Anne Boleyn in London
There is no doubt that Anne Boleyn, more than any of Henry VIII’s wives, has always been surrounded by controversy, whether alive or dead. In her novel Anne Boleyn in London, Lissa Chapman provides the reader with an objective view of the ill-fated queen as well as those events and people who surrounded her throughout her life.
Chapman has done extensive research and not only quotes her sources but also weighs how much we can trust them depending on the political leanings of the source. Obviously, someone such as Eustace Chapuys would naturally align himself with Queen Catherine of Aragon and thus be an unreliable source of information concerning how the people felt about Anne Boleyn. Chapman tries to counter his point of view with those of others who were loyal to Anne.
This novel is effective in giving the reader a detailed look at real life in Tudor England with respect to actual day-to-day activities such as hygiene and the difficulty of moving Henry’s entire court on his whim. However, the one fault I found was that the book was often repetitive between chapters. Perhaps a bit of revision to improve the flow is in order. That is my only complaint, and as a research book I find it very informative.
Pen and Sword