Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

Basic plot

Widowed with 2 young sons, Elizabeth Woodville, uses her beauty and cunning to provide for her family and ensure their future. What better way to do so than to marry the King of England. The young King Edward IV, completely enchanted with her beauty takes her as his bride and queen. Elizabeth soon finds out that life as royalty is not simply about the splendours of English court, especially during the tumultuous time of the War of the Roses. Where cousins fought cousins and brother turned on brother to have a claim to the throne. With her family now in constant danger, Elizabeth may pay the ultimate price for her crown.

What I liked about this book

I have always been a fan of historical fiction and ever since reading The Other Boleyn Girl and The Other Queen, I have enjoyed Ms Gregory's style of writing. I concede that she strays far from the actual historical facts but this artistic allowance in my opinion certainly makes for an enjoyable read. Elizabeth's rise from commoner to queen was almost fairy-tale like in quality, and the love between her and the king was realistically portrayed. Certainly the first half of the book was very well told.

What I disliked about this book

After a while, the book began to drag as plot after plot to topple the king was uncovered. Betrayal after betrayal, until it got to a point that I just wanted the story to end one way or the other. What made it even more tiresome was remembering the minor characters  as they all seemed to be called Robert, Richard or George albeit with different titles. In having to follow the timeline of history, the book turned into a series of events instead of remaining as captivating a story as it was at the beginning.

A quote I liked from this book

I would give all that I am, to be, just this once, simply irresistible.
Rating: 3.5/5



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