The Forbidden Queen – by Anne O’Brien – independent book review – Historical Fiction (England, France)

This is a totally satisfying read. I knew little about Katherine of Valois before reading this, other than that she was the wife of both King Henry V and Owen Tudor. Now I feel like I know her. Awarded five stars on Goodreads.

I understand how she grew up feeling unloved (though this may not be historically accurate), the powerlessness feelings that come from being used as a pawn in politics, her disappointing marriage to Henry, and the fulfillment she found in her few, final years with Tudor.

I better understand the background that set up events that would eventually lead to the Tudor dynasty, including more about relations between England and Wales. And I learned about some of the hereditary madness in Katherine’s family that may have eventually led to the role King Henry VI’s madness played in the Wars of the Roses.

O’Brien has created a rich and believable narrative of Katherine’s life and what it was like to be a royal female in the 1400s.

More about Anne O’Brien.

You may also be interested in my review of other historical novels by O’Brien:

The Scandalous Duchess

The King’s Sister

The King’s Concubine