Sunday, August 24, 2008

Odds and Ends

So, yesterday was almost a wasted day for me, if you count lazing around and napping a waste of a good day off. I'm trying to feel bad about it, but I just can't get up enough energy to do that. I wasn't feeling quite the thing, so I spent the day reading and watching some tennis. I'm trying desperately to catch up on my reviews for RRT, but it seems like that's going to be an ongoing battle. At least I don't have that many September books to review.

The one I'm currently zipping through is THE QUEEN'S LADY by Barbara Kyle, an historical fiction book taking place during the downward spiral of King Henry VIII's first marriage to Catherine of Aragon. Now, any of my good friends can tell you that I'm a HUGE fan of Tudor history, despite Hal's greatest bastard of all times proclivities. The history of those times, though, is just fascinating to me. The melodrama that surrounded Henry's court, especially his extramarital antics, is fodder for some of the greatest stories I've read. What's interesting about THE QUEEN'S LADY is that the author does not skimp on painting a realistic portrayal of just what those times were like, and trust me, they had to be scary. Henry was moving Heaven and earth to have his marriage to Catherine annulled and had already set his eyes on his next wife, Anne Boleyn. And Catherine, bless the poor lady's heart, did her utmost best in continuing to love her husband, despite his pig-headedness. Even until her last days, she swore that she'd always been a true wife to him, that Henry was just misguided.

Ok, I kinda got off topic there, but I swear I do love this stuff! The Kyle book doesn't just focus on the relationship between Henry, Anne and Catherine, but deals with Honor Larke, a lady in Catherine's royal retinue. Ms. Kyle weaves her own story of a woman who vows to stand by her queen's side into the tapestry that makes up the last days of Henry's marriage to Catherine. It's definitely not light reading for those with a weak stomach. But it's worth a look-see if you're a fan of historical fiction done right.

Now I definitely have a taste to go back and re-watch the entire second season of The Tudors, which is another weakness of mine on Showtime... ;-)

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