brings the infamous history of Henry VIII and his many wives into modern times, detailing the life and loves of Harry Lanchester as he unexpectedly inherits control of his father’s company.
This is a real page turner with realistically drawn characters that hold your attention through every marriage, affair, dodgy deal and tragedy. The multiple viewpoints work really well and give the reader the opportunity to see Harry from many different sides, not all flattering. It was enjoyable to get into the shoes of the women he falls in love with and the narration of his friend Will brought another perspective as his view of his friend developed over the years, loyal still but increasingly more able to see the flaws.
The attention to detail as the characters grow up and move through the decades was excellent - the economic ups and downs and the fashions (those eighties shoulder pads), food, music and tastes of the decades was spot on.
Terry Tyler makes writing look easy (although of course it isn't) and shows great skill in this engaging, entertaining read.
I can’t wait for the sequel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you like Tudor-set novels, you will have fun with this, 9 April 2015
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This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
This is the first novel by Terry Tyler that I have read. It is the rollicking story of property developer Harry Lanchester. A property developer you may think, hardly your usual hero type? But he is not just any Harry, he is King Henry VIII updated to modern times. I started reading this after a heavyweight novel and being in need of light refreshment, and had already started then discarded one book on my Kindle after two pages. This provided the page-turner my weary brain required, the story race along and is an ideal read for holidays, a long train or plane journey, or just when you want to cosset yourself.
If you like Tudor-set novels, you will have fun with this. It is easy to work out that that Cathy is Catherine of Aragon and Annette Hever is Anne Boleyn, but I enjoyed recalling my Tudor history – and reading of Philippa Gregory novels – to work out the Tudor equivalent of the modern characters. Of course, as we know the story of Henry and his wives, we can work out what happens to Harry and his, though Tyler puts a modern twist on each story that draws you in. I found myself comparing her writing style to the ultimate page-turner Jilly Cooper. I wonder if Ms Tyler has written about polo?
Just one small criticism: I found the beginning a bit underwhelming and almost stopped reading, I am glad I didn’t.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Fun!, 10 May 2014
By 
Charles L. R. Dougherty (Cruising the Caribbean aboard Sailing Vessel Play Actor) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
Terry Tyler delivers the story promised in the product description, spiced with her own brand of humor in the telling. While the main thrust of the story is well known, she threw in enough twists to keep it interesting. Being somewhat constrained as to the plot, she used some ironic juxtapositions of the characters and their traits to keep me guessing.

I've enjoyed several of her books, and I confess that I wondered how she would fare with this one. I needn't have worried; she did her usual masterful job of making mundane details of peoples' lives utterly fascinating. I believe that's her particular talent as a writer.

While I'm not exceptionally well versed in Tudor history, I've always been fascinated by Henry VIII because of his willingness to use the power of his position to have his own way. As self-centered as he was, Henry had some sensitivity to how society perceived his behavior. In spite of that, he didn't let his better judgment overcome his base instincts. I was curious to see how the people around Harry would react to his licentiousness in a more modern, presumably more open-minded period. Ms. Tyler did a credible job of demonstrating how little the basic human qualities have changed in the last few centuries. While extramarital affairs and divorce may carry less stigma in Harry's day than in Henry's, it's clear that a self-centered jerk is still a self-centered jerk.

It was also great fun to look for the references and metaphors that Ms. Tyler tucked away in her version of the story, some in quite unexpected ways. There were a few that bordered slapstick, just as there were in the original story, but many were subtle. I'm sure that I missed a number of those, possibly some of the better ones. I enjoyed the ones that I found so much that I've resolved to brush up on my history and have another go at Kings and Queens. I have no doubt that it will be more entertaining the second time through. Of course, I have to get that done in time for the sequel.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A must-read for historians and non-historians alike, 5 July 2015
By 
Kats (Essex, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
I've never been a big fan of historical fiction but the story of the Tudors is one that I know and enjoy. Terry Tyler has brilliantly recreated the story in a contemporary setting. Every character in the story of King Henry VIII - here the charismatic Harry Lanchester who unexpectedly inherits the family's property company - has a modern-day counterpart. The story unfolds over thirty-five years from the early seventies to the late noughties, each era brilliantly evoked with wonderful authentic details of the era, all guaranteed to raise a smile. Those fashions!

But the real genius is in the characters. Each of the wives tell the story from their own unique point of view, and each will live in your memory for a long time. While some of these women are flawed, one deeply so, each story is told with warmth and empathy, and each held my attention. Their stories are cleverly held together by the viewpoint of Will, Harry's trusted friend and advisor. For history fans there are some wonderful touches, such as the fact that Anne Boleyn's modern counterpart, Annette Hever, hangs out with a band called Traitor's Gate. I'm not so well-versed with the period that I knew all the characters, but that didn't detract from my enjoyment in the least. Hannah Cleveley, in particular, is a wonderful character who will stay in my heart for a long time. And of course, the plot is outstanding. Every now and again I shake my head and think 'this is hard to believe,' then I remind myself that this is based on a true story!

Terrry Tyler's writing style is fluid and readable, with just enough detail to create a memorable picture but not slow the pace, which races along. It's difficult to put this book down, and I read it over a couple of days.

In short, this book is staggeringly good, and I'd recommend it to all. I've already started the sequel!
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5.0 out of 5 stars By heck I enjoyed it!, 16 April 2015
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This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
My mother used to have the habit, when she finished a book of closing it up and saying, ‘By heck, I enjoyed that’. When I finished Terry Tyler’s Kings and Queens I had a ‘by heck’ moment.

I only discovered Terry Tyler’s novels last year, they are true page-turners and I’ve enjoyed each one. This book, Kings and Queens, is both a family saga and a clever contemporary take on history; Harry Lanchester lives a hedonistic life that, in many ways, parallels that of Henry VIII. He might not order the death of his wives and lovers but they are just as easily discarded, he is portrayed as a patriarch and is at the centre of his world. And that world is filled with everything that makes up ‘real life’ today; stable families, dysfunctional families, erratic individuals, stable characters, revenge and bitterness, love and caring, sex, lust, romance, death and grief, even murder – the list is endless and multi layered.

Normally I say I don’t include spoilers in my reviews but the background, the general plot in Kings and Queens is obviously a given. Yet the narrative is so original and innovative, it is easy for the reader to sit back and enjoy the modern-day twists and turns that the author conjures up as though the story is completely unknown.

As usual, Terry Tyler presents characters that are rounded, well drawn and given so many different facets to their personalities that it is easy to cheer with them, be irritated by them and to suffer with them. Through the various individualistic voices of the characters (and the dialogue is brilliantly written) the author takes us, chapter by chapter through the story. This is a particularly favourite writing style for me as a reader. Told in the first person point of view, there is always the slight suspicion (or knowledge?) that the narrator is sometimes unreliable; this certainly made me slow down and think about some passages, even though I so much wanted to know what happened next.

Kings and Queens covers the decades of the nineteen-seventies to the present time. The author’s research on each era is impeccable; every setting is drawn with subtle touches through the business economy, the fashions, the communities, the music, the social scene.

This is a stand-alone novel but I knew there was a sequel, Last Child, so I read both in quick succession. The review for , Last Child will follow soon. As for Kings and Queens, all I can say is that I was hooked from the first page and cannot recommend it highly enough.

By heck I enjoyed it!
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5.0 out of 5 stars ’ I certainly wasn’t disappointed! Terry Tyler clearly has an extensive knowledge of ..., 7 April 2015
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
I received my copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Kings and Queens was my very first Terry Tyler novel but it definitely won’t be the last! Kings and Queens tells the story of Harry Lanchester, property developing magnate, whose life is very similar Henry VIII, except he lives in modern times. Kings and Queens begins in the 70’s when Harry is a teenager and runs all the way through to 2007. I’m a big fan of Henry VIII novels, such as The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory, so I was very interested to see how he would translate to the present. My biggest question was ‘how would he get rid of all of his wives when he can’t just behead them?’ I certainly wasn’t disappointed!

Terry Tyler clearly has an extensive knowledge of the Tudors which was evident in all of the subtle and quite funny references to real people and events. I don’t think that knowledge of the Tudors is necessary to enjoy Kings and Queens, but the renames and references to the past were done so skillfully that I did have a laugh at most of them. The author also includes a mini biography on Henry VIII for anyone who would like to brush up on the real Henry as well, which was a very thoughtful touch.

Kings and Queens was written in first person narrative from the perspective of all of Harry’s wives and these were broken up by entries by Harry’s best friend, Will Brandon/The Duke of Suffolk. I think it added to Harry’s mystique that we never heard his perspective throughout the novel. He certainly is a fascinating character!

Each of the characters that we do hear from has their own distinct voice and each time the perspective changed I would find myself taking their side in things, even though that required a complete 180 from the previous chapter. I’ve never changed my mind so many times in one novel! Every single character was developed so well, with just the right balance between acknowledging their historical counterparts and making them a brand new character who lives only in this novel. I could definitely ‘hear’ each character in my mind while I was reading.

Kings and Queens also had quite a few funny moments. I loved all of the bad fashion descriptions from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s and there was just the right amount of British slang to be funny, not contrived.

As you can probably tell, I loved Kings and Queens. Fans of Henry VIII will enjoy the nods to the past, but anyone who likes a good romantic drama or interesting and well developed characters and story lines should add Kings and Queens to their TBR pile. I can’t wait to read the sequel, Last Child, which is coming out soon!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Addictive reading, 12 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
This book is intense!

For anyone who has watched series like Dallas, Dynasty, The Colbys or Falcon Crest (yes, I admit it - I have) this brought back so many memories! My grandmother was obsessed and I remember coming home from school and watching Falcon Crest with her, or when I was sick watching Dynasty. Dallas was much discussed at school! Yes, I am going back approx 30 years!

There was something about characters like Joan Collins, who nearly slept with her son and seduced anyone in sight that made for addictive viewing! As well as the alcoholics and drug addicts! (The rich have it SO tough)

So back to the book. Kings and Queens is all about this & more!

Romance, adultery, suspense, a lot of death and heartache, "fit" men and women, and also (which was nice to see) normal boring characters that fit in nicely to the massacre that is the old-fashioned Lanchester mentality!

Lanchester's Empire is a male dominated family business which relies on the family "male" heir to provide continuity.

Things do not go well from the start though. The first born, Alex, dies in a rock-climbing accident and the second son, Harry, takes the reins of the business at the age of 18!

The saga that continues as his love-life goes on the biggest roller-coaster EVER is extreme.

Personally, I found many of the scenarios to be unbelievable but this is the beauty of fiction! Perfect escapism into a world where many are crooks, adulterers and ruthless murderers!

I highly recommend this if any of what I have rambled on about makes you think, "This is for me!" I must add that having read several of Terry Tyler's books before her style is definitely makes for addictive reading, even though at times some of the character changes left me slightly disorientated.

*~ I got this book in exchange of an honest review via Rosie's Book Review Team~*
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4.0 out of 5 stars For Lovers of Tudor England and Contemporary Family Sagas, 3 May 2015
This review is from: Kings And Queens (Kindle Edition)
I loved the unique premise of Kings and Queens. It is an original take on the Tudors by transferring Henry VIII and his court to contemporary England. It tells the story of the life and loves of Harry Lanchester, who has a successful property developing company, Lanchester Estates, in the south of England. It was fun working out who the contemporary characters might have been in Tudor England, and watching how the author adapts them and their circumstances to recent times.
The author has chosen a very clever way of exposing her main character, who is denied a point of view in the novel. Various first person narrators, his wives and his best friend, Will Brandon, each with their unique voice, tell us all about Henry Lanchester, so that we get to know Him through the eyes of those closest to him.
Another noteworthy aspect is that it brings the reader face to face with the cyclical nature of life, love, and history. People with power, their behaviour, as well as the way those around them regard them, has not changed for centuries.
There are also many humorous moments, and twists and turns, making it an entertaining and enjoyable read. A must for lovers of Tudor England and contemporary family sagas.
I am looking forward to reading The Last Child, a sequel to Kings and Queens.
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Kings And Queens
Kings And Queens by Terry Tyler
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