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Catherine Howard: Henry's Fifth Failure

by D. Lawrence-Young

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I have read multiple books about Henry VIII, both fiction and nonfiction. While I do find the historical fiction easier and more enjoyable to read, I often wonder what is fact or fiction. This book was the same. Some believable, some not. However, it was a good interpretation of an old subject. It was anjoyable readbut I would not recommend for strict historical prospect.

I received a free copy of this book for an honest review. ( )
  stacey68 | Sep 4, 2014 |
I was given the opportunity to read this for free in exchange for an honest review from librarything.com.

Although this wasn't as historically accurate as most of the historical fiction I have read, it was still an engaging piece. Most historical fiction is that way though, if you stop t think about it. Just another take on sad little Catherine Howard, who had no idea what she was getting in to with the lecherous tyrant that was Henry VIII. i really enjoyed reading this! ( )
  LoriHopkins | Jun 26, 2014 |
I have always been fascinated by Henry VIII and his six wives. In fact, I have read several books on the subject. Catherine Howard: Henry’s Fifth Failure is the story of the king’s penultimate wife, from her birth to her death. She spent her childhood and teenage years with her step-grandmother, the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk. She was raised with other young nobility, and they could do pretty much what they wanted, as supervision was minimal. Needless to say, young Catherine got into trouble more than once, especially in regards to her involvement with boys. When she was 16 years old, the Howard family decided to use her to improve their status in court, and she became Anne of Cleves’ lady-in-waiting. That’s when Henry VIII noticed her, and when Catherine’s star rose. Unfortunately, it didn’t last very long as Catherine’s past caught up to her, and she paid the ultimate price for her naivete and bad judgement.

David Lawrence-Young chose to write the story from two different points of view: Catherine Howard’s and Robert Butcher’s, a guardsman in the Tower of London. Each chapter alternates between the two points of view, and I thought it was interesting to read the story from an outsider’s perspective, someone who was from a different class than the main protagonists. However, the character of Catherine could have been better developed. In addition, Robert Butcher was not a believable character. Indeed, it was very unlikely that he would ask his superiors repeatedly to explain their orders. He also seemed to know all the major players at court even when he had just started working as a guard at the Tower. This was surprising, especially as he would not have had a very good education as the son of a butcher. In fact, he barely knew how to read and write. However, I certainly enjoyed the historical parts of the novel, and it was interesting to have some background information regarding Catherine Howard’s short life.

To read the full review, please go to my blog (Cecile Sune - Book Obsessed). ( )
  cecile.sune | Jun 10, 2014 |
This is the second book I have read by the author and unfortunately I just do not like his style of writing. I did wonder if I had failed to appreciate his book on Anne of Cleves, however, this one on Catherine Howard has had the same effect on me and I did not enjoy reading either book. ( )
  Sahara20 | May 16, 2014 |
Although noble born Catherine Howard is rather a dim-witted floozie in this historical fiction. Her counterpoint, a guardsman at the Tower, provides a nice balance and interesting point of view. Reminders of high school history abound taking us through the time period from Anne Boleyn's execution to Catherine's own. ( )
  JaiW | May 13, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
Catherine Howard: Henry's Fifth Failure by D. Lawrence-Young

This is the story of Catherine Howard, the Duke of Norfolk’s niece, and King Henry VIII's 5th wife. The story starts with a bit of history on Catherine and how she became the kings Wife. We also hear of his other wive's, their executions and the point of view of one of the King's guards John Butcher.

This Historical tale has a bit of it all, sex, adultery, betrayal, infidelity, love and war. I liked the historical facts and fiction they blended well together. Those who love History with intrigue, and page turning drama will enjoy Catherine Howard: Henry's Fifth Failure.
added by SheriAWilkinson | editPrinceton, IL., Sheri A Wilkinson (Apr 14, 2013)
 
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0615969526, Paperback)

This historical novel has it all: sex and romance, violence and war, infidelity and intrigue. Catherine Howard, the Duke of Norfolk’s niece, is raised in the very free atmosphere of her grandmother’s palace. Here she becomes aware of her own sexuality and the exciting effect she has on the men at court around her. She is also an unknowing part of her uncle’s devious plan to obtain more influence with the king - he pushes her onto the newly-divorced and lovesick King Henry VIII who is looking for a fifth wife. Meanwhile, John Butcher has become a guard in the dreaded Tower of London. He guards the king, witnesses the executions of Anne Boleyn and Thomas More and takes part in the fighting in Ireland. However, when he returns to London, his meeting with Catherine Howard, the king’s fifth queen, produces unexpected and dramatic results. In D. Lawrence-Young’s second Tudor novel we learn how Catherine Howard’s passionate nature mixed with the murky, deadly politics of the Tudor court and a furious king produce a classic story of passionate love, disappointment and revenge on a royal scale.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:46 -0400)

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