Her Highness, the Traitor

Susan Higginbotham, Author
Susan Higginbotham. Sourcebooks, $14.99 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-1-4022-6558-7
Reviewed on: 04/09/2012
Release date: 06/01/2012
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Through women’s eyes, Higginbotham (The Queen of Last Hopes) attempts to bring to life England’s interregnal period between the death of Henry VIII and the ascension of Elizabeth I in this dull Tudor historical. Edward succeeds his late father, but given his young age, dominion over the kingdom is conferred upon a royal council, whereupon various men begin jockeying for power. Jane Dudley’s husband, the duke of Northumberland, ingratiates himself to the king, and becomes a trusted adviser. Meanwhile, Frances Grey and daughter Jane watch as Frances’s husband, the duke of Suffolk, positions himself to claim the throne. Hoping to ease tensions between the two families, Jane Dudley’s son marries Jane Grey. Shortly before Edward succumbs to tuberculosis, he appoints Jane Grey as his successor. However, when Edward’s half-sister Mary comes to the fore as a contender for the crown—with the support of the royal council—the Dudleys and Greys stand to lose everything, including their lives. Though Higginbotham stays true to history, her inability to create compelling characters makes her effort light on drama and difficult to follow. Agent: Nicholas Croce, the Croce Agency. (June)
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