The Autobiography of Henry VIII – Margaret George

The Story

Young Henry is desperate for the attention of his father and secretly hopes his father will

Why did the glorious Golden Prince turn into a huge bulk of a man who was scared of his own shadow

Why did the glorious Golden Prince turn into a huge bulk of a man who was scared of his own shadow?

choose him to become king instead of Arthur. Of course that’s impossible, he is only the second son. As his fathers never neglects to tell him. But when Arthur dies, six months into his marriage with the Spanish princess Catharine of Aragon, everything changes. Henry is now the center of attention. He will be the next Tudor king.

When Henry VII breaths his last breath on 21 April 1509, Henry’s biggest wish is fulfilled. He is now the king of England. Immediately he marries Catharine with a grand feast the English as well Henry will long since remember.

The future looks splendid for the young couple, but after twenty years of marriage and several miscarriages, Henry is desperate. There is no male heir to secure the Tudor Dynasty, only a daughter. 

Henry’s desire to have a legitimate son turns his kingdom upside down and makes him the most legendary English king of all times. But maybe not for the right reasons. 


My opinion

Murder, beheadings, betrayel and raw ambition, Henry VIII court was a drama magnate. Margarete George tells Henry’s colorful life without turning it into a history lesson. Tis novel takes u through all the important events during Henry’s reign: his youth, the important battles, the risings and most of all his turbulent love life and desire to sire a son. Everything is written down by Henry himself in his diary, which his fool Will Somers finds after his death. Will gives his own version of the facts and that brings humour in the novel.

Henry’s mostly pictured as a selfish tyrant who doesn’t understand the word ‘no’ and who beheaded two of his queens. But after readings George’s novel, you understand why the golden prince turned in to a paranoid king. The survival of the Tudor dynastie and all his father’s work rested on his (although very broad) shoulders. The fear that he would not have a legitimate son was unbearable for him.

Reading this novel made me see Henry VIII and other characters in a different light and I really liked it.

I enjoyed this novel a great deal and although it counts as many as 960 pages, it never gets boring. Definitely buy that book!


Language: English

Pages: 939

Publisher: ST. Martins Press


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