Splendid and sumptuous historical novel from the internationally bestselling author, Philippa Gregory, telling of the early life of Katherine of Aragon. We think of Katherine of Aragon as the barren wife of a notorious king; but behind this legacy lies a fascinating story. Katherine of Aragon is born Catalina, the Spanish Infanta, to parents who ...
Splendid and sumptuous historical novel from the internationally bestselling author, Philippa Gregory, telling of the early life of Katherine of Aragon. We think of Katherine of Aragon as the barren wife of a notorious king; but behind this legacy lies a fascinating story. Katherine of Aragon is born Catalina, the Spanish Infanta, to parents who are both rulers and warriors. Aged four, she is betrothed to Arthur, Prince of Wales, and is raised to be Queen of England. She is never in doubt that it is her destiny to rule that far-off, wet, cold land. Her faith is tested when her prospective father-in-law greets her arrival in her new country with a great insult; Arthur seems little better than a boy; the food is strange and the customs coarse. Slowly she adapts to the first Tudor court, and life as Arthur's wife grows ever more bearable. But when the studious young man dies, she is left to make her own future: how can she now be queen, and found a dynasty? Only by marrying Arthur's young brother, the sunny but spoilt Henry. His father and grandmother are against it; her powerful parents prove little use. Yet Katherine is her mother's daughter and her fighting spirit is strong. She will do anything to achieve her aim; even if it means telling the greatest lie, and holding to it. Philippa Gregory proves yet again that behind the apparently familiar face of history lies an astonishing story: of women warriors influencing the future of Europe, of revered heroes making deep mistakes, and of an untold love story which changes the fate of a nation.
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This book drew me in from its first page and did not release me until the end. The characters are finely drawn and entirely believable. This is another one of Philippa Gregory's excellent historical novels. She is an outstanding author of this genre.
Aug 7, 2008
I found that this book was awesome! This was my second Philippa Gregory Book and I enjoyed imensely! She is a wonderful author! I have read the other Boleyn Girl and although this book was not as great as that one it was still wonderful, and I look forward to reading other books by her! I love that she actually researches the history before she writes the books! Anyway.... you should definatley read this book!
Aug 9, 2007
As in the majority of Phillippa Gregory's books, this story was entertaining and held my interest and as usual, I hated when it ended. If you love books about English King's and court you'll find this book one of the best!!
Jul 17, 2007
PHILLIPPA GREGORY PUTS A NEW SPIN ON THE OFT TOLD TALE OF KATHERINE OF ARAGON AND HENRY VIII. I COULD NOT REALLY GO ALONG WITH HER PREMISE AS IT CONTRADICTS ALL THE OTHER HISTORICAL ACCOUNTS I HAVE READ. I COULD NOT SEE KATHERINE LIVING OUT A LIE FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE AND BECAUSE OF HER BACKGROUND AND BELIEFS, I COULD NOT BUY HER FONDNESS FOR THE MUSLIM RELIGION. DO NOT READ THIS FOR THE HISTORY BUT LOOK AT IT AS JUST A STORY WITH REAL HISTORICAL NAMES ATTACHED TO THE CHARACTERS.
Mar 20, 2007
Fascinating history and tale
I have read several of this author's books, and this is my favorite. The word pictures she paints are absolutely lovely and the story riveting. Catalina, daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain is to marry Prince Edward. The young prince, with whom she falls deeply in love, dies young. From this point on we see a woman of great strength and determination emerge to marry Edward's brother and rule her adopted country of England as Catherine. The author brings to life some of the most fascinating characters in history.
Publishers Weekly, 2005-09-05 As youngest daughter to the Spanish monarchs and crusaders King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, Catalina, princess of Wales and of Spain, was promised to the English Prince Arthur when she was three. She leaves Spain at 15 to fulfill her destiny as queen of England, where she finds true love with Arthur (after some initial sourness) as they plot the future of their kingdom together. Arthur dies young, however, leaving Catalina a widow and ineligible for the throne. Before his death, he extracts a promise from his wife to marry his younger brother Henry in order to become queen anyway, have children and rule as they had planned, a situation that can only be if Catalina denies that Arthur was ever her lover. Gregory's latest (after Earthly Joys) compellingly dramatizes how Catalina uses her faith, her cunning and her utter belief in destiny to reclaim her rightful title. By alternating tight third-person narration with Catalina's unguarded thoughts and gripping dialogue, the author presents a thorough, sympathetic portrait of her heroine and her transformation into Queen Katherine. Gregory's skill for creating suspense pulls the reader along despite the historical novel's foregone conclusion. Agent, Melanie Jackson. (Dec.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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