3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A light and easy to read piece of historical fiction, but insubstantial and clunky in places,
This review is from: The Queen's Promise (Paperback)
This novel tells the story of Henry Percy, the heir to the Earldom of Northumberland, and his romance with the young Anne Boleyn and their secret betrothal. Therefore Henry Percy is really the central character of the novel rather than Anne herself. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, and one of strengths of the novel is that it does capture the bleak precariousness of life on the English/Scot border.
Although relatively easy reading, this novel did have a number of flaws for me. Firstly, the characterisation was rather weak; Henry himself seemed a rather two dimensional figure, as were indeed many of the other characters. The writing really lacked much depth, the descriptions of clothing became a little tedious and reptitive, and the narrative in places was very clunky, with much of the action and story being related via messengers. The elevation of Anne to Queen and her subsequent demise and execution were told in the last fifty or so pages, and this gave the novel a rather unbalanced feel, especially because the first half was quite slow. The bleakness of Tudor life for the common people, particularly in northern England, and the ruthlessness machinations of Henry VIII and his court were captured, but everything else felt rather superficial.