Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Philippa Gregory: The Boleyn Inheritance

The stories of Lady Jane Rochford, Anne of Cleves, and Katherine Howard are told in Philippa Gregory’s latest tale of the Tudor court, The Boleyn Inheritance.

Anne of Cleves is Henry’s Bavarian born fourth wife, Catherine Howard, an English teenager that catches Henry’s eye, is his fifth wife, and Jane Boleyn (Lady Rochford) is a lady of Henry’s court whose testimony sent her husband and her sister-in-law, Anne Boleyn, to the scaffold just a few years before.

These three women’s lives are bound together as they all try to survive in a court that is ruled by a man who changes his mind almost by the hour. The novel is full of court intrigue and politics told from each of the three women’s point of view. The change in narrators will keep readers interested in the plight of each woman, even though most will already know the story of who was divorced, beheaded, or survived.

Philippa Gregory is a fantastic writer of historical fiction. If you are a stickler for reading historical fiction in order by time period/chain of events, then read her Tudor novels in this order:

The Constant Princess
The Other Boleyn Girl
The Boleyn Inheritance
The Queen's Fool
The Virgin's Lover

The first one of Gregory's that I read was The Other Boleyn Girl. It is a great introduction to her writing style- lots of historical detail, politics, and some romance thrown in for good measure. Another favoite is The Virgin's Lover because I love anything about Elizabeth I. Check out her website at http://www.philippagregory.com/

Monday, March 5, 2007

Library Thing

One of the things that I have been working on the last two weeks is inputting all of my fiction collection at home into Library Thing. If you've never heard of Library Thing or used it before, you have to check it out. It is an amazing tool for organizing your books and connecting with others and getting suggestions to read. Check out Library Thing so you can see what's on my fiction shelves at home.

I have to warn you though, there's not a whole lot on my shelves at home. I guess you can say I'm a good library user- most of my reading material I get from the libraries I visit. I only buy a book for a couple of reasons-

1. The book had a profound effect on me
2. I'll read it more than once
3. It's something I will use for research
4. It was a gift
5. I couldn't get it at the library and really wanted to read it right away

I'm more apt to buy nonfiction, because I like to look at it again and again and study it. This is the case with my collection of Rolling Stones books, history books, Sex Pistols and punk books, and books on The Doors. I guess you can say I'm a music fan!