Saturday, June 16, 2012

Review: The King's Rose - Alisa M. Libby

Where I got it: Inter-library Loan
Rating: 3.5 stars  
Cover Rating: 3.5 stars (Fitting but a bit boring.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: March 29, 2011
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Page Count: 297 p.
Buy it: Book Depository / Amazon
Add it: Goodreads

Catherine never asked to be Queen, but greatness was thrust upon her by the Howard family. At first Catherine thought it might not be so bad and it wouldn't have been if she could produce an heir. That's all King Henry wants, an heir. Catherine's family decides that desperate times call for desperate measures and they have to do anything they can to get her pregnant before it's too late.

So last month I read and reviewed Gilt by Katherine Longshore which is also about the 5th wife of King Henry VII. These books were completely different. Unfortunately this one I found a tad dry and boring. In this story, Catherine is a good girl and a puppet for her family. She does whatever she is told and pushes down her feelings whenever she can. She doesn't really have any close friends but her family controls her every movement. It's not very entertaining reading about someone who puts up no resistance and doesn't seem to care enough to challenge herself. In this story it's the family's idea that she go to Culpepper to try and get pregnant. She already harbors feelings for Culpepper so she has no objections to this coupling. Catherine's attitude in this novel made me feel a tad bit more sympathetic to her in the end. Her married life was devoted to trying to hide her past and please her King. She bent over backwards trying to be exactly what he wanted, but all he wanted was a healthy son. This was an interesting read. It was nice seeing Catherine's life from her perspective and seeing her much more subdued than in Gilt.

First Line:
"The Thames is a messenger of fortune, rippling smoothly beneath the prow of this barge."

Favorite Lines:
"She releases my arm and sinks back into the shadows, muttering to herself. I stand here numbly, dumbly. I think that my whole world has changed: the witch wasn't a witch, after all."


  1. I didn't know what this book was about, but I have seen the cover/title around. Sorry it didn't work for you. It does sound a bit boring to have an MC that doesn't really fight for herself at all. I do think Gilt sounds awesome though.


  2. It's a shame that this book wasn't as good as you'd hoped, perhaps if there'd been a bit of growth in Catherine's character? Great, honest review, Britt!


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