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Publisher's Summary

Scotland has been torn apart by civil war, and the young and passionate Catholic Mary Queen of Scots is in the hands of her enemies. Under duress, Mary abdicates in favour of her son, James VI, and flees to England for safety, boldly seeking refuge with her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I. But Elizabeth has never trusted the ambitious Catholic queen and has Mary imprisoned. So begins the treacherous battle between two of history's most powerful and ruthless women. Without once meeting her cousin, Mary is held captive for 19 years, whilst Elizabeth rules in the shadow of countless Catholic plots against her life.
©1964 Jean Plaidy; (P)2008 Isis Publishing Ltd
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Critic Reviews

"Paints a fresh and vivid picture...truly impressive in its breadth of canvas" (Sunday Times)
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Customer Reviews

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By Moragne on 08-02-10

And Her Soul Yearned to be Free

This book tells the story of Mary's life during her exile in England. She expected to be treated like a queen by her cousin, Elizabeth I, and was, instead, treated like an incompetent invader in need of watching.

The book is chaptered by castles. While one might think this would be very boring it is not. Every move, and thus chapter, contains something new in Mary's life. Yes, her life was dull after a while, her health and beauty suffering from the damp and cold, but there is no end to the intrigue that happens while Mary is in England. From plots to marry her off to different men, to those wanting her on the throne of England, and those concerning just getting her back to Scotland. You find out the fate of her son, James, and her third husband the Earl of Bothwell.

Again Plaidy keeps you on the edge of your seat from the beginning to end. I couldn't stop listening to this. I loved how even though I knew what was going to happen I still cried at the end. You know the ending, but Plaidy makes you lament this even if you didn't always like her, and I'll admit at times she was stubborn and foolish. Very worth while bit of your time.

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By Protogere on 08-01-17


Who was your favorite character and why?

Mary, which really surprised me. I found my love for the UK and its history through reading about Elizabeth I as a child and I have always looked at Mary as the evil one, the usurper to be. Jean's characterization of her made me feel sympathy and brought me to see her through new eyes.

What about Jilly Bond’s performance did you like?

I rather enjoyed her ability to work with various accents and give an identity to each character so smoothly without it seeming like she was acting, it was very fluid.

Any additional comments?

The character and constant friend, Mary Satan (?) is she real or fictional? The narrator's pronunciation kept throwing me because I couldn't fathom someone in that period being named Satan, much less referred to as such and I couldn't find anything on her in researching.
I did appreciate the author's summation at the end, even down to the details of the pet.

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Customer Reviews

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By Carla B. on 06-07-17

this book was fantastically well read

This book was fantastically well read to me. so much so I felt It brought Queen Mary back to life. my heart genuinely wept at the end and I felt bereft that the book was over, so much is the intimate feeling on listening to the story of our I'll fated queen on audible.

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By Aapjebaapje on 07-30-15

Chock full of facts!

This historical novel is jam packed with the main life events of Mary Queen of Scots all dramatised for the listener to take in easily. I haven't read any Jean Plaidy for years. Now I have I can't think why. It's as fresh today as it was 40 years ago and could have been written yesterday.

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