Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Tudor Queens of England

I should start this with a word of forewarning: I've always enjoyed history as in, I like going to historic sites, I love watching a good battle reenactment, and I squeal with nerdish delight when I get to go through historic towns and houses. But reading history books is not something I usually do. In fact, it's kind of a new thing for me. When I was in school and then college I never really willingly took a history class until I the spring semester before I got my BA. I was trying to make up my schedule for the semester and I only needed one class. Aside from that, I had to pick up two others that would entertain me for the semester and constitute me as a full time student.

I ended up signing up for two different art classes which should have been all I needed but I felt a void so I signed up for a Native American history class. It was at a level most juniors would be taking and I had really no experience with history. Whoops. But I made it through the class and with good grades to boot. I left with my interest in history raised and once I began to experience the need for learning after graduation I didn't just dive into fiction literature but some history books too.

Enter the Tudors. I've always had some bit of a fascination for the Tudors but now that I was actively taking a role in history (by, you know, reading books about these historic events) I began to develop more of a girl crush on the Tudor crowd and that has been pretty prominent for a couple of years now. Queen Elizabeth? Uh, hello, can you be my friend? Anne Boleyn? You're friggen awesome. I'm a complete fangirl.

See? Look at my joy with Queen Elizabeth via the Pennsylvanian Ren Faire! 
(Okay I totally realize that Queen Elizabeth is long dead but I'm a fangirl, okay? It doesn't matter!)

So when I came across this book at Barnes and Noble for a couple of bucks I dove on it. A book? All about the awesome women in the Tudor line? YES PLEASE.

I wasn't really sure what I was expecting. I went into the book hoping to end it with a new found understanding of the Tudors and hopefully to have developed my love for the ladies even more. Well, I can admit this- I did find the book interesting although at times a little confusing (a lot of names were thrown around and I didn't have a clue who they were talking about). But what I found was a developed interest for some queens whom I had never really heard of before. Also, a sympathy for others who previously I just didn't care about. Some questions, some assumptions, were answered and made clear. All in all, it was a quick and informative way to learn about the Tudor queens without extensive research.

From what I've read of other readers there seems to be the general complaint that nothing new or outstanding was mentioned in this book. It's all on a basis of information most Tudor enthusiasts already know and with that it was a boring read for those particular people. But what about the people who have a very limited outline of the Tudor history (IE: me)?  The book was incredibly informational although at times weary because it was such a typical history book. There was a lot of information and not very much flowing descriptive language. Either way, I walked away with more knowledge then I had previous to reading the book and to me that means the book did the job.

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