Young and Damned and Fair by Gareth Russell audiobook

Young and Damned and Fair: The Life of Catherine Howard, Fifth Wife of King Henry VIII

By Gareth Russell
Read by Jenny Funnell

Simon & Schuster Audio 9781501108631
15.96 Hours Unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
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    ISBN: 9781508227380

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Written with an exciting combination of narrative flair and historical authority, this interpretation of the tragic life of Catherine Howard, fifth wife of Henry VIII, breaks new ground in our understanding of the very young woman who became queen at a time of unprecedented social and political tension and whose terrible errors in judgment quickly led her to the executioner’s block. On the morning of July 28, 1540, as King Henry’s VIII’s former confidante Thomas Cromwell was being led to his execution, a teenager named Catherine Howard began her reign as queen of a country simmering with rebellion and terrifying uncertainty. Sixteen months later, the king’s fifth wife would follow her cousin Anne Boleyn to the scaffold, having been convicted of adultery and high treason. The broad outlines of Catherine’s career might be familiar, but her story up until now has been incomplete. Unlike previous accounts of her life, which portray her as a naïve victim of an ambitious family, this compelling and authoritative biography will shed new light on Catherine Howard’s rise and downfall by reexamining her motives and showing her in her context, a milieu that goes beyond her family and the influential men of the court to include the aristocrats and, most critically, the servants who surrounded her and who, in the end, conspired against her. By illuminating Catherine's entwined upstairs/downstairs worlds as well as societal tensions beyond the palace walls, the author offers a fascinating portrayal of court life in the sixteenth century and a fresh analysis of the forces beyond Catherine’s control that led to her execution—from diplomatic pressure and international politics to the long-festering resentments against the queen’s household at court. Including a forgotten text of Catherine’s confession in her own words, color illustrations, family tree, map, and extensive notes, Young and Damned and Fair changes our understanding of one of history’s most famous women while telling the compelling and very human story of complex individuals attempting to survive in a dangerous age.

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Summary

Summary

Written with an exciting combination of narrative flair and historical authority, this interpretation of the tragic life of Catherine Howard, fifth wife of Henry VIII, breaks new ground in our understanding of the very young woman who became queen at a time of unprecedented social and political tension and whose terrible errors in judgment quickly led her to the executioner’s block.

On the morning of July 28, 1540, as King Henry’s VIII’s former confidante Thomas Cromwell was being led to his execution, a teenager named Catherine Howard began her reign as queen of a country simmering with rebellion and terrifying uncertainty. Sixteen months later, the king’s fifth wife would follow her cousin Anne Boleyn to the scaffold, having been convicted of adultery and high treason.

The broad outlines of Catherine’s career might be familiar, but her story up until now has been incomplete. Unlike previous accounts of her life, which portray her as a naïve victim of an ambitious family, this compelling and authoritative biography will shed new light on Catherine Howard’s rise and downfall by reexamining her motives and showing her in her context, a milieu that goes beyond her family and the influential men of the court to include the aristocrats and, most critically, the servants who surrounded her and who, in the end, conspired against her. By illuminating Catherine's entwined upstairs/downstairs worlds as well as societal tensions beyond the palace walls, the author offers a fascinating portrayal of court life in the sixteenth century and a fresh analysis of the forces beyond Catherine’s control that led to her execution—from diplomatic pressure and international politics to the long-festering resentments against the queen’s household at court.

Including a forgotten text of Catherine’s confession in her own words, color illustrations, family tree, map, and extensive notes, Young and Damned and Fair changes our understanding of one of history’s most famous women while telling the compelling and very human story of complex individuals attempting to survive in a dangerous age.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Surprising revelations abound in this audio biography of Catherine Howard, the fifth wife of Henry VIII, including a recently discovered confession of her offenses in her own words. Narrator Jenny Funnell does a good job of creating sixteenth-century English life for listeners so that they understand the life of women in this time period and, in particular, the life of a daughter of nobility. Funnell uses a sympathetic voice to portray Catherine as a real person who was beautiful but misguided by the people she trusted…This is a good listening experience for Tudor enthusiasts.” AudioFile
“With exemplary skill, Gareth Russell puts clear blue water between his and other, more romantically inspired treatments of Catherine Howard’s story by using the workings of her household as a framework for his interpretation of her sixteen-month period as Henry’s queen.” Times Literary Supplement (London)
“To the vivid phrasing of a novelist he adds a forensic eye for fact and an encyclopedic knowledge of the personalities of the late Henrician court…Russell is a formidable new talent from whom big things can be expected, surely.” BBC History Magazine
“A robust portrait of a complex individual…a painstakingly thorough and original revaluation of both Catherine and of the mad scramble by the members of her household to protect themselves rather than their queen.” Booklist

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Gareth Russell

Author Bio: Gareth Russell

Gareth Russell was educated at Oxford University and Queens University, Belfast. He is a historian, novelist, and playwright. He is the author of The Ship of Dreams, Young and Damned and Fair, The Emperor, and An Illustrated Introduction to the Tudors. He lives in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download
Category: Nonfiction/Biography & Autobiography
Runtime: 15.96
Audience: Adult
Language: English