Book Bingo Square 21 - a book about royalty

Author: Anne

Date Published: Jan 16th 2017, 9:46pm

We have a fascination with royalty in both fact and fiction. I can’t tell you how many books I have on my shelves about fantasy worlds with kings and queens or historical novels which involve the real thing. It seems to be a recurrent element in fiction.

For this square I decided not to delve into the world of high fantasy or seek out books about vampire queens but to read a factual book about a real monarch. I chose “The King is Dead” by Suzannah Liscomb which is about the will of Henry VIII. I was privileged to hear this author speak about the theme of this book last year before it was published and it was that lecture which encouraged me to pick up this volume and I am very glad that I did.

The book itself is lovely. It is hardback and square in shape but not terribly large. It is well illustrated throughout with colour and monochrome pictures of portraits, places and documents. This is a book best read in paper form as my Kindle would not have done it justice. It is not a long book but it is very easy to read and although I already know quite a lot about the king and his activities there was still plenty of substance.

The content is about the death of Henry VIII, what his will revealed about his thinking, and what actually happened when he died. None of it is particularly ground breaking that I could see although the author takes issue with other historians’ interpretation of things, particularly that of David Starkey. It is fascinating, however, to read this information and to follow what happened and to think about what it reveals about Henry’s thought processes and understanding of life. I read this book quickly, as though it was a novel.

My next square is a thriller or suspense novel.