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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Review: The Queen's Lady by Barbara Kyle

Title: The Queen's Lady
Author:  Barbara Kyle
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Kensington
Publish Date: 1994
Source: I received a copy from the publisher; however, this did not affect my review.

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You're a historical fiction fan.
What's the Story?:

From "London, 1527. Marry or serve: for Honor Larke, the choice is clear. Unwilling to perish of boredom as an obedient wife, she leaves the home of her guardian, the brilliant Sir Thomas More, to attend Her Majesty, Queen Catherine of Aragon. But life at Henry VIII's court holds more than artifice for an intelligent observer, and Honor knows how to watch--and when to act... 

 Angered by the humiliation heaped upon her mistress as Henry cavorts with Anne Boleyn and presses Rome for a divorce, Honor volunteers to carry letters to the Queen's allies. It's a risky game, but Honor is sure she's playing it well--until she's proven wrong. Richard Thornleigh may cut a dashing figure at court, but Honor isn't taken in by his reckless charm. Only later does Honor realize that Richard has awakened something within her--and that he, too, has something to hide...

For the King's actions are merely one knot in a twisted web that stretches across Europe, ensnaring everyone from the lowliest of peasants to the most powerful of nobles. Swept away in a tide of intrigue and danger, the Queen's lady is about to learn everything: about pride, passion, greed--and the conscience of the king..."

My Two Cents: 

Oh Tudor England, how I heart you! I always think that I'm going to get sick of Tudor England and because of books like The Queen's Lady, I have not hit that point yet. This book takes place just as good ol' Henry the VIII is tiring of Catherine of Aragon and wants to marry the infamous Anne Boleyn. Honor, the main character in this book, is the fictional ward of Sir Thomas More who becomes one of Catherine's loyal confidantes and is charged with taking secret correspondence from Catherine out of England as well as getting some others out of the country as well once Catherine's place at court is unassured.

I really liked Honor. I typically like my historical fiction to be about real people so I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about the book since Honor was a fictional character. She won me over though. She's a really strong character who is willing to take a lot of risks in order to crusade for what she believes in. You definitely have to appreciate that about her.

There is a lot of good historical detail in the book. I liked the discussions about the changing religion in England at the time. You get a lot of insight into Henry VIII's decision to break away from the Catholic church.

There were a couple things that I didn't care for. This is a fairly long book (500+) pages and sometimes it felt like it kind of got bogged down in detail. I felt like some of it could have been cut out. I also didn't care for some of the timing in the book. Each section of the book had a time period but each chapter did not so it was sort of hard to follow how much time had passed between different events in the book.

Bottom line: Overall, this is a very interesting story about Tudor England.



  1. Love historical fiction!Sounds like it is worth a read. Thank you!

  2. I never get tired of reading about Tudor England. This one looks good though I am put off a bit by the length. Thanks for the great review!

  3. Anything historical fiction is fine by me.

  4. Oh, this one sounds really good! A different perspective would be really fun to read. I love Tudor England.

  5. Thanks for this, Meg. It's great to see your readers' comments about how much they love novels set in Tudor England. And I'm so pleased you liked Honor Larke - she's one of my favorite heroines!

  6. Oooh, I love Tudor England, too -- and I'm interested to pick this one up!


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