Shorter than "The Queen's Bastard", this work about Elizabeth's early teen years is nevertheless an important component of the trilogy. It is striking in its depiction of the way royal children were manipulated and betrayed by those who were supposed to be mentoring and caring for them. No wonder so many of them turned out rotten!
At first this was a little bit like reading a history lesson, but as the story progressed the plot picked up quite a bit. There's a definite young adult quality in that the good guys are good and the bad guys are bad, with very little ambiguity or question. I was really into it by the end, and a lot of what was going on was new to me. Maxwell's got a point - how is it that this whole time period in the life of one of history's most famous queens is never mentioned? That's very strange, especially considering how much it may have influenced some of her later decisions in life, such as never marrying.
I was glad there was a brief afterward by the author discussing how much of the story was solidly based on history, and how much was artistic license.
Overall, good story, and I learned a few things too!
Fictional account of Elizabeth I as a teenager princess in constant danger due to among other things, her liason with Thomas Seymour, her step mother's husband. Robin Maxwell wrote the Secret Diary of Ann Boleyn and The Queen's Bastard. If you enjoyed those, this one won't dissapoint.
I couldn't even finish it, especially after reading Margaret George's splendid "Autobiography of Henry VIII," and I'm not going to bother reading any of Maxwell's other novels. For good historial fiction with romance, I recommend Philippa Gregory. For GREAT historical fiction, I recommend Margaret George.
Wonderful book! Great writing. And wonderful story telling. It wasn't until I was almost done with this one that I found out it had two books before it.But that was still okay. This book stands alone perfect well for a Tudor fan.A wonderful story of the turmoil of young Elizabeth's life. I highly recommend this one.