books

Constant Princess / Other Boleyn Girl

The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory was published 2005.

A highly fictionalized version of the life of Catherine of Aragon and her rise to power in England.

Catherine was the first wife of Henry VIII, divorced after 20 years of marriage. Daughter of Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon.

My fear is that history is boring. That royal intrigues are boring.

Not so in the case of this book. It’s very fast paced. Most entertaining.

It’s part of what the author calls the The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels.

Though Philippa has a PhD in history, another of her books seemed to me more Romance / Bodice ripper.

The Other Boleyn Girl (2001) was not as good, IMHO.

But the plot still fascinates. Instead of focusing on the 2nd wife of Henry VIII — Anne Boleyn — the lead character is her younger sister — Mary Boleyn.

The other Boleyn girl.

In fact, Mary was the king’s mistress while Catherine was his wife. Though little of accuracy is known about Mary, she did have a roller coaster of a life. Mary died aged 43–44.

King Henry had Anne beheaded at the Tower of London at age 28–35.

In any case, if you like historical fiction — check out Philippa Gregory.

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