Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Katie’s #CBR4 Review #40: Six Wives by David Starkey

Title: Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII
Author: David Starkey
Source: library
Fun Fact: The fates of Henry VIII’s wives were the following: divorced, beheaded, died in child birth, divorced, beheaded, and out-lived him (but probably would otherwise have been beheaded).
Rating: ★★★★★
Review Summary: Clear, well written, engaging without being overly dramatic, obviously well researched, and a lot of fun to read.

This book was really everything I look for in a non-fiction book about history. It was so engagingly written that it could have been non-fiction, but sources were all cited and deviations from accepted wisdom among Henry VIII scholars were mentioned. The story was presented chronologically, with a few, well integrated digressions to give us the history of each of Henry’s wives. Chapters were short and the introduction of new characters was kept to a minimum, creating a very lucid narrative. New characters were always given context, both in the writing and by some great family trees, and we were often reminded who recurring characters were. This made the massive amounts of information in this 880 page book fairly manageable.

Read more at Doing Dewey.

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5 thoughts on “Katie’s #CBR4 Review #40: Six Wives by David Starkey

  1. I think I shold apss this on to my mother. She has a Henry VIII coffee mug (okay, I gave it to her) on which the wives disappear when you add hot water. We both find it hysterical. Oddly coincidental is the fact that last night we were explaining “divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded,survived” to Little Julien.

    • Haha, that sounds awesome! I thought the fact that there was a pattern was interesting. It makes me feel even more like his later wives should have seen that things could only end badly!

      • It certainly confirms the tenuous and powerless position of women in the society.

        Mr. Julien used the term “murderer” several times in his explanation to Little Julien and there were some appropriately harsh words about the Anglican church as well. The Dowager Julien is Anglican clergy.

  2. I loved this one too! Glad I’m not alone 🙂

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