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The White Princess by Philippa Gregory

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Posts: 5
Joined: February 2011
Location: London, UK

The White Princess by Philippa Gregory

Post by harpistic » Wed August 7th, 2013, 12:52 am


I don't usually write book reviews and I haven't visited this forum in a long time, but I wanted to post my thoughts on the book in case anyone else has read it and feels similarly - or otherwise.

The White Queen is still my favourite of this series, but this book suffers from too many of the problems of The Red Queen - excessive repetition and weak characterisation.

The repetition does reduce after a while, which is a relief, as the start was so tedious, I almost gave up on the book. It's a particular shame that most of the repetition (characters saying the same thing again and again in the same speech) is attributed to Elizabeth Woodville, by far the most interesting character of all - who sadly plays a minor role in this novel.

The themes are also very repetitive, with little development of the characters, and while there are some potentially tantalising storylines, these aren't really explored as far as they could have been. (No spoilers here!)

The ending is also very abrupt and disconcerting, as it doesn't occur at a natural place nor draw satisfactory conclusions - especially considering Elizabeth herself died only a few years later.

Given how few historical novels there are about Elizabeth of York and / or Henry VII, this has been a very disappointing treatment of both people. And considering that the richness of historical fiction comes from the reader inhabiting the characters' world, that really doesn't happen here.

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