Review of “The Other Boleyn Girl” – FIVE STARS

 In Mary's Book Reviews

Five Stars for The Other Boleyn Girl 
by Philippa Gregory


“The OtThe Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregoryher Boleyn Girl” by Philippa Gregory had me entranced from the first page to the last! The story is told in the voice of Mary Boleyn, sister to Anne Boleyn who after a tumultuous courtship became the second wife of Henry the VIII of England.

It was more than the story that intrigued me – it was the historical times and how women of nobility were treated as no more than chattel, going to the highest bidder for the benefit of gain in money and lands for the men in the family! Females were literally “pimped” out and when they did as was bidden them, they were called whores, even by the male members of their family who should have been their protectors!

Young Mary Boleyn was married off at the age of 12; however, when King Henry set his eyes on her, the family quickly pushed Mary into being his mistress. After all, if Mary could give the king a son, something his current wife, Katherine couldn’t do, the family might rise even higher – the men, that is. Soon enough, even though Mary did produce a daughter and a son for Henry, he set his eyes on Mary’s sister, Anne, and the family began to see even more opportunity to rise up in the ranks.

I am happy that Mary Boleyn’s life took a turn for the better and that she found true love, as history records. Unfortunately, as most of us are aware, Anne, who eventually did marry the king, met a tragic end when she couldn’t produce a male heir. Henry’s eyes turned again to yet another young woman and things were fabricated/or not – depending on the historical records – against Anne and she was beheaded! However, I guess in some ways, the last laugh might have been on Henry, for it was his and Anne’s daughter, Elizabeth, who became one of the greatest queens (according to history) that England ever had!

This novel – historical fiction – is well worth the read – savour each chapter as Mary Boleyn relates to you the story of her life at the English court of King Henry VIII!

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