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Six Tudor Queens: Anna of Kleve, Queen of Secrets

Six Tudor Queens, Book 4
Narrated by: Esther Wane
Series: Six Tudor Queens, Book 4
Length: 18 hrs and 32 mins
Categories: History, Europe
4.5 out of 5 stars (137 ratings)

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Summary

Alison Weir, historian and author of the Sunday Times best sellers Katherine of Aragon: The True Queen, Anne Boleyn: A King's Obsession and Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen, paints a spellbinding portrait of Anna of Kleve, Henry VIII's fourth queen.  

A German Princess with a guilty secret.

The King is in love with Anna's portrait, but she has none of the accomplishments he seeks in a new bride.       

She prays she will please Henry, for the balance of power in Europe rests on this marriage alliance.       

But Anna's past is never far from her thoughts, and the rumours rife at court could be her downfall. Everyone knows the King won't stand for a problem queen.       

Anna of Kleve.

The fourth of Henry's Queens. 

Her story. 

Acclaimed, best-selling historian Alison Weir draws on new evidence to conjure a startling image of Anna as you've never seen her before. A charming, spirited woman, she was loved by all who knew her - and even, ultimately, by the King who rejected her.      

History tells us she was never crowned.    

But her story does not end there.       

Six tudor Queens.

Six novels.

Six years.

©2019 Alison Weir (P)2019 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

Critic reviews

"This six-book series looks likely to become a landmark in historical fiction." (The Times)

"Alison Weir makes history come alive as no one else." (Barbara Erskine)

"Weir is excellent on the little details that bring a world to life." (Guardian)

What listeners say about Six Tudor Queens: Anna of Kleve, Queen of Secrets

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The Most Fortunate

Well, I've just finished listening to this brilliant book and I am not ashamed to say that the final few minutes of this wonderfully told story had tears slowly running down my cheeks. There has been one, perhaps two other books I have had the pleasure to read that have elicited such a response so it is testimony indeed to the beautifully portrayed character of Anna of Cleaves that Alison Weir has masterfully written.

I have to now say that this fourth book in the Six Queens series has surpassed my enjoyment of all before it in this epic series. Perhaps the ultimate irony of all is how Anna of Cleaves was short lived as a queen and wife of Henry but outlived all other queens as well as witness the reign of no less than four monarchs during her life. I think Anna of Cleaves is overlooked when considering Henry's six wives given how short her marriage was to him and many would thus consider her to be largely irrelevant. I, too, did wonder beforehand how Weir could put together a book of such length given my understanding of her place in history but was so pleased to find how superbly well Weir fleshed out Anna's character.

As I've said before with respect to these fictionalised treatments based around historical fact stories, this way of portraying such historical figures really allows the reader to see these as real people with real lives and with such esteemed historians as Alison Weir at the helm, you know that any fictionalized elements will be both be woven seamlessly together and very plausibly with the known historical facts.


Anne Boleyn's motto may have been "The Most Happy" but surely Anna of Cleaves should be "The Most Fortunate". She had her troubles in later life with money and died far too young but did far better than any of Henry's other queens I think

Esther Wane did a wonderful job of narration with convincing German and French accents. However, one minor discrepancy I did note was that the Margaret Douglas character lost her Scottish accent compared to her rendition in the prior book in the series. This appears to be either an oversight in the production given Douglas's Scottish heritage or maybe the narrator wasn't able to render a decent Scottish accent.

This story really surprised and pleased me and was rather an unexpected treat given my very little knowledge of this woman. Weir has worked such magic here with Henry's fourth wife and I really liked the person she has been shown to be in this excellent story.




2 people found this helpful

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Not sure how much of this is true!

I’ve read many books about the Tudor Queens but this one is by far the most unusual. I can only assume that much is made up and maybe a bit far fetched. Some of the stories cannot be true as I have never heard the likes of it before. I still enjoyed the book though as it is well written and read.

1 person found this helpful

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Incredible

My Favourite of the series so far. The language, costume, the setting, the description is so vivid. It's really as if you know the ins and out Queen Anna's life. Absolutely fab.

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Did she really?

Book 4 of Alison Weir's Six Wives of Henry VIII was better than expected. I've been watching the boxset of The Tudors and we have watched the series covering Anne of Kleves so this book covers nicely who Anne of Kleves really was, to a point.

I was pleasantly surprised to read about wife 5, Catherine Howard and wife 6 Catherine Parr in this book and also the reigns of Edward and Mary with a quick mention of Jane (the 7 day queen).

This book is classed as fiction and I'm guessing what is a great biv part of fiction is .... well, I won't say as you'll have to read or listen to that yourself.

enjoyable narrative with deep and light tones of voice to cover both genders.

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A true survivor

What an amazing woman, a true survivor. Kind and charming and clever her life in this time period, was long because of it. Makes me think of her, with so much respect.

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Anna of Kleve

The story of the wives of Henry VIII continues in this series which has been intricately researched by Alison Weir. I went to a talk by the author about Anna of Kleve and she was so passionate about her and knew her subject so well that I knew that the story would not disappoint. The fiction fills in the gaps between the facts in a way that is wholly believable and gripping. The narrator is my favourite so far in the series, and brought the emotion and drama to the story that drives me to keep listening, and has me wanting to get back to it as soon as possibke.

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Disappointing

It started out not too badly despite the flight of fantasy, but soon succeeded in being both far-fetched and boring. We are used to better historical fiction these days. I abandoned it.

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Spellbinding

A fantastic book to listen too really enjoyed learning more about this great lady and found it hard to switch off! Highly recommend.

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Thoroughly enjoyable

Yet again a good novel about a much maligned and ridiculed queen. I’ve heard and read all in this series so far and look forward to the next. Alison weird books are always easy to read and the narrator in the audiobooks is excellent.

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She'll become your friend

Such a moving, masterful tale, that at the end I cried. Anna becomes a dear friend as you are taken through her trials and tribulations until the bittersweet end.

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  • Jennifer Olson
  • 24-06-19

Best of the series

This is a great twist on Anma's story. Really nice storytelling. Makes me wish that was the real story.