I am really interested in reading both fiction and non fiction books on tudor history. Can you recommed some books for me. I am not undertaking a course just like reading about the period in history
[We periodically get this question, but I don't mind posting it again and again since there are always new books coming out. To see the previous threads just search on "book recommendations" in the sidebar and you'll find threads on general and specific-topic books. - Lara]
I liked David Starkey's "Six Wives" and Alison Weir's "Henry VIII and his Court". Both of these will give you a fairly accurate view of life at Court during the time of Henry VIII. If you are more interested in Queen Elizabeth I, Anne Somerset's "Elizabeth I" is rather good. I really can't think of anything that would do justice to the entire Tudor period. If such a work exists, perhaps Susan H. can let us both know:) Her recommendations are always worth going with!
Anything by Alison Weir, Sandra Worth, Jean Plaidy, or Antonia Fraser gives you good information. Alison Plowden has written many books on Elizabeth I. I'm not a fan of Philippa Gregory's books, but you might enjoy them. Carolyn Meyer's books in the Young Royals Series are meant more for teens but I loved them. The first book in the series, "Mary, Bloody Mary" (guess who its about!), was my favorite and it's more likely to appear in book stores than the other five books in the series. The second to fourth books in the series are about the Tudors, but the fifth to sixth books aren't. The fifth book has a little to do with the Tudors...it's about Catherine de' Medici, the Queen of France during Tudor times.
These are the best recommendations I have. Just let me know if you would like more!
I agree with Em completely about Phillipa Gregory's work. For those of you who have not read "The Other Boleyn Sister", Don't! It was a bad book and was made into an even worse movie.
If you are interested in fiction, Margaret George's "The Autobiography of Henry VIII" is interesting. Speculative, yes. Ridiculous, no.
While I have not read the "Young Royals" series, I do agree that some books meant for young adults are certainly worth a look. I read Gladys Malvern's "The World of Lady Jane Grey" (which was geared for teenagers) many years ago, and absolutely loved it.
AL Rowse The Elizabethan Renaissance - 2 vols.
Non-fiction, covers everything, superb writer, wonderful insights.
Fiction for the mid-Tudor period - Dorothy Dunnett's Lymond series. Titles are Game of Kings, Queen's Play, Disorderly Knights, Pawn in Frankincense, The Ringed Castle, and Checkmate. Impeccably researched, riveting. I re-read the entire series every couple of years.
For non-fiction, John Guy's Tudor England gives a good overview of the kingdom and the people.
Just a thought: If you are interested in the general period, and not only in what was going on with the nobility, I would recommend Norah Loft's "House" books. The author writes about a particular house over several centuries, and the people who lived in this house. The trilogy: "The Town House", "The House at Oldvine", and "The House at Sunset" is absolutely wonderful. Also: "Nethergate", "The Old Priory" and "Bless This House" are terrific.
Thankfully, the author resists the temptation to arrange meetings between her characters and royalty. In real life, such meetings would obviously be unlikely. Highly recommended for anyone who wishes that walls could talk!
Thanks everyone for your help. I am now thinking of undertaking a course in tudor history, does anyone have any suggestions.
Most brilliant Tudor non-fiction: WOLF HALL by Hilary Mantel.
Correction to the previous comment: - "Wolf Hall" is fiction. But I agree, a good book!
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