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Maid of the King's Court by Lucy…

Maid of the King's Court

by Lucy Worsley

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is an historical fiction book meant for young adult readers. I start with that because I have read some complaints about the writing or implausibility of the love interest. I think it is important to remember the target audience and getting them interested in history. That being said, adults who are fans of stories about the Tudors will find this an interesting perspective. I liked learning about court and Katherine from a cousin who is learning her place in the world. Yes, Eliza is immature, but that is to be expected in a young girl brought up to expect great things of herself and who has been taught her own importance. We get to watch Eliza grow and change as she develops more awareness of the world and herself.

This was an easy to read book about life in the Tudor court. It could have had a little more depth, but it was still a good novel to read. The story flowed well, and I am looking forward to reading the author's historical works. I liked that you could tell the author had done plenty of research, and still made an interesting tale for young readers.

I think fans of Tudor historical fiction will want to read this and introduce young readers to the topic with this book. ( )
  BittyCornwell | May 2, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Eliza Camperdowne is eventually sent to be a Maid at the court of King Henry the VIII and is also a cousin to the 5th wife, Katherine Howard. This is a delightful story of a behind the scenes life of royalty and those who are touched by it. What makes this story exceptional, is that it is so well written that you turn page after page until you are surprised to find yourself at the end. This would have taken me far less than 2 days to read if I didn't have other duties to attend to. I am not familiar with the author Lucy Worsley, but I am certainly a huge fan of hers now. I will be looking forward to other works of Ms. Worsley in the future. I don't want to give away any of the story but you just need to know that anyone who enjoys books on this topic will certainly enjoy this one as well! I highly recommend it! If the story line was more complex than I would have rated it higher. ( )
  Sparkle64 | Apr 21, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is a YA book, with a fictional main character, Eliza, who was meant to be a cousin to Henry VIII’s 5th wife, Katherine Howard. Eliza is sent away at 12-years old, after a marriage proposal doesn’t work out, basically to learn to be a courtier. She and her cousin, Katherine, are later sent to Henry VIII’s court to be ladies to Anne of Cleves, Henry’s 4th wife.

I quite enjoyed this story! It was quick to read, and somewhat simple and easy to read, but then it’s YA, so that’s to be expected. I thought it was an interesting take on why Katherine did what she did (though I still didn’t particularly like her!). ( )
  LibraryCin | Apr 19, 2017 |
This book by the popular British television historian Lucy Worsley was first published in Britain in 2016 as Eliza Rose.

It tells the story of Elizabeth (“Eliza”) Camperdowne, a fictional cousin of Katherine Howard, the fifth wife of Henry VIII. The author stated in an Afterword that she wanted to look at Katherine’s history more sympathetically, which she thought she could accomplish by taking the point of view of a cousin/confidant.

Katherine, when 16 or 17, married the 49-year-old Henry VIII in 1540, very soon after the annulment of his marriage to Anne of Cleves was arranged. Katherine only lasted sixteen months, however; she was beheaded on the grounds of treason for committing adultery.

Worsley does indeed come up with a compassionate and interesting explanation for Katherine’s behavior, although she doesn’t quite make her simpatico. But my main problem with the book was the fictional main character Eliza. This girl never reached the level of likable in my opinion. I found her to be spoiled, greedy, jealous, short-sighted, and cruel throughout the story, which began when Eliza was 12 and continued until she was 19. This also made it quite difficult for me to believe that the (also fictional) king’s page, Ned Barsby, would be so smitten with her. She was consistently mean to him, and looked down upon him for his low birth. The outcome between these two seemed quite fictional indeed.

As for the story in general, I thought it plodded a bit. As interesting as the Tudor period was, the author, who apparently is very successful at constructing stories for the BBC, never managed to make this book for young adults into a riveting story, in my view. ( )
  nbmars | Mar 22, 2017 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0763688061, Hardcover)

In the vibrant, volatile court of Henry VIII, can even the most willful young woman direct her own fate and follow her heart in a world ruled by powerful men?

Clever, headstrong Elizabeth Rose Camperdowne knows her duty. As the sole heiress to an old but impoverished noble family, Eliza must marry a man of wealth and title — it’s the only fate for a girl of her standing. But when a surprising turn of events lands her in the royal court as a maid of honor to Anne of Cleves, Eliza is drawn into the dizzying, dangerous orbit of Henry the Eighth and struggles to distinguish friend from foe. Is her glamorous flirt of a cousin, Katherine Howard, an ally in this deceptive place, or is she Eliza’s worst enemy? And then there’s Ned Barsby, the king’s handsome page, who is entirely unsuitable for Eliza but impossible to ignore. British historian Lucy Worsley provides a vivid, romantic glimpse of the treachery, tragedy, and thrills of life in the Tudor court.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 06 Mar 2017 18:48:00 -0500)

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