Secrets of the Tudor Court

D. L. Bogdan, Author . Kensington $15 (336p) ISBN 978-0-7582-4199-3

In the midst of a nearly inexhaustible supply of Tudor historicals, Bogdan's debut views the troubled court of famously lusty Henry VIII through the eyes of Mary Howard, the daughter of the powerful and fearsome duke of Norfolk, whose resolve to get as close to Henry as possible means offering up his niece Anne Boleyn, moving on to niece Catherine Howard, and then finally Mary. When Mary refuses to give herself over, Norfolk's power slips and Mary's family is ruined. Still, she manages to find happiness, however short-lived, despite the suffocating intrigues of the court and her ever-present abusive and manipulative father. Readers familiar with the Tudor period will find little new save an unusually passive heroine (Mary's relationship with her father is at best abusive and at worst contains tinges of incest) and a tediously drawn-out story. Comparable historicals are rescued by powerful heroines who carry the day. Overall, this is a weak entry in a glutted genre. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/29/2010
Release date: 05/01/2010
Genre: Fiction
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