Book Reviews

Book Review: Bring Up the Bodies.


This voluminous and well-researched book describes Anne Boleyn’s downfall and governmental problems of England under Henry VIII. He married six times in an attempt to sire a male heir for the throne and in the process severed links with the Catholic Church in Vatican.

The book starts with events in 1535 with the downfall of Anne Boleyn and ascendancy of Jane Seymour. Henry VIII’s first wife Katherine of Aragon started the estrangement and eventually caused the falling out of England with the Vatican.

Henry VIII married Anne Boleyn with the sole objective to produce a male heir tot eh throne and when this hope was dashed, he accused her of high treason and her beheaded in London.

The author tells the story very well and in an interesting fashion, depicting how 16th century English kings ruled. All had several advisers. Henry VIII’s most influential advise was Cromwell, who the population and king’s entourage despised with a passion as he was of “low birth”. Cromwell managed conspiracies, while the finances of the country were suffering due to the king’s poor grasp of financial matters.

Hilary mantel tells the story through the eyes of Cromwell and tells it in a unique fashion

This is a fine book for anyone interested in history, particularly English history in the 16th century.

Buy it, read it, and learn how England was governed then!

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