August 20, 2011

Review : The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

Title : The White Queen
Author : Author
Reading Dates : 2 Jul - 7 Jul 2011
The White Queen: A Novel (The Cousins' War)
The Cousins' War
Books in the series so far:
  • The White Queen
  • The Red Queen
From Amazon :

Book One

Philippa Gregory, "the queen of royal fiction,"*
presents the first of a new series set amid the
deadly feuds of England known as the
Wars of the Roses.

Brother turns on brother to win the ultimate prize, the throne of England, in this dazzling account of the wars of the Plantagenets. They are the claimants and kings who ruled England before the Tudors, and now Philippa Gregory brings them to life through the dramatic and intimate stories of the secret players: the indomitable women, starting with Elizabeth Woodville, the White Queen.

The White Queen tells the story of a woman of extraordinary beauty and ambition who, catching the eye of the newly crowned boy king, marries him in secret and ascends to royalty. While Elizabeth rises to the demands of her exalted position and fights for the success of her family, her two sons become central figures in a mystery that has confounded historians for centuries: the missing princes in the Tower of London whose fate is still unknown. From her uniquely qualified perspective, Philippa Gregory explores this most famous unsolved mystery of English history, informed by impeccable research and framed by her inimitable storytelling skills.

Book Review of The White Queen.
The White Queen was a good read. And since The Queen’s Fool, I’ve thought that I wanted to read more works by Philippa Gregory, even if the endings do leave me feeling a bit depressed at times.

There are a few reasons why I enjoy The White Queen. The primary one being how real the characters in it are. They come alive and history becomes something interesting rather than just mere facts and figures. In reading Elizabeth Woodwille’s story, once again I realize that these historical figures which achieved such great heights were also mere humans as well, fallible and deserving pity as well. Just the facts and figures never really explains the whys and wherefores of a thing; and sometimes it becomes easier to simplify a thing to mere greed and ambition when there could be more.

And that also brings me to the second reason why I enjoyed this. I liked how the author wove the tale of the water goddess Melusina into it. Whether real or not, it certainly had me wondering why the Rivers family really had such a belief with them and whether their futures would be a reflection of Melusina’s tale. If the Woodwille women really could do the things they did, what a weapon of war they’d make ? Of course the tragedy is that they can’t exactly control who suffers from their gifts.

My only quibble with The White Queen was that the story ended before I was ready to let go. Luckily, I have the next book, The Red Queen with me.

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. While I didn't particularly, enjoy the first two books in this series, I did love most of her other books. All the ones on Henry VIII's wives were excellent as were The Earthly Joys series (about the royal gardeners).


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