The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

(Cover picture courtesy of Glamour Glory.)

Brother turns on brother to win the ultimate prize, the throne, in this dazzling account of the wars of the Plantagenets.  They ruled before the Tudors, and now Philippa Gregory brings them to life through the dramatic and intimate stories of the secret players: the indomitable women.

The White Queen tells the story of Elizabeth Woodville, a woman of extraordinary beauty and ambition, who secretly marries the newly crowned boy king.  While Elizabeth rises to the demands of her exalted position and fights for the success of her family, her two sons become the central figures in a famous unsolved mystery that has confounded historians for centuries: the lost princes in the Tower of London.  Philippa Gregory brings the artistry and intellect of a master writer and storyteller to a new era in history and begins what is sure to be another best-selling classic series from this beloved author.

When I received The White Queen as a late birthday present from my best friend, I was a bit skeptical.  Historical fiction had bored me up to that point, but Philippa Gregory’s amazing novel forever changed my attitude toward it.

The White Queen is the tale of Elizabeth Woodville, a woman who is recently widowed and fighting for her two sons’ inheritance.  She meets the boy king Edward and immediately sparks fly.  A whirlwind romance, battle and secret marriage later, Elizabeth becomes Queen of England.  Philippa Gregory’s amazing novel chronicles the life of an extraordinary woman who was a secret force behind politics in the late 15th century England.

Elizabeth is a very believable, complex character who makes a wonderful narrator.  Her motivations vary throughout the novel, yet she is still sympathetic and readers will root for her the whole time.  She truly comes alive in Philippa Gregory’s vivid descriptions of life in 15th century England and the multifaceted politics of the time.  There is certainly a reason why Philippa Gregory is known as the queen of royal fiction.

I give this book 4.5/5 stars.

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  1. James Kennedy

    The speed with which you review these books amazes me.

    I’m a lover of non-fiction who’s trying hard to read fiction as well. Your blog is a great place for me to discover new books in genres I would otherwise never have read. Thank you!

    • Carrie Slager

      No problem and thanks so much for commenting! I guess I do review books fairly quickly, don’t I? Oh well, it’s something I really enjoy. If you’re in to non-fiction but are looking for good fiction books, I’d recommend you check out my other review on ‘Genghis: Birth of an Empire by Conn Iggulden.’ It’s a very factual book, but also a great fictional account of the famous Khan.

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