I started this book a couple years ago and was bored this evening, so I re-read a bit and finished it tonight because I want to see the movie and refused to see it before I finished the story.
Pure scandal! Mary, Mary, what a pawn! Her family played her for their own benefit till she was all used up. They were some back-stabbing mofo-ers! She let herself get played, though, but she was so naive and hardly learned to keep her mouth shut at the end. She's lucky she didn't meet the executioner's blade with her sister. And oh, that horrible sister, Anne, when she takes over and becomes Queen...I wanted to slap her so many times throughout this story! But she sets herself up for a bad end, of course, with the help of her screwed up family. How could she expect to sleep with her brother and so many others and have nothing bad come out of it?! She got the axe (this is in the history books - I'm not ruining anything here), and Henry probaby didn't think twice about that decision. Speaking of...Henry VIII, what a bastard in this book! Yes, a big one, too! He had his way in every situation (especially with women), and if you turned on him, watch out! It could be off with their head like that!! The movie is sure to be good!
Philippa Gregory paints a different picture of the past, showing how life was for women when men ruled England. I know a lot of the background story is made up, but she did a lot of research while writing this book (she wrote about that in the back), so I can only imagine that what she wrote is not far off from the historic truth.