“A sumptuous historical novel anchored by its excellent depiction of Jane Seymour, Henry the VIII’s third queen . . . This is a must for all fans of Tudor fiction and history.”—Publishers Weekly
Ever since she was a child, Jane has longed for a cloistered life as a nun. But her large noble family has other plans, and as an adult, Jane is invited to the King’s court to serve as lady-in-waiting to Queen Katherine of Aragon. The devout Katherine shows kindness to all her ladies, almost like a second mother, which makes rumors of Henry’s lustful pursuit of Anne Boleyn—also lady-in-waiting to the queen—all the more shocking. For Jane, the betrayal triggers memories of a haunting incident that shaped her beliefs about marriage.
But once Henry disavows Katherine and secures Anne as his new queen—forever altering the religious landscape of England—he turns his eye to another: Jane herself. Urged to return the King’s affection and earn favor for her family, Jane is drawn into a dangerous political game that pits her conscience against her desires. Can Jane be the one to give the King his long-sought-after son, or will she be cast aside like the women who came before her?
Bringing new insight to this compelling story, Alison Weir marries meticulous research with gripping historical fiction to re-create the dramas and intrigues of the most renowned court in English history. At its center is a loving and compassionate woman who captures the heart of a king, and whose life will hang in the balance for it.
Praise for Jane Seymour, The Haunted Queen
“Bestselling [Alison] Weir’s impressive novel shows why Jane deserves renewed attention [and] illustrates Jane’s unlikely journey from country knight’s daughter to queen of England. . . . From the richly appointed decor to the religious tenor of the time, the historical ambience is first-rate.”—Booklist (starred review)
“Deft, authoritative biographical fiction . . . a dramatic and empathic portrait of Jane Seymour.”—Kirkus Reviews
This third volume in the Six Tudor Queens series, following books on Katherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn, is a sumptuous historical novel anchored by its excellent depiction of Jane Seymour, Henry the VIII's third queen. Weir begins the story of Jane, the daughter of a wealthy knight, by exploring a historical but unclear family scandal from Jane's youth, which Weir imagines to be an affair between Jane's father and sister-in-law. Throughout, she paints Jane as a fairly innocent young woman, even imagining that she may have entertained life as a nun when she was a girl. Weir devotes most of the plot to Jane's time as a maid of honor, first to Queen Katherine and then, after Katherine's divorce, to Queen Anne. A church traditionalist, Jane attempts to use her influence on Henry (once they do finally marry) to restore Princess Mary to his good graces and to limit the divestitures of the monasteries. Of course, being a novel of the Tudors, there is a great deal of description devoted to the lavish clothing, foods, architecture, and pageantry of the royal court. Weir also does not stint on the various scandals and uproars of the time. This is a must for all fans of Tudor fiction and history.