Book Reviews of The Life of Elizabeth I

The Life of Elizabeth I
The Life of Elizabeth I
Author: Alison Weir
ISBN-13: 9780345405333
ISBN-10: 0345405331
Publication Date: 9/1998
Pages: 532
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.

4.1 stars, based on 17 ratings
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

10 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 74 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
A nice overview of Elizabeth's life. If you've read another book about the life of Elizabeth, there really isn't any need to read this one, as Weir has very little new to say about her. But if the topic isn't one you've read about, this could be a good first look at Elizabeth's life.

If you are familiar with Elizabeth already, the biography by J.E. Neale or Anne Somerset would be more interesting and informative.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 75 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Loved, loved, loved it! Took me a WEEK to read, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Not as breezy as David Starkey (who I am now reading), but quite a thorough examination. Will definitely read more by Ms. Weir.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
As a historian and avid reader, I found this volume to be a jewel. Elizabeth Tudor has been written about to the point of being overdone but Weir's biographical account is refreshing in the face of so much redundant scholarship. This reads like a novel but Weir manages to maintain excellent standards of accuracy. This book is great.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 33 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The long life and powerful personality of England's beloved Virgin Queen have eternal appeal, and popular historian Alison Weir depicts both with panache. She's especially good at evoking the physical texture of Tudor England: the elaborate royal gowns (actually an intricate assembly of separate fabric panels buttoned together over linen shifts), the luxurious but unhygienic palaces (Elizabeth got the only "close stool"; most members of her retinue relieved themselves in the courtyards), the huge meals heavily seasoned to disguise the taste of spoiled meat. Against this earthy backdrop, Elizabeth's intelligence and formidable political skills stand in vivid relief. She may have been autocratic, devious, even deceptive, but these traits were required to perform a 45-year tightrope walk between the two great powers of Europe, France and Spain. Both countries were eager to bring small, weak England under their sway and to safely marry off its inconveniently independent queen. Weir emphasizes Elizabeth's precarious position as a ruling woman in a man's world, suggesting plausibly that the single life was personally appealing as well as politically expedient for someone who had seen many ambitious ladies--including her own mother--ruined and even executed for just the appearance of sexual indiscretions. The author's evaluations of such key figures in Elizabeth's reign as the Earl of Leicester (arguably the only man she ever loved) and William Cecil (her most trusted adviser) are equally cogent and respectful of psychological complexity. Weir does a fine job of retelling this always-popular story for a new generation.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 40 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I love this author, and I find her books to be well researched. Her writing is very engaging.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This was a very good book, a little slow at times, but overall very interesting.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 60 more book reviews
An in depth and fascinating study of Elizabeth I. Her story is told in a extraordidnary fashion and shows in-depth research.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 6000 more book reviews
Well, she spends a lot of print talking about what outfits Elizabeth wore. She starts right in with her coronation, not much on her childhood.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 3 more book reviews
A very good book. Well written.
reviewed The Life of Elizabeth I on + 52 more book reviews
I got this book from a co-worker and initially wanted to read it because I loved the movie "Elizabeth" and find her story fascinating, but it seems I can never quite get to reading it so I wanted to make it available to someone else who might be interested.