Anne Boleyn, A King’s Obsession: A Novel
If, as Shakespeare once said, “There is no new thing under the sun,” what could possibly be added to the already immense body of work focused on Anne Boleyn? Believe it or not, Alison Weir has managed to do just that.
In Anne Boleyn: A King’s Obsession, Weir takes a fresh look at Henry VIII’s much-maligned second wife by considering such things as the effect of Anne’s humanist education and of the time she spent with women such as Madame Marguerite, the King of France’s sister, in her household.
Considering Anne’s upbringing in a number of wealthy households, her own father’s not excluded, it is not difficult to imagine her being influenced greatly by the Querelle des Femmes and the writings of Christine de Pizan and by those women she spent time with during her formative years who were strong advocates of feminine equality. She also had advanced ideas about religion and shared them with Henry, which eventually helped to shape his idea of Reformation.
Though the Anne Boleyn story may seem “done to death,” Weir has found a way to make this much-maligned queen seem more sympathetic and much more human. I look forward to Weir’s other novels on Henry’s other queens.
Chris Hayden has been working at City Book Review since 2012, so that makes him the keeper of knowledge. He manages the office and book reviewers (all 200 of them!), which is no small feat. If you’re looking at the book reviews here, you’re seeing them because he sent the books out for review. Without him, this place would fall apart, because no one else in the office knows how to use the postage machine. Two words: job security.
|Page Count||560 pages|
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