I LOVE historical fiction! I love historical fiction ESPECIALLY when it has to do with the Tudor legacy. I thought I knew everything that I cared to know about the Tudors. However, I had no real understanding of Queen Katherine and the influence she had over England and King Henry VIII. I had never really had the right amount of sympathy for her. The single thing that stood out to me is that she trained a troop of soldiers herself while King Henry VIII was fighting a war with France. She rode out, fought and won a war that Scotland waged on England ALL while secretly being pregnant with the only living child she would ever bring to the throne or thought she would bring to the throne. I’d never read a book or seen a movie, documentary or cable show that gave her the credit that I feel she deserves.
Credit: Letter from Queen Katherine of Aragon as Regent, to her husband, King Henry VIII in France, announcing the English victory over the Scottish army at Flodden and the death of King James IV of Scotland, 16 September, 1513 (pen & ink on paper), . / Private Collection / The Bridgeman Art Library
I’m a sucker for stories about how strong women influenced history. I can identify with strong women. I was BLOWN away at the amount of adversity and grief that this woman endured! It inspired me in the way that I had to sit back and think to myself “And I thought I had it bad?” I don’t think I could have survived what she survived and kept my mind! Okay, I know that this is “historical fiction” but the amount of research that Philappa Gregory puts into every book is kind of amazing and impressive in itself. Yes I DO read the Author’s Notes! lol I’m a geek like that!
If you’re interested in the Tudor legacy at all, or even Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand of Spain and their legacy, I highly recommend reading this one. It’s inspiring if only for the strength of this Constant Princess! Oh and do yourself a favor and read Philippa Gregory’s books in order, this one first! I didn’t read them in order and I wish I would have had this story before reading “The Other Boleyn Girl” and the others. I totally didn’t have an understand of Queen Katherine until I read this one 🙂