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Elizabeth and Leicester: The Truth about the Virgin Queen and the Man She Loved Paperback – October 28, 2008

4.4 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Quite simply one of the most enthralling history books I’ve ever read.”—Alison Weir, author of The Life of Elizabeth I

“Gristwood . . . parses out what we do know about this pair and what information fuels many of the more titillating conclusions people have drawn over the years.”—Chicago Sun-Times

“Vivacious and absorbing . . . Full of intriguing suggestions, stimulating analogies and shrewd connections.”—The Sunday Times (London)

Review

“ Quite simply one of the most enthralling history books I’ve ever read.”
—Alison Weir, author of The Life of Elizabeth I

“ Gristwood . . . parses out what we do know about this pair and what information fuels many of the more titillating conclusions people have drawn over the years.”
Chicago Sun-Times

“ Vivacious and absorbing . . . Full of intriguing suggestions, stimulating analogies and shrewd connections.”
The Sunday Times (London) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books; Reprint edition (October 28, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143114492
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143114499
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #574,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is well written and interesting. It compiles information from many different sources including private papers to provide a great insight into the relationship between Elizabeth and her ultimate favorite, Robert Dudley, without reading like a textbook. It provides a wonderful insight into the relationship that shocked contemporaries and impacted relations between England and many other countries. As the author points out, any courtship between the two lasted only a few months, but seems to have defined how most people think about this decades-long relationship. Much is done to redeem Leicester as a politician and a patriot and to counteract his reputation a scheming traitor.

Sarah Gristwood has published this same book under multiple titles, including Elizabeth & Leicester: Power, Passion, Politics(which has many more reviews) and Elizabeth & Leicester. I made the mistake of buying multiple versions of the same book, thinking they were different books on a similar topic.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I won't go into detail on the book, as other reviewers have already written about that. I am fascinated with the relationship between the two of them and the book didn't disappoint. It was well researched and well written. My only umbrage is, once again, how us kindle readers get ripped off on the pictures. I know kindle has the capability. I would rather seem them in black in white than not at all- Luckily, I am familiar with 'most' of the poitraits the author described. But for someone who doesn't read a lot of Tudor history, you would be so curious to see what the players looked like. To add insult to injury, there is a whole footnote section dedicated to "Picture acknowledgements". I sure would have liked to see them- I didn't want to give the book itself lower stars because it WAS good and the writer addressed all the the issues that have been swirling around for centuries.
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Format: Paperback
This is a well-written analysis of Elizabeth's most important emotional relationship, as well as the most enduring one of her lifetime. Gristwood may sometimes give the Dudleys the benefit of the doubt, but she does not appear particularly biased, especially in light of the beating that Leicester's reputation has taken over time. I liked her thesis that Leicester grew apart from Elizabeth over time, and may have been largely content to do so. I wish Gristwood spent more time on the relationships between Elizabeth's councilors, as I felt those sections gave me greater insight into the Elizabethan court.
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Format: Kindle Edition
It is important to be clear on what this book is not. It is not a novel or a fictionalised rendering, nor is it light reading. What it is, is an extremely well written, well researched new perspective of a fascinating relationship. Instead of pages of familiar filler, the reader is treated to a fresh and convincing look at the historical sources and facts available. As a lover of all things Elisabethan, I was thrilled to discover new patterns, speculaions and conclusions.
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