Kell's Reading Realm

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The Sixth Wife

The Sixth Wife - Suzannah Dunn The title of this book and the byline which reads: "She survived Henry VIII to be betrayed by love" is very misleading. Anyone, myself included, would have expected this book to be about Katherine Parr, the Sixth Wife of Henry VIII. Katherine had a supporting role to say the least. The book is a first person narrative by her best friend Catherine Brandon, widow of Charles Brandon, the Duke of Suffolk. I had forgiven the author for the misleading title as all aspects of the Tudor reign interest me. However this book was awful.

The narrator Catherine Brandon is very unlikable and even the author admits to her ambivalence of her in the question/answer in the back of the book. So why she chose to write her first person is beyond me. Catherine came off as self-righteous, self-absorbed, selfish and cold. So when you are writing of such a person in first first person it makes for a horrible read.

The author also prides herself for not using "tudorspeak" but calling Catherine Brandon "Cathy" and Edward Seymour "Ed" along with all the other written words she chose for this time period just came off as sounding ridiculous instead of original as the author wanted it to be.

I wanted to quit this book so many times but I also didn't want to be a quitter. The only thing that kept me going was her brief references to Edward Seymour, one of the most interesting men of the Tudor times.