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The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

The White Queen (edition 2010)

by Philippa Gregory

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2,8261532,058 (3.58)152
Title:The White Queen
Authors:Philippa Gregory
Info:Touchstone/Simon & Schuster (2010), Edition: 1ST, Paperback, 400 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

  1. 60
    The Sunne in Splendour by Sharon Kay Penman (DevourerOfBooks, kraaivrouw)
    DevourerOfBooks: Perhaps the best historical fiction on The War of the Roses.
    kraaivrouw: This is the one to read about the War of the Roses.
  2. 30
    Katherine by Anya Seton (cyderry)
    cyderry: this book explains how the Yorkist/Lancaster line split occurred.
  3. 30
    The King's Grey Mare by Rosemary Hawley Jarman (Sakerfalcon, tina1969)
    Sakerfalcon: Another novel focusing on Elizabeth Woodville.
  4. 41
    The Princes in the Tower by Alison Weir (ddelmoni)
    ddelmoni: Non-fiction
  5. 20
    The Three Edwards by Thomas B. Costain (cyderry)
  6. 20
    The Last Plantagenets by Thomas B. Costain (cyderry)
  7. 10
    The Pleasure Palace by Kate Emerson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Both lushly descriptive, compelling historical fiction series take place in Tudor-era England. Strong, well-developed female protagonists anchor these character-driven stories full of romantic drama, royal intrigue, and evocative period atmosphere.… (more)
  8. 10
    Figures in Silk by Vanora Bennett (joririchardson)
  9. 21
    The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory (tesskrose)

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The White Queen by Philippa Gregory; (4*)

This is a wonderful historical account laced with fiction provided by the author. A story that is quite believable of the times of the Lancaster and York families in 1400s England.

This story of Elizabeth Woodville, who marries King Edward and becomes Queen of England is a most fascinating study of medieval England. The novel is scattered with moments of laughter, joy, terror, horror, revulsion and even/especially heart breaking sadness.

What a great way to be entertained and at the same time pick up a fairly accurate flow of the history of the day. Within this story the good guys are obvious. The bad guys are clearly bad. The action flows when it should and slows down at just the right moments.

A very nice way to learn of far ago times without actually reading a textbook. I would recommend this book for those interested in the history of the times.

I have read much on the Tudor lines but not the Lancaster/York lines so I quite enjoyed this book. ( )
  rainpebble | Nov 4, 2015 |
La Regina della Rosa Bianca è il primo libro della saga sulla Guerra delle Due Rose.
Questo libro è, insieme a "Caterina, la prima moglie", il mio preferito.
La storia comincia quando Elizabeth Woodville incontra - in modo apparentemente casuale - il nuovo re, Edoardo IV di York, sul ciglio della strada. La giovane donna è vedova, con due figli a carico e soprattutto Lancaster.
Sfruttando la sua bellezza, spinge il re ad aiutarla a riottenere l'eredità dei figli. La vicenda dovrebbe concludersi lì, ma l'attrazione tra i due è incredibile e il desiderio di rivedersi sconfigge l'orgoglio. Decisa a non concedersi a lui per non disonorare la famiglia, Elizabeth riesce a diventare Regina d'Inghilterra. Un matrimonio che mette al primo posto l'amore incondizionato, che non vacillerà mai, nonostante le scappatelle del marito(normali per l'epoca) e i lunghi periodi di lontananza causati dalla costante guerra che caratterizza il regno di Edoardo IV. Tra tutto questo, congiure e tradimenti, inganni, voltafaccia eclatanti, morti misteriose, l'elemento magico che non manca mai e ipotesi azzardate dalla scrittrice. Philippa Gregory con questo libro si è superata. Io l'ho amato, e consiglio a tutti di leggerlo: illumina un periodo di storia che a scuola non t'insegnano, forse ti nominano la guerra e il vincitore, ma di Edoardo IV non fanno parola.
Edoardo è il perfetto cavaliere: forte, deciso, coraggioso e militare. Ma ha anche un amore smisurato per sua moglie e per i suoi figli, per il suo regno. Conoscerà la sconfitta, la paura, e con Elizabeth riuscirà ad affrontarla.
Quando sono soli, Edoardo ed Elizabeth non sono Re e Regina, sono solo un uomo e una donna che si amano.
In definitiva, leggetelo e amatelo. Non ve ne pentirete. ( )
  SaraOrwell | Oct 16, 2015 |
Firstly, I want to say that writing a book is hard work. Gregory has obviously spent time on her research, and presumably put a lot of effort into writing this book so congratulations to her.

I did really want to like it. I love history and, as a matter of fact, this period in particular. Also, many of my friends have recommended Philippa Gregory to me.

Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this book.

To be frank, I can't believe it has so many good reviews.

The writing is repetitive and clumsy (and a perfect example of telling instead of showing...)
She says a sentence. Then rephrases it. And in case we haven't got the message, repeats it a third time.

Why did she decide to use first person narrative? If it had been used differently, it could have worked really well . As it is, Elizabeth's thoughts and feelings are used as a convenient method of shoving the plot down the readers' throats.

I can tell she did research, but I feel like she only used the bits that suited her purposes. At heart, the story felt extremely biased. In particular, the portrayal of Richard III - so unjust! Just because his reputation was ruined (primarily by Tudor propaganda) doesn't mean people should take rumours as facts

The dialogue is unnatural and stilted - presumable she's aiming for a style of the period, what the reader really get is a stiff and stuttering mess.
Oh, and the author also shoved a few third person chapters in for the times when Elizabeth wasn't in the scene. It's an ungainly change and a lazy tool.

All in all, I suppose I can understand why some people may like it, but I certainly don't recommend it to anyone. If you're interested in the time period, there are plenty of other books you could read instead.

Also, for anyone who's interested in Richard III, I strongly recommend 'Daughter of Time'! ( )
2 vote Gorthalon | Dec 7, 2014 |
This was a really great book. My favorite in the Cousins' War series. Gregory did a great job writing this and has made me come to love Queen Elizabeth Woodville. I know a lot of historians dislike Elizabeth, and I honestly don't know why. Gregory's telling of Elizabeth's life with King Edward was fantastically done and I loved the myth of Melusina that was told throughout the book. I'm really looking forward to reading the White Princess now. ( )
  rabidmunkee | Nov 7, 2014 |
Those who enjoyed The Other Bolyn Girl (also by Gregory), will likely enjoy this first installment in The Cousins' War trilogy. Aside from the pieces of history told here (with scandal and rumors driving much of the action of the story), I personally found the transformation of the main character to be the high point of this novel. Elizabeth Woodville begins as a commoner thoroughly set on protecting her family and their future. By the end of the book, she has transformed into a power-thirsty queen who, although still very protective of (and in love with) her children, finds herself having to choose between them and her families happiness. ( )
  HeatherCHoffman | Nov 5, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 151 (next | show all)
[A] highly professional, highly enjoyable novel: stylistically plain, rhetorically straightforward, infinitely more interested in drawing readers into the life and immediacy of history than in pedantically mimicking period idioms.
Gregory's exhaustive research, lush detail and deft storytelling are all in top form here, making The White Queen both mesmerizing and historically rich.
added by Shortride | editPeople, Joanna Powell (Aug 24, 2009)

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Philippa Gregoryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cottenden, JeffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, YuanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Li, CherlynneCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lyons, SusanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In the darkness of the forest the young knight could hear the splashing of the fountain long before he could see the glimmer of moonlight reflected on the still surface. He was about to step forward, longing to dip his head, drink in the coolness, when he caught his breath at the sight of something dark, moving deep in the water. There was a greenish shadow in the sunken bowl of the fountain, something like a great fish, something like a drowned body. Then it moved and stood upright and he saw, frighteningly naked: a bathing woman. Her skin as she rose up, water coursing down her flanks, was even paler than the white marble bowl, her wet hair dark as a shadow.
She is Melusina, the water goddess, and she is found in hidden springs and waterfalls in any forest in Christendom, even in those as far away as Greece. She bathes in the Moorish fountains too. They know her by another name in the northern countries, where the lakes are glazed with ice and it crackles when she rises. A man may love her if he keeps her secret and lets her alone when she wants to bathe, and she may love him in return until he breaks his word, as men always do, and she sweeps him into the deeps, with her fishy tail, and turns his faithless blood to water.

The tragedy of Melusina, whatever language tells it, whatever tune it sings, is that a man will always promise more than he can do to a woman he cannot understand.

Richard on my other side kneels too and mutters, as if he cannot be heard, "Is this the king? Really? He is the tallest man I have ever seen in my life!"

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Book description
Brother turns on brother to win the ultimate prize, the throne, in this dazzling account of the wars of the Plantagenets. They ruled before the Tudors, and now Philippa Gregory brings them to life through the dramatic and intimate stories of the secret players: the indomitable women.

The White Queen tells the story of Elizabeth Woodville, a woman of extraordinary beauty and ambition, who secretly marries the newly crowned boy king. While Elizabeth rises to the demands of her exalted position and fights for the success of her family, her two sons become the central figures in a famous unsolved mystery that has confounded historians for centuries: the lost princes in the Tower of London.
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In this account of the wars of the Plantagenets, a woman of extraordinary beauty and ambition, Elizabeth Woodville, catches the eye of the newly crowned boy king, marries him in secret and ascends to royalty. While Elizabeth rises to the demands of her exalted position and fights for the success of her family, her two sons become central figures in a mystery that has confounded historians for centuries: the missing princes in the Tower of London whose fate is still unknown.… (more)

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