Three Sisters, Three Queens, a review

Three Sisters, Three Queens by Philippa Gregory is a historical fiction focusing on the lives of the Tudor Princesses/Queens who lived in Henry VIII’s shadow. Their lives were fascinating and incredibly harsh, being used as pawns in a mans world.

Unfortunately, this was my first DNF of the year. The concept of the book was absolutely captivating, but I really didn’t get on with Gregory’s writing style and her choices.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still so very interested in these women and their lives. I want to research all of them. And I really enjoyed learning the facts that were shown in the part of the book I read (I got 179 pages in). Gregory definitely does her research for these books and is building her story around these snippets of life we know about. These three women had such harsh lives. Living in poverty, going through miscarriage and stillbirths, and being controlled by the men around them as pawns.

But. Gregory’s choice in bringing them to life was… really not captivating for me. Margaret is just represented as a whiney child, and this made sense at the point in her life we started at. As she was a child. But where I gave up she was older than me and still responding in such a childish manner to each and every event. I can’t imagine this really being how someone from this time, who would’ve had to “grow up” much faster than we do today, really reacting in this manner.

Additionally, this book is only from one POV. We learn a bit about Mary and Katherine, but we only see Margaret’s point of view. That is really not what I’d expected from a book with this title. And I think it’s such a pity, I would’ve enjoyed the book a lot more with those additional viewpoints.

On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 3, Atmosphere: 5, Writing: 5, Plot: 7, Intrigue: 4, Logic: 5, Enjoyment: 2 which gives an average of 4.43 and a 2.5* rating.

Highlight here for trigger warnings: murder, death of a loved one, miscarriage, war, relations between an adult and a minor.

The killing blow for this book, for me, was when my other half could tell I was fed up and didn’t want to read it. I’ll push through a lot of books, more than I really should. So if he can tell that I don’t want to be there? Yeah, it’s time to give it up. Have you read anything from Gregory? Did you enjoy it? Was this an awful book to start with? Let me know!

2 thoughts on “Three Sisters, Three Queens, a review”

  1. I definitely read Philippa Gregory before, but years ago when The Other Boleyn Girl was making waves. If you want to read about the women in that period of history, I feel like Alison Weir does a good job of nonfiction biographies! I can’t remember if she’s tackled these women specifically but she’s done a few (Katherine Swynford comes to mind)

    Liked by 1 person

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