The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory - book review

Here I am with one more book review! I promised you a Philippa Gregory book each month on my Bookish Goals and here is my January review of "The Constant Princess"

This is the 6th book in "The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels" book series that follows England's history through the eyes of famous women of the Royal family, mostly Queens, and the role they played as women to men's business. Each book could be read as a stand-alone as it covers different time periods with different main characters.The sixth book, follows  Katherine of Aragon, Queen of England, from her early years as Catalina, princess of Spain in 1491 till 1513 plus an additional scene later in her life in 1529. 

First of all, just let me say that Philippa Gregory is one of my favorite authors of all times. Her writing is so captivating that I can never put one of her books down! And she makes history fun! I never expected that I would be so interested in history! It was always the most dull lesson at school!! She has the ability to manifest an entire era in your mind. It was as if I lived in 1500 in the UK and followed Katherine everywhere as her lady-in-waiting!

Back to our review now!
Katherine was practically raised in a war-camp as her parents were fighting the Moors before establishing in the beautiful palace of the Alhambra, in Granada. During her childhood, she learned strategy from her parents and admired her mother's strength and dedication to her throne, her people and to God. 

Alhambra, Granada Spain

She was betrothed to Prince Arthur of Wales, the first son of Henry Tudor (King Henry VII) and Elizabeth of York and heir to the throne since almost from birth (at the age of three actually) and so she was also raised as Princess of Wales and destined to be Queen of England. 

Ludlow Castle, Wales UK

She probably had to face many difficulties being away from her family in such a young age, in a foreign country with strange food and cold weather. It is not a major spoiler, if you are acquainted to her story, and because it is in the book summary too, that Prince Arthur died five months after their marriage a the age of 16, leaving his younger brother Henry as heir to the english throne.What a shock to be raised as Queen-to-be only to be left a widow at your sixteen, without an heir, a Dowager Princess... However, she believed it was her destiny to rule England, a destiny that aligned to God's plans, and so she never gave up. 

I admired Katherine's character. She was so young yet so determined to achieve her aspirations. She knew what she wanted, what had to be done, and wasn't afraid to go after it!
I also loved how her marriage was described by the author. Well, nobody knows for sure what actually happened in those five months, but it is so realistically written, two young people falling in love, that it literally broke my heart when Arthur died. And that death totally set the tone for the rest of the book! You will know what I mean once you read it by yourself!

Other characters from this novel that stand out are King Henry VIII and Margaret Pole.

As you may have guessed... I rated this book with 5 stars and I highly recommend it to historical-fiction overs out there!!

Some of my favorite quotes are actually said by Margaret Pole:

'In this world, we women often find that we have no power over what men do...
...I think a woman has to learn to live with the turn of the coin even when it falls against her.'
'I always know that I am myself, in my heart, whatever title I am given.'
- Margaret Pole 

Other quotes:

“Just because one man calls him Allah and another calls him God is no reason for believers to be enemies.”

“War does not answer war, war does not finish war. The only ending is peace.”

“Then life taught me a harder lesson, beloved: it is better to forgive an enemy than destroy him.”

I would LOVE to see this book transferred to TV as the previous 5 of this series. 

Join me in February as I will read the next book in the series, "The King's Curse". You can watch the TV series "White Queen" and "White Princess" for the first five and read The Constant Princess ar start reading from "The King's Curse". Whatever you like!
See you soon!
xoxo Joan!

Read also my other reviews by Philippa Gregory of The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels:

Books no1-no4 (The Lady Of The Rivers, The White Queen, The Red Queen, The Kingmaker's Daughter)

The White Princess


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