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A compelling story of the last days of one of history's most charismatic, controversial and tragic heroines - Anne Boleyn.
Alison Weir is one of Britain's top-selling historians. She is the author of numerous works of history and historical fiction, specialising in the medieval and Tudor periods. Her bestselling history books include The Six Wives of Henry VIII, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Elizabeth of York and, most recently, The Lost Tudor Princess. Her novels include Innocent Traitor, Katherine of Aragon: The True Queen and Anne Boleyn: A King's Obsession. She is an Honorary Life Patron of Historic Royal Palaces. She is married with two adult children and lives and works in Surrey.
Premier popular historian Weir (Mistress of the Monarchy: The Life of Katherine Swynford, Duchess of Lancaster) delivers a most impressively researched book about the last days of Anne Boleyn. Imprisoned, tried for treason (she was accused of adultery, incest, and plotting to murder the king), and beheaded, Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII of England, lived an ultimately tragic life that has continued to fascinate people for centuries. Weir examines Boleyn's last few months in depth by concentrating primarily on contemporary primary sources. Referring first to them and then to other historians' research, Weir is able to offer a fresh perspective on the end of Anne Boleyn's life, dispelling long-held facts as myths, refuting some theories of modern historians, and even correcting some of her own previous research. What emerges is the most complete and compelling portrait available of Anne Boleyn in her last days. Weir's impeccable research and gift for storytelling help readers understand the fall of one of the most influential queens in English history and the world of Tudor England. VERDICT A superb example of a nonfiction page-turner that history lovers cannot afford to miss.-Troy Reed, Southeast Reg. Lib., Gilbert, AZ Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Rejecting as myth that Henry VIII, desirous of a son and a new queen, asked his principal adviser Thomas Cromwell to find criminal grounds for executing Anne Boleyn, the prolific British historian Weir (The Six Wives of Henry VIII) concludes that Cromwell himself, seeing Anne as a political rival, instigated "one of the most astonishing and brutal coups in English history," skillfully framing her and destroying her faction. Ably weighing the reliability of contemporary sources and theories of other historians, Weir also claims that though perhaps sexually experienced, Anne was technically a virgin before sleeping with Henry. Anne was also, Weir posits, a passionate radical evangelical, with considerable influence over Henry regarding Church reform. Weir wonders if Anne's childbearing history points to her being Rh negative and thus incapable of bearing a second living child. Dissecting four of the most momentous months in world history and providing an eminently judicious, thorough and absorbing popular history, Weir nimbly sifts through a mountain of historical research, allowing readers to come to their own conclusions about Henry's doomed second queen. 15 pages of color photos. (Dec.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"One of our best popular historians...with an impressive scholarly pedigree in Tudor history" * Independent on Sunday * "It is testament to Weir's artfulness and elegance as a writer that The Lady in the Tower remains fresh and suspenseful, even though the reader knows what's coming... One of the pleasures of The Lady in the Tower is that it invites the reader into the historiographical process as Weir's emphasis on primary sources allows us to evaluate them alongside her" * Independent * "Weir...knows her sources well. She writes in an engaging way and adopts an even-handed approach" * Irish Times * "This is vintage Weir: a thrilling episode of history superbly related and treated with penetrating analysis and a great dollop of common sense" -- Jessie Childs * Literary Review * "The research is exhaustive... It would be hard to imagine a more thorough examination of any comparable historical issue... Weir is to be congratulated on her impartiality and sound judgement" * BBC History Magazine *