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Elizabeth was crowned at 25 after a tempestuous childhood as a bastard and an outcast, but it was only when she reached 50 and all hopes of a royal marriage were dashed that she began to wield real power in her own right. For 25 years she had struggled to assert her authority over advisers who pressed her to marry and settle the succession; now, she was determined not only to reign but also to rule. In this magisterial biography of England's most ambitious Tudor queen, John Guy introduces us to a woman who is refreshingly unfamiliar: at once powerful and vulnerable, willful and afraid. In these essential and misunderstood forgotten years, Elizabeth confronts challenges at home and abroad: war against the Catholic powers of France and Spain, revolt in Ireland, an economic crisis that triggered riots in the streets of London, and a conspiracy to place her cousin Mary Queen of Scots on her throne. For a while she was smitten by a much younger man, but could she allow herself to act on that passion and still keep her throne?
For the better part of a decade, John Guy mined long-overlooked archives, scouring court documents and handwritten letters to sweep away myths and rumors. This prodigious historical detective work has made it possible to reveal for the first time the woman behind the polished veneer: wracked by insecurity, often too anxious to sleep alone, voicing her own distinctive and surprisingly resonant concerns. Guy writes like a dream, and this combination of groundbreaking research and propulsive narrative puts him in a class of his own.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Lesley on 04-19-17
worth the credit
I seldom write positive reviews, but here one is. A well researched, well organised, factual history read beautifully. Nothing jarred. Nothing irritated. I am really glad to have purchased this book.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful