Customer Review

33 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book if not factually correct, 14 Feb 2003
This review is from: The Other Boleyn Girl (Paperback)
I read this book last year having always been intrigued by the Boleyn family. Philippa Gregory draws you in with her easy to read style so much so that at times I felt like I was spying on certain conversations and found myself with tears in my eyes during the last few chapters. If you are remotely interested in the Tudors or even if you want to enjoy a good romance then this is the book for you.

I would however, like to point out why this book didn't get 5 stars. The books only failing is that it is factually incorrect and many people seem to take what Philippa Gregory has written about as fact and not the fiction that it is.

There are many different stories about Anne Boleyn some painting her as a saint and some as an all out witch. I felt that Anne was portrayed well in the sense of her ambition and desire to be queen (it was rare in that day and age for a woman to be so sure of her own path which I think makes her an excellent role model). The second half of the book however, follows a story that is a 'rumour' and just one account of what may have really happened. Philippa Gregory states that Anne Boleyn was the eldest daughter when in fact it is still unknown which daughter was born first. According to many historians it is likely that Mary was the eldest. Also do not believe Mary to be the perfect angelic girl painted in this book. It has been recorded that she, unlike her sister Anne, was quite loose with her favours at a very early age, whilst studying in France. Before she was Henry's mistress the King of France at the time boasted that he had had the pleasure of her company on an intimate level referring to her as "my hackney carriage".

If you enjoy this book and would like to learn more I would recommend Alison Weir's book "The Six Wives of Henry VIII" as an excellent follow-on or alternatively "Six Wives" by David Starkey.
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