Hand, Cynthia, et. al. My Lady Jane. New York: HarperTeen, 2016.
Hardcover | $17.99 USD | ISBN013: 978-0062391742 | 491 pages | Historical Fiction/Fantasy
My Lady Jane is one of those crazy mish-mash books that I did not expect to work…but somehow it just does, with the authors somehow managing to believably twist history to provide a victory for those who were wronged, while still seeing that the most important elements remain (relatively) intact.
The three lead characters are all wonderful, and I loved going on this journey with them as they defeat evil and find themselves and their purpose in the process. Jane’s character is well-read and sympathetic, and it’s nice to get a take on her that’s much more fleshed out, but still feels reminiscent of what I know of her from her mentions in the Tudor works I had read before. And I love the twist on Gifford to make him a more sympathetic romantic hero, along with his own hurdles to overcome.
By far biggest surprise for me was Edward. He’s always been presented largely as a young boy-king controlled by the opinions of his advisers, and only beginning to come into his own, with his death ending any potential he may have had to grow as a ruler. And I like that there is some of that here, but I like how he is given the chance to evolve and see that he really was only made heir to the throne due to an accident of birth, not because he was the truly capable monarch some of his forebears were.
I would recommend this to anyone who also love historical fiction, but is open to new and unexpectedly funny takes on the darker and sometimes little discussed figures and events of history.