There is a reason this book is labeled as Fiction. While we all know the characters existed there are obvious differences. I am relatively certain that Mary was older than Anne. Many people may not enjoy this book if they want an accurate historical narrative or a biography. This story is just that—a story written and imagined for the enjoyment of the public. All the characters are exaggerated and liberties were taken with them. We don’t know for certain whether or not any of Mary Boleyn’s children belonged to the King, who was older, It is enjoyable enough and a relatively quick read—I was finished in a few hours.
Part of my problem with this book is that the Henry the VIII was already a ruthless enough person (after all he did wipe out most of his wives and scores of other people on a whim) and believe it or not in this book he seems positively passive compared to the Boleyn and Howard Families.
Other readers are all over the place on this book. Some love it for the sensuality and intrigue brought in by the characters, some fall in love with the story and rather end up feeling it was real. But only elements of this story are the truth.
Do not read this book if you are distressed by rather over the top sexual descriptions, discussions, and incest. While it is intriguing it no doubt upset a lot of people who read this. So for the people who enjoy tales of passion, romance, lust, greed and every intrigue that can erupt in a small court of people always jockeying for position, notices, honors, favors, well this good reading material!
In Mary Boleyn: The Mistress of Kings, the authoress Alison Weir has based her work in facts; facts she and others have painstakingly researched for years. She lays it out genealogically and begins her paper trail. That is a brilliant book but not covered in this review. If you are after the facts (as best as we can find them) then read this book by Alison Weir.
Don’t get me wrong. I actually quite enjoyed the Other Boleyn SIster book since I accepted it what it for what it was, a fun work of fiction and supposition. It definitely was a good way to spend a light sunny afternoon whiling away time attempting to forget I had to flu and go into another country into an intrigue that I know nothing of and know I would read it again and will probably watch the movies as well.
But right now I am reading the book written by Alison Weir. Because you see, fact can be even more interesting than fiction and usually far more involved! We shall see.