Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory

From the author's website: Into a Tudor court on the brink of treason comes Hannah, a young Jewish girl on the run from the Inquisition. Sworn into the service of a handsome Robert Dudley, he sends her as a Holy Fool to spy on Princess Mary Tudor, the forgotten heir to King Edward’s throne. Instead of the tyrant of popular legend, Hannah finds a woman waiting for her chance and only wanting the best for the kingdom – while her sister Elizabeth waits to take advantage of any mistakes, and longs for her death.

Everyone tells me that The Other Boleyn Girl is Philippa Gregory's best book but I seem to be reading all her others first - is it my being stubborn or maybe saving the best for last? I enjoyed The Queen's Fool. The romance went back and forth so many times - who would she pick, the arranged marriage or the rogue in the Tower? That kept it interesting. I liked all the shenanigans of the royals - life at court is fascinating. I would have liked to learn a little more about the experience of being Jewish at this time in history. So many of the books I have read focus on the Catholic versus Protestant conflict but this was the first I've read that had a Jewish family. All in all, a pleasant enough read - not a "couldn't put it down, stayed up all night to finish book" but enjoyable.

This book also counts toward the Year of the Historical 2010 Reading Challenge hosted by lurv a la mode. Click on the button to see my progress.


bermudaonion said...

One of my neighbors loves Gregory's work and just insists that I have to try it. One of these days, I'm going to break down and do it.

Jenny said...

Of Gregory's latest books, this one is the one that held my attention the least. I did like Hannah the Fool, as a character, but the story just didn't hold my interest like the others. My favorite by far is The Constant Princess.