The Boleyn Inheritance by Phillipa Gregory

This is another story in the Boleyn saga. It is a story about Anne of Cleves, Katherine Howard, and Jane Rochford.

After Jane Seymours death in childbirth HenryVIII contracts to marry Anne of Cleves. Anne was not very appealing to the king, but he still wanted to sire an heir. She could only communicate in German and this added to Henry’s dislike of her. Their marriage was eventually annulled on the grounds that their marriage was not consumated.

Katherine Howard was the next wife of Henry VIII. He married Katherine in haste because he thought she was pregnant. As it turns out she was not actually pregnant. She was repulsed by Henry because by this time in his life he was obese and had festering, foul smelling ulcers on his legs. So Katherine proceeded to have an affair with Thomas Culpeper Henry’s favourite male courtier. Catherines indescetions became known and she was charged with adultery and treason. After a period of time she was beheaded and buried near her cousin Anne Boleyn.

Jane Boleyn was the wife of George Boleyn, Anne Boleyns brother. She was also lady in waiting to Katherine Howard. Her testimony against her husband,who was being charged with incest and for being a traitor, led to the death of her husband and Anne Boleyn. She was jealous of her sister-in-law and supposedly sexually voyeuristic and given to petty spying. Her fate was to be the same as her husband and Anne and she was beheaded along with Catherine Howard. She was burried alonside Catherine Howard.

I liked this story although I was not a big fan of Jane Boleyn. In spite of that it is a very engaging story in the Tudor saga. As with all of Phillipa Gregory’s historical novels this is a must read.


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