The Last Tudor – Philippa Gregory


The Last Tudor is a historical fiction novel based on real Tudor family in 16th century.

The book is divided into three parts and every part is told by different person. First one is from point of view of Jane Grey, after her we read about a life of her younger sister Katherine and the last part of book is told by their youngest sister Mary.

Jane Grey is a person who would probably get punched in the face when met in real life, but she was my favourite main character. She was educated, religious, bitter and judgmental. She was made to marry Guildford Dudley and after the death of Kind Edward, Jane was crowned as the Queen. This all happened against her will but she had to take the crown no matter what. Shortly after her coronation, The Privy Council turned their side off her and proclaimed Mary Tudor as a legitimate queen. That made Jane the Queen only for 9 days and after that she was arrested and took to Tower of London, where she remained imprisoned until her death few months later. Her last day of life following her death was expected and yet so frustrating, but it was written very well making me excited for the rest of the book.

The second part was about Katherine Grey, who was quite the opposite of her sister, loving dancing, flirting and denying her Protestant faith. After Mary Tudor died, the new Queen of England became Elizabeth I. No one from royal family could marry without her permission, but it didn’t stop Katherine and Edward Seymour from getting married in secret. Elizabeth found out about the wedding and imprisoned the married couple, proclaimed their wedding as fraud and Katherine and her husband were locked in Tower of London. She stayed imprisoned inside her uncle’s house until her death. I liked this part of book because of the romance and the colourful spirit of Katherine’s, but the prison part was way too long and reading about it was quite weary. When you realize it’s been over 100 pages and nothing really happened? After several pages I was losing my interest in finding out what happens next.

The last part is from point of view of the youngest sister Mary, who was way too short for adult woman, almost a dwarf, but in spite of that she found a lover. And because she wasn’t very *cough* smart*cough* she also married him in secret, without Queen’s permission, getting them arrested and separated for the rest of their short lives. The last book was bothering me the most, mostly because if you read of her sisters’ tormented lives for so long, her story was way too predictable and uninteresting.

This novel was entertaining (at least first half), characters were witty, smart but often annoying and very biased against everyone around them. Metaphors and parables were impressive, just the story was dragged for too long and I kept losing attention while reading.

I don’t think I will ever read another novel by this author, but it was still quite enjoyable.




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Natalia 22 Slovak. Read about my passion for fashion, travel and personal experiences.

10 thoughts on “The Last Tudor – Philippa Gregory

  1. I’ve always enjoyed Philippa Gregory’s books and found them hard to put down. I must admit I have had this one sitting on the coffee table since Christmas and agree it hasn’t engaged me like her other books. Must make myself sit down and finish it soon

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Philippa Gregory is a good writer. Ir is a pity she seems to have overreached herself in this novel. I certainly have no interest in following the lives of three women through similar courses to a premature end.


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