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The White Princess

Cousins' War, Book 5
Lu par : Bianca Amato
Durée : 19 h
Prix : 25,36 €
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Description

The newest novel from #1 New York Times best-selling author and "queen of royal fiction" (USA Today) Philippa Gregory tells the passionate story of Elizabeth of York, daughter of the White Queen, who gets caught in the middle of a battle for the crown of England.

The White Princess opens as the news of the battle of Bosworth is brought to Princess Elizabeth of York, who will learn not only which rival royal house has triumphed, Tudor or York, but also which suitor she must marry: Richard III her lover, or Henry Tudor her enemy.

A princess from birth, Elizabeth fell in love with Richard III, though her mother made an arranged betrothal for her with the pretender to the throne: Henry Tudor. When Henry defeats Richard against all odds, Elizabeth has to marry the man who murdered her lover in battle, and create a new royal family with him and his ambitious mother: Margaret Beaufort, The Red Queen. But, while the new monarchy can win, it cannot, it seems, hold power in an England which remembers the House of York with love.

The new king’s greatest fear is that somewhere, outside England, a prince from the House of York is waiting to invade and re-claim the throne for the house of York. Fearing that none of his new allies can be trusted, Henry turns to his wife to advise him, all the time knowing that her loyalties must be divided. When the young man who would be king finally leads his army and invades England, it is for Elizabeth to decide whether she recognizes him as her brother and a claimant to the throne, or denies him in favor of the husband she is coming to love....

©2013 Philippa Gregory (P)2013 Simon & Schuster

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  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Lisa
  • 14/08/2013

Paid by the Word? Double for "the boy"?

Patience. This is, without doubt, the most repetitive book I've read, including cookbooks. I dare you to take a sip of wine every time "the boy" is mentioned in the latter half of this book and try to finish a chapter before passing out. Truly, this story (don't confuse it with history) could have been told in one-third the length.

Nearly every one of Elizabeth's thoughts, and her conversations with Maggie, with Henry, with Margaret, with her mother (notice a pattern?), are repeated almost verbatim and/or paraphrased multiple times -- some ad nauseam. Entire chapters consist of repetitions, with only one new minor point plot offered. Describing being drawn and quartered once in excruciating detail will suffice, thanks. Just write "drawn and quartered" after that, we're smart enough to know what you mean. We don't need to be lectured in almost identical detail twice, and partially a third time . . . maybe more. I confess I drifted off a number of times, but I doubt I missed anything I hadn't heard previously several times.

If I hadn't liked The White Queen so much, I wouldn't have persevered to finish, hoping for more and better. It's hard to swallow the premise that the calm, poised, wise-beyond-her-years Elizabeth of The White Queen would develop a grand passion for her uncle, who betrayed a promise to her father, imprisoned and potentially murdered her dear brothers. Cultivating his interest for strategic reasons to protect the Woodvilles may make have made sense. The main characters are static over a near 15-year time span, never growing or learning from their mistakes. If Henry VII was as incapable, cowardly, sniveling, and mother-dominated as depicted here, his uncle would have made a deal with the Yorks to knock him off as soon as there was an heir and a spare, putting the York-Tudor hybrid Arthur on the throne. In reality, history suggests Henry VII had no mistress after marriage to Elizabeth, that Elizabeth and Henry had a successful perhaps loving marriage, that Margaret Beaufort was not an ogre, that Henry's reign was more successful, etc.

What a disappointment!

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  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Qiani Davenport
  • 08/08/2013

Worst of the Cousins' War Series!

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

I don't know. Someone who can tolerate repetition and an annoying, weak, and indecisive Queen.

What do you think your next listen will be?

I have to check my wish list but I think I may read about Queen Isabella of Spain by another author.

Which scene was your favorite?

I don't think I had a favorite. I did enjoy the brief period of Elizabeth & Henry being in love but that did not last long.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The White Princess?

The second and third parts of this book were horrible. It went on and on and on! I don't think I could listen to the phrases "I don't know" or "the boy" any longer. It started off strong but it should have been written from another perspective. This book was barely about Elizabeth of York. It was all about a paranoid Henry and "the boy". I am so disappointed because I love this series. I wish we could have learned a little more about her kids. Elizabeth just came off whiny and weak. I wish it would have extended further into Arthur's death.

Any additional comments?

I was highly disappointed in this book. I had been waiting for it since before she wrote "The Kingmaker's Daughter". Elizabeth was not likeable at all. She was weak and indecisive and intolerable. The portrayal of Henry was ridiculous. I know she takes liberties with the history but this was just too far out there. It was not believable at all. How can a king spend so many of his years reign being paranoid about "the boy" and when he finally gets him he does not execute him because he is infatuated by his wife!!! I almost couldn't listen to the whole thing. I had to force myself to finish it. I have never been so happy to have an audiobook end. The only good thing about this book was Bianca Amato.

11 sur 11 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • FanB14
  • 05/08/2013

Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow

No, not quoting Macbeth in comparison to this work of historical fiction, merely trying to illustrate how repetition consumes this novel. If you've read several of Philippa Gregory's works, you know the recipe of a little fact; a lot of conjecture; and a great deal of restating the same ideas. These works are B+ romantic novels and I'm not embarrassed to admit I enjoy some of her books.

It doesn't put me off how she takes leeway with some facts. Having read several of her Tudor novels, I was empowered to read and research material on the subjects on my own. Enjoyed the journey to discovery.

I had high hopes wanting to know about Henry VIII's mother and the childhood of the four children. Minimal pages are devoted to the offspring and quick references to Henry's gluttony of food and playing games were given paucity of attention. The beginning was interesting (even if not historically correct) and I sympathized with Elizabeth being trapped in a loveless marriage. However, the next 3/4 of the book regurgitated the same idea of how Henry VII was a usurper and his paranoia of chasing the possibility a true York king coming to take his throne were churned out superfluously.

Greggory should take her time and get back to the originality and fervent storytelling from her earlier novels instead of churning out books so quickly. Ignore the big paychecks for quantity and take time for quality.

35 sur 37 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Bonnie-Ann
  • 27/07/2013

My ears are bleeding

I truly don't know where to start with how much I disliked this book so I'll actually begin with the few positives.

Bianca Amato's narration was extraordinary and the only feature that allowed me to finish this novel.I have listened to books she has read in the past where I wasn't in love with her voice, but for this book, her voice was well-paced and soothing to listen to. She got the gender voices done without over-exaggerating the differences. Truly, I would not have finished this book (and almost didn't) but for the narration. I have never put those words in a review before.

The novel brings the War of the Roses series to a conclusion and merges it into the Tudor series (The Constant Princess would logically follow from the conclusion of this story). I'm very glad Ms. Gregory wrote the Tudor books and The White Queen first so that I know that, somewhere, she has some knowledge of the time period. This book most certainly does not demonstrate any such knowledge.

The negatives are based in the "levels" of the book that Ms. Gregory defines at the end in her "Author's Note." Apparently, her intent was to create a "novel about a mystery that has never been solved." Therefore, she unabashedly makes stuff up left and right throughout the entire novel. I would love to see a single piece of historical research that even hints that Henry VII raped Elizabeth of York repeatedly prior to their wedding in order to see if she was fertile and only married her once she became pregnant. For Tudor fans out there who have done an iota of research, this is painful to read material. I completely understand that Ms. Gregory is of the school of thought that one of the two princes survived the Tower of London and that Richard III was not responsible for their deaths. I'm not taking a stand on that question in this review -- even if you accept as true that the younger prince (who would have rightfully been Richard IV of England) was not in the Tower of that he somehow survived or that someone other than Richard III or one of his minions killed the princes, the story doesn't work.

I will give a fiction writer every reasonable inch of "willing suspension of disbelief" to allow them to tell their story. What I will not enable with any positive comments is not warning the reader in advance that the author's plan is to do so. A recent book called "The Boleyn King" says at the outset: what if Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII had a son and Anne Boleyn was not executed? That is a very good premise for a novel and I enjoyed the story. It was fun, it was completely against any and all historical facts and I had no problem with the story BECAUSE of the disclosure. Ms. Gregory attempts in her Author's Note to justify her diversion from anything resembling truth.

Even more grating was the author's use of repetition as a literary tool. I've complained about this style in other novels she has written (specifically, "The Red Queen"), but she perfected whiny repeated phrases in this most recent epic tale. Once again, I found myself thinking "ok Philippa, I get it... Henry VII is afraid of 'the boy' who might be young Richard... I get that Henry VII and his ridiculous mother, Margaret Beaufort, trust no one and have a spy network. I get that Elizabeth of York is emotionally torn between her duties as a York princess and her duties as a Tudor wife." I felt like my ears were bleeding from the use of the words: "the boy." I'd be very interested to see a proportional word count of how many times that phrase appears. It could easily be up to 25% of the words in the entire novel. Maybe it's the presence of Margaret Beaufort -- the repetition was ghastly in the novel about her as well.

I have never, ever given a story one star until today. This book was simply horrible. Ms. Gregory fails in her attempt to re-write history; written by the victors or not. The characters are shallow and false. The writing is borderline unbearable. The "mystery" that is "solved" by the novel has nothing to do with Elizabeth of York so even the title of the book is misleading. If Ms. Gregorty wanted to write a "what if" story about the younger prince in the Tower, she should have called it "The Missing Prince" or something else that more truthfully highlights what the story is about -- not used an interesting woman from York/Lancaster/Tudor times and crammed her into being the emotional outlet for a fairytale that has no basis in fact.

If you have read all of the other books and really want to finish the story, go ahead and wade through this tome. Otherwise, use your credit more wisely.

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  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • M. Blackstock
  • 28/07/2013

Not her best work

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

The theme and dialogue is quite repetative, and feels boring. I had waited for this biik with such excitement and anticipaption and was disapointed. I am also tired of all the references to Melucina.

What could Philippa Gregory have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

She did not need to keep repeating the same things in different ways over and over. I also think more could have been done with the alliance with Spain, Arthur's death and the arrival of the Infanta.

Have you listened to any of Bianca Amato’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Bianca Amato is a wonderful narrator and does as much as anyone can with a weak story.

Did The White Princess inspire you to do anything?

THe White Princess had so much potential and was such a disapointment.

12 sur 13 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars
  • C.L.B.
  • 29/07/2013

Not what I expected

Would you try another book from Philippa Gregory and/or Bianca Amato?

Yes

Would you be willing to try another book from Philippa Gregory? Why or why not?

Yes, I liked most of her other books

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

yes

Was The White Princess worth the listening time?

not really

Any additional comments?

There was so much repetition, it got really boring.

3 sur 3 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Shona
  • 16/04/2018

Great historical fiction

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I recently found out that Henry VII is my 14th great grandfather, so I have recommended this book to all of my cousins. I am amazed at the strength of the women of this time period. Their value was based on the male heirs that they could produce. They had to fight to secure "good" marriages for their daughters and protect the legacy of their sons while their husbands were off fighting wars and philandering. It's not a life I envy, but it;s certainly interesting history.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • asdfasdfasdf
  • 29/08/2017

Philippa and Bianca are the Best!

I don't normally take time to write reviews because I'm such an audiobook junkie I just don't have time in between to share my thoughts. I can't write reviews while listening to the next book, unfortunately. I listened to this book a while ago and happened to be browsing by because I'm currently watching the new Blu-ray series based on this book. I was taken aback by the lack of an overwhelming positive response by reviewers. Nearly every book I see on Audible has all five-star reviews regardless of merit so it's really noticeable when reviewers pan a particular book. Damning with faint praise and even some ridiculous one-stars. All of Philippa's Tudor/Plantagenet books are not merely OK but sublimely excellent, and I don't recall this one being any kind of exception. I devoured all of them almost back-to-back. They really are together an amazing, umpteen-volume mega-novel of which this is only a single chapter. It took me a long time to take the plunge originally because from the outside looking in it looks like an impossible task. Audible isn't even consistent in listing the books as a single series. Where do you even begin? (Currently The Lady of the Rivers unless Philippa writes some kind of prequel in the future.) I finally took the plunge when Audible had all the Tudor books on sale. At the time I was mad at Audible because I already had 50 unlistened-to books but as soon as I started Philippa eclipsed everything else. I bought all the sale books and less than a year a later I've listened to every single Philippa book on Audible and some that are not (you can have the Kindle robot read in a pinch when there's no Audible version). The only books of hers that were at all a disappointment were the Order of Darkness series, and that was only because they were YA-oriented. The Plantagenet/Tudor you novels you can happily binge through from start to finish. I don't know what these other reviewers were thinking. I hope they don't discourage anyone from discovering some of the very finest audiobooks available.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mary Smiroldo
  • 27/08/2017

Excellent!

I am actually going back and re-listening to the Cousins War series in sequence, after listening to the stories randomly. As always, Philippe Gregory's books are well researched, and filled with a perfect balance of romance, intrigue, and historical facts. Bianca Amato is brilliant in her narration. I have listened to those Gregory books narrated by others, but none compare to the smooth, pleasant voice of Amato. I could listen to her read the dictionary, and be completely soothed. I would, and have recommended this, and all of Philippe Gregory's books to anyone interested in this period in history.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Soph11
  • 15/06/2017

Princess of York

What a great story! Yes it might have been repetitive at times but I fell in love with Elizabeth. I have always loved the Tudor reign (Henry V & Elizabeth l) but never really looked at the beginning of the Tudor reign or even the dynasty of the Plantagenets before them. I am so glad to learn at least a bit of their story and I feel joy and heartbreak for the white princess. Great read if you enjoy English history

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.