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The Lady Elizabeth by Alison Weir

The Lady Elizabeth

by Alison Weir

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1,495587,742 (3.87)75
A vivid fictional portrait of the tumultuous early life of Queen Elizabeth I describes her perilous path to the throne of England and the scandal, political intrigues, and religious turmoil she confronted along the way, from the deaths of her parents, Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII, to the fanaticism of her sister, Mary I.… (more)

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Interesting book. I am a big fan of Alison Weir's non-fiction, and Elizabeth I is probably my favorite historical person. This book was well written and easy to read, without being condescending. I did enjoy her foray into the 'what if' world concerning the episode with Thomas Seymour. We will never know for certain all that did-or did not-occur. This book would certainly be a good place for a newcomer to Elizabeth, to start. ( )
  a1stitcher | Jun 22, 2019 |
What can possibly be left to say about Queen Elizabeth I that hasn't already be said? For the fervent fan of the monarch, about all that is left is for the author to handle the story skillfully, or to attempt to find an unexplored viewpoint.

Weir has chosen the former here, and does a fine job of inhabiting both the world and the mind of the young Elizabeth, from the death of Ann Boleyn to the death of Queen Mary Tudor. The historical material is presented, along with fictional speculation about Elizabeth's relationship with her stepfather, Thomas Seymour, and the princess / lady / princess / heir-to-the-crown's internal struggles with the notion of marriage. Or not.

The thing one takes away, always, from well-told history (or historical fiction) about this remarkable woman, is how well she played a very real -- and very dangerous -- Game of Thrones, and did so from the moment of Henry VIII's death, when she was but fourteen years old.

'The Lady Elizabeth' would be a fine introduction into historical fiction of the Tudor era, and an enjoyable interlude for readers already familiar with the story. ( )
  LyndaInOregon | Apr 18, 2019 |
Reading Alison Weir's fiction is like eating a candy bar. You know it can't be good for you because it is so full of fat, calories and artificial ingredients, but it is so yummy and delicious that you can't help yourself. ( )
  kateschmidt | Oct 20, 2018 |
This fictional account covers Elizabeth I’s life from the time her mother, Anne Boleyn, is killed up to when she becomes queen.

I do like Alison Weir. This may be the highest I've rated a book about Elizabeth I; I usually don't find her quite as interesting as some of the other Tudors. Surprisingly enough, historian Weir does admit (in a Q&A at the end) to taking a big step away from what she believes really happened in one part of the book, but she said she was enjoying the liberty of it being fiction and decided to go with - what if...? I don’t think that “what if” pushed the book to 4 stars for me, though. The book was already there and remained there throughout. I’ve been meaning to read this for years and I’m glad I finally have! For those who want more factual historical fiction, this may not be the one for you, but I really liked this one! ( )
  LibraryCin | Oct 17, 2016 |
This was a fabulous novel about an intriguing woman. Loved it. ( )
  HeatherLINC | Jul 4, 2016 |
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To my dear friends
Tracy Borman,
Sarah Gristwood,
Kate Williams,
Martha Whittome,
Ann Morrice,
Siobhan Clarke
for all their help and support,
with much love.
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On a hot, still morning in July, the Lady Mary, daughter to King Henry the Eighth, arrived at the great country palace of Hatfield, trotting into the courtyard on a white palfrey followed by four gentlemen, two ladies-in-waiting, and a female fool.
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A vivid fictional portrait of the tumultuous early life of Queen Elizabeth I describes her perilous path to the throne of England and the scandal, political intrigues, and religious turmoil she confronted along the way, from the deaths of her parents, Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII, to the fanaticism of her sister, Mary I.

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Following the tremendous success of her first novel, Innocent Traitor, which recounted the riveting tale of the doomed Lady Jane Grey, acclaimed historian and New York Times bestselling author Alison Weir turns her masterly storytelling skills to the early life of young Elizabeth Tudor, who would grow up to become England’s most intriguing and powerful queen.

Even at age two, Elizabeth is keenly aware that people in the court of her father, King Henry VIII, have stopped referring to her as “Lady Princess” and now call her “the Lady Elizabeth.” Before she is three, she learns of the tragic fate that has befallen her mother, the enigmatic and seductive Anne Boleyn, and that she herself has been declared illegitimate, an injustice that will haunt her.

What comes next is a succession of stepmothers, bringing with them glimpses of love, fleeting security, tempestuous conflict, and tragedy. The death of her father puts the teenage Elizabeth in greater peril, leaving her at the mercy of ambitious and unscrupulous men. Like her mother two decades earlier she is imprisoned in the Tower of London–and fears she will also meet her mother’s grisly end. Power-driven politics, private scandal and public gossip, a disputed succession, and the grievous example of her sister, “Bloody” Queen Mary, all cement Elizabeth’s resolve in matters of statecraft and love, and set the stage for her transformation into the iconic Virgin Queen.

Alison Weir uses her deft talents as historian and novelist to exquisitely and suspensefully play out the conflicts between family, politics, religion, and conscience that came to define an age. Sweeping in scope, The Lady Elizabeth is a fascinating portrayal of a woman far ahead of her time–an orphaned girl haunted by the shadow of the axe, an independent spirit who must use her cunning and wits for her very survival, and a future queen whose dangerous and dramatic path to the throne shapes her future greatness.
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