August 24, 2011

Review : The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory

Title : The Red Queen
Author : Author
Reading Dates : 7 Jul - 15 Jul 2011
The Red Queen: A Novel (The Cousin's War)
The Cousins' War
Books in the series so far:
  • The White Queen
  • The Red Queen
From goodreads :
The second book in Philippa's stunning new trilogy, The Cousins War, brings to life the story of Margaret Beaufort, a shadowy and mysterious character in the first book of the series - The White Queen - but who now takes centre stage in the bitter struggle of The War of the Roses. The Red Queen tells the story of the child-bride of Edmund Tudor, who, although widowed in her early teens, uses her determination of character and wily plotting to infiltrate the house of York under the guise of loyal friend and servant, undermine the support for Richard III and ultimately ensure that her only son, Henry Tudor, triumphs as King of England. Through collaboration with the dowager Queen Elizabeth Woodville, Margaret agrees a betrothal between Henry and Elizabeth's daughter, thereby uniting the families and resolving the Cousins War once and for all by founding of the Tudor dynasty.

Book Review of The Red Queen.
The Red Queen offers a different perspective of The Cousins’ War, one seen from the The White Queen’s enemy’s side. Normally, that would put me in the corner of the The Red Queen. Instead, I find that seeing things from Margaret Beaufort’s side, makes me root for the Rivers and the Yorkists more.

Margaret is pitiful. I can’t sympathize with or like her, but I do pity her greatly. The Margaret Beaufort in The Red Queen, no matter how many years pass, strikes me as nothing more than a pitiful child. One who hits out due to envy and spite because she is never given the attention and love she wants. And the root of her piety is simply her wish to believe herself special. And that is why I find that she is someone to be pitied rather than admired or feared.

That is also one of the reasons why I find myself sympathizing more with the Yorkist cause in this book. Another reason are the opinions voiced by Margaret’s second husband. Margaret’s and Sir Henry’s opposing thoughts on who they should support and why are interesting. If Sir Henry truly thought as he did in this book, than I would think that is something unique to the times because his reasons for supporting the king he chooses are not based on self-interest or lineage.

The Red Queen also gave me a thirst to know more about the Princess Elizabeth. Her few appearances certainly shows a young woman of courage, intelligence and charm. And I can’t help but wonder if she is truly as fearless as she appears and how she will deal with the aftermath of the York’s loss.

The Red Queen has me hankering for the next book in the series now. I can’t wait to read The White Princess’ story.

My conclusions :
  • Would I re-read the book ? Yes.
  • Would I want to read the next book in the series ? Yes.
  • Would I want to own my personal copy if I didn’t already own it ? Maybe, I'm reserving judgement until I finish the series.
  • Who would I recommend this too? Historical fiction fans.
  • For those looking to read the book, would I recommend buying or borrowing the book? I'm reserving judgement until I finish the series.

1 comment:

  1. I so need to read some more PG--I haven't read a book by her in forever!


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