The King’s Pleasure: A Novel of Henry VIII (Tudor Rose, #2) by Alison Weir

The King’s Pleasure: A Novel of Henry VIII (Tudor Rose, #2) by Alison Weir

Title:  The King’s Pleasure: A Novel of Henry VIII
Series:  Tudor Rose, #2
Author: Alison Weir
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Genre:  Historical Fiction
Format:  Kindle
No. of Pages:  590
Date of US Publication:  30 May, 2023
My Rating:   5 Stars

My Thoughts 

Every time I crack open a book by Alison Weir, I know that, with the exception of conversational accuracy, what I’m reading is as close to the accurate truth without overdramatised filler. As an historian, Weir keeps to the facts - I love historical fiction and accuracy of the historical aspect of that fiction is important to me and I very much appreciate Ms. Weir's books for this as well as that I find her stories about long ago royalty to be completely readable. 

After reading the Tudor wives series and enjoying them (along with many of her other titles) I was really looking forward to this one after receiving an invitation to read it. 

This one took me a while to get through - at 600+ pages a book of this length I generally prefer on audio - but this title is easy to get into and accomplished making Henry far more human and relatable than the history I grew up with in my school days. It lets the reader see Henry's (historically, royalty named Henry are usually known as Harry to their families and friends) more personal and true self; the man behind the crown. The man he viewed himself as. 

I continue to be impressed by the author's talent and hard work. Recommended! 

Thank you to Ballantine Books and NetGalley for the DRC!


The New York Times bestselling author of the Six Tudor Queens series explores the private side of the legendary king Henry VIII and his dramatic and brutal reign in this extraordinary historical novel.

Having completed her Six Tudor Queens series of novels on the wives of Henry VIII, extensively researched and written from each queen's point of view, Alison Weir now gives Henry himself a voice, telling the story of his remarkable thirty-six-year reign and his six marriages.

Young Henry began his rule as a magnificent and chivalrous Renaissance prince who embodied every virtue. He had all the qualities to make a triumph of his kingship, yet we remember only the violence. Henry famously broke with the pope, founding the Church of England and launching a religious revolution that divided his kingdom. He beheaded two of his wives and cast aside two others. He died a suspicious, obese, disease-riddled tyrant, old before his time. His reign is remembered as one of dangerous intrigue and bloodshed—and yet the truth is far more complex.

The King's Pleasure
 brings to life the idealistic monarch who expanded Parliament, founded the Royal Navy, modernized medical training, composed music and poetry, and patronized the arts. A passionate man in search of true love, he was stymied by the imperative to produce a male heir, as much a victim of circumstance as his unhappy wives. Had fate been kinder to him, the history of England would have been very different.

Here is the story of the private man. To his contemporaries, he was a great king, a legend in his own lifetime. And he left an extraordinary legacy—a modern Britain.


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