Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Review: The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory

The Queen's Fool by 

Summary: It is winter, 1553. Pursued by the Inquisition, Hannah Green, a fourteen-year-old Jewish girl, is forced to flee Spain with her father. But Hannah is no ordinary refugee. Her gift of "Sight," the ability to foresee the future, is priceless in the troubled times of the Tudor court. Hannah is adopted by the glamorous Robert Dudley, the charismatic son of King Edward's protector, who brings her to court as a "holy fool" for Queen Mary and, ultimately, Queen Elizabeth. Hired as a fool but working as a spy; promised in wedlock but in love with her master; endangered by the laws against heresy, treason, and witchcraft, Hannah must choose between the safe life of a commoner and the dangerous intrigues of the royal family that are inextricably bound up in her own yearnings and desires. 

Review: My least favorite in her Tudor series due to the book being told from the viewpoint of a character I didn't much care for.

I know authors historical fiction can and do twist history to their purposes and almost all dialogue will have to be created, but I like my historical fiction to be as close to history as possible and if not, I want it to be entertaining. I am not sure if there were women fools, but I didn't mind the idea. I, unfortunately, did not like the character of Hannah. She is a 20th century woman thrown back to the 16th century. There was a large disconnect between her beliefs and the time period. It was too much of a contrast. Hannah makes a lot stupid and foolish decisions that only bring her pain and dismay. She felt too high and mighty for my liking. 

Her character felt merely like a plot device to show the lives of Elizabeth and Mary. I highly doubt a fool would have been taken into such high confidences and even if the queen and princess felt friendly to her, I doubt they would see easily share their feelings and thoughts. I did enjoy the changing contrast between Elizabeth and Mary, but I did not feel that a fool character had to be invented to show that contrast. 


Recommendation: I would only recommend this book to people who will read anything they can about Elizabeth or Mary or people who have read her other Tudor novels. 

No comments:

Post a Comment