CDs: 15 (18 hours)
Narrators: Bianca Amato, Dagmara Dominczyk, and Ruthie Henshall
This book, The Boleyn Inheritance, tells the story of Jane Boleyn, Anne of Cleaves and Katherine Howard. Jane is the wife of George Boleyn who was brother to Anne, Henry’s second wife. Jane has the distinction of being a lady in the courts of the two Queen Anne’s as well as Queen Katherine. Anne of Cleaves was Henry’s 4th wife…an arranged marriage with a foreign princess to secure an alliance against enemies of England. There was no love between Anne of Cleaves and Henry and this marriage was very short lived. Katherine Howard was a cousin to Anne Boleyn and Henry’s 5th wife. She was young and the pawn in her families political games.
I listened to this book in its audio form which had three narrators read the parts of the three central characters. The narrative flits back and forth between the three women and the narrators really breath life into each of them. This book brought me back to the love that I felt after reading the first book. I was absorbed in this story from get go and was a little disappointed when it was over. I’m not sure if it was the fact that I listened to this book rather than read it but I was enthralled. I really felt that I had been transported back in time and was wandering the halls of Hampton Court following the paths of Henry VIII and those of his court. My heart broke for Anne when she realized that her marriage was over and she had two choices: accept a divorce and become ‘sister’ to the king or risk her life by fighting for the man she’d come to care for. I was annoyed by Katherine….she was young and immature and Gregory and the narrator really brought that aspect to life in her character. And then there was Jane…the long suffering Jane who was looking for security in an insecure world.
If you liked The Other Boleyn Girl but maybe felt so-so about the other books then you might be interested in this book. The Boleyn Inheritance is a return to all those things that made that first book so wonderful. Next month Gregory has a new book coming out called The Other Queen. This book will tell the story of Mary, Queen of Scots…and if that book is anything like this one then it will be a book to look forward to.