The Six Wives Of Henry VIII
The six wives of Henry VIII - Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, Anna of Cleves, Katherine Howard and Catherine Parr - have become defined in a popular sense not so much by their lives as by the way these lives ended.
But, as Antonia Fraser conclusively proves, they were rich and feisty characters. They may have been victims of Henry's obsession with a male heir, but they were not willing victims. On the contrary, they displayed considerable strength and intelligence at a time when their sex supposedly possessed little of either.
Read by Isla Blair
'Biography with attitude is Fraser's speciality, and this study of the Tudor queens is as partisan and feistily argued as any she has done. Though the marauding Henry come out of it - as one would expect - badly, Frazer's favourite queen is, unexpectedly, Anna of Cleves, who kept her head, took Henry's money and spent the rest of her days carousing her way around a series of comfortable country houses, emerging only to do some serious shopping. Catherine of Aragon, as spirited as she is spiritu (IRISH TIMES)
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