Saturday, May 21, 2011

Biography Book Review 3

The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers by Margaret George

Reviewed by Blaga Todorova

Image courtesy

Book Details

  • Title : The Autobiography of Henri VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
  • Author :Margaret George
  • Paperback: 960 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 1st edition (September 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780312194390
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312194390
  • ASIN: 0312194390
  • Book Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.2 x 1.7 inches 
About the author - Margaret George /born in 1943 in Nashville, Tennessee/ is American historian and historical novelist, specializing in epic fictional biographies. Her first published novel is The Autobiography of Henry VIII, in 1986. Twenty-five years after its publication, it is still influential and was at the top of the fans’ recommended Henry VIII fiction list for “The Tudors” TV miniseries. Her books show careful research almost qualifying for non-fiction standards, enough length to give perspective to the subject’s life and colorful imagery.

About the book - Margaret George tells the story about Henri VIII, the attractive and charismatic man - king of England, who separated the Church of England from the Catholic Church, because he couldn't divorce his first wife and marry the one he loved. A man who was married six times and beheaded two of his wives, thinking mostly of a child born, a son, a heir. The book is memoirs distributed with comments from Henri's confidant, Will Somers. Lovely combination of history facts and drama of the characters lives, pages filled with the scent of pleasures and power.

My view about the book - Henri VIII is my favorite royalty, the period he lived and ruled England is my favorite part of history. Almost every book, note, fact I've read about Henri VIII presents him like a mighty, egotistical man, horrible dictator. I haven't heard about another novel sympathetic to the king before, but Margaret George offered / at least to me/ the pleasure to see my history hero in a better light. The book also covers Henri's entire life and it's filled with facts I absolutely enjoyed reading.

It has been in print for the past 25 years and it continues to be the best book about Henri VIII. I strongly recommend, if you have the opportunity, purchase it.

You can order The Autobiography of Henry VIII at these online locations:


Information sources used:




Jingle said...

lovely and thoughtful,


Thanks for the the efforts.

you rock.

Li said...

I'm a big fan of M George. She really puts in the time doing research, enriching her stories with detail and well-thought out dialogue, and trying to present historical figures in as fair a way as possible. Henry VIII was a helluva a ruler, and many of the actions and decisions in his personal life simply HAVE to be viewed in the context of the times, not by modern day values. This book is a really great read; I think some people are put off by it's length, but it flows so well and is so absorbing that I wish more would give it a try.

KB said...

I love autobiographies.

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Kittie Howard said...

Thank you for stopping by and for your lovely comment. I also thank you for the invite to participate in your Thursday fest. I'm very receptive to the idea, but, honest truth be told, right now it's a push to post what I'm doing - my Louisiana farm is just outside the flood plain - but so many I know are inside the plain - that I'm caught up in this event's long emotion. I mean, I'm not sitting around crying and so on, but I am distracted.

In the meantime, my eyes popped when I read about Margaret George's book. I'm hooked on the Tudor Period, but missed her book. I loooove long, page-turning books. What a feast this is going to be. Thank you!!

Unknown said...

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

Happy Sunday.