Katherine The Queen
St. Martin's, 2010 (2010)
Reviewed by Wanda Plourde
atherine Parr was born around August 1512. Her upbringing was comfortable with strong bonds of family affection. In spring 1529, when she was nearly seventeen, Katherine married Edward Borough of Gainsborough Old Hall. She was widowed by age twenty. At twenty two, Katherine Parr became the third wife of John Neville, Lord Latimer, living in the Yorkshire Dales. She was widowed again nine years later.
t this time, King Henry VIII was looking for a sixth wife, seeking different qualities than previously. He wanted a companion, closer to his own age, someone intelligent and naturally gracious. Reluctant at first, because she wanted to marry for love, Katherine was thirty years old when she wed King Henry. This marriage lasted three years, and Katherine came close to being beheaded like her predecessor Ann Boleyn. Again widowed, as the last surviving wife of King Henry, she was left one of the wealthiest woman in England.
fter Henry's death, Katherin secretly married the rakish Sir Thomas Seymour. This union gave her a brief moment of love and happiness, which in the end turned to scandal. She died giving birth to her only surviving child. Katherine was a successful, influential Queen, who was also a very good stepmother to the royal children. She restored Mary and Elizabeth to the succession, and also helped guide the education of Henry's heir, Edward.
atherine was a very intelligent woman. She loved the arts and fashion, and was well read. She collected and also wrote books. Katherine spoke French and learned to speak Latin. She loved to ride and hunt. A collector of coins, she played chess and enjoyed music and dancing. She was well versed in many things. Linda Porter did her research well. Her writing takes readers into the era and gives them a great respect for Katherine Parr. Being a woman in that time, and surviving as Henry's queen, had to be very hard. I found her story fascinating.
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