The Queen's Lady (Thornleigh) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading The Queen's Lady (Thornleigh) on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Queens Lady [Mass Market Paperback]

Barbara Kyle
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition CDN $4.59  
Paperback, Bargain Price CDN $7.18  
Mass Market Paperback --  
Join Amazon Student in Canada

Book Description

Nov. 24 2009
London, 1527. Marry or serve: for Honor Larke, the choice is clear. Unwilling to perish of boredom as an obedient wife, she leaves the home of her ward to attend Her Majesty, Queen Catherine of Aragon. But life at Henry VIII's court holds more than artifice for an intelligent observer, and Honor knows how to watch--and when to act. . .

Angered by the humiliation heaped upon her mistress as Henry cavorts with Anne Boleyn and presses Rome for a divorce, Honor volunteers to carry letters to the Queen's allies. It's a risky game, but Honor is confident--until she's proven wrong by dashing courtier Richard Thornleigh--a man who awakens her heart, and who also has something to hide. . . Swept into a tide of intrigue and danger that stretches across Europe, the Queen's lady is about to learn everything: about pride, passion, greed--and the conscience of the King. . .

"Weaves a fast-paced plot through some of the most harrowing years of English history." --Judith Merkle Riley

"Excellent, exciting, compellingly readable." --Ellen Jones

"Riveting, heady, glorious, inspired." --Susan Wiggs

Includes a Reading Group Guide!

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Product Details

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Born just as the violent overthrow of the Catholic Church begins in 1527 Tudor England, Honor Larke is alternately pulled and pushed by her conscience: she wants to save heretics from burning, but desires to see her once beloved guardian, Thomas More, punished for his reforming ways. Meanwhile, Erasmus, Catherine of Aragon, Henry Tudor, Anne Boleyn and More himself charm, pummel and sweep their way through history. Fully grown, Honor meets and employs Thomas Thornleigh, a merchant and courtier who she vastly misjudges—at first. Firsthand experience with the horrors of persecution on both sides forces Honor into an unusual decision of where to put her faith. Compelling narrative and characterization make Kyle's debut comparable with the likes of Margaret George and Kathleen Windsor. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4 star
2 star
1 star
4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars disappointing Nov. 11 2013
By tinky
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
if you are a fan of historical fiction, Phillipa Gregory books are far more engaging. this one was predictable and the heretic theme very preachy/repetitive throughout.
Was this review helpful to you?
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very accurate and interesting. Keeps you on the edge of your seat with all the historical truths, problems, intrigues, and inner plots. Excellent reading.
Was this review helpful to you?
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Uneven Historical fiction Jan. 17 2009
First off, the main character, Honor, wasn't born in 1527 as the book description above seems to imply, the story starts in about 1517 when Honor is 7 then jumps forward 10 years. It's the story of a woman, Honor Larke, brought up as a ward of Thomas More and serving Queen Katherine of Aragon. She loses a childhood friend/protector to the heretic fires and, horrified, she goes through life holding bitterness and anger for the people she discovers were behind it, More in particular. She leads a double life, serving the Queen and working underground to rescue people accused of heresy and it becomes an obsession. It explores the rise of the Reformation and the back stabbing politics. She meets Richard Thornleigh who helps her with her reckless (as he sees it) plans and with whom she eventually falls in love. That doesn't go smoothly either.

It's not a bad read but near the last quarter it starts to get a bit heavy and sometimes preachy with too much philosopy that i ended up skipping over a bit. It's almost as if the last part of the book was written by someone else. It didn't have the same flow at all. Or maybe it's just me.
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable fiction March 6 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I found this book quite enjoyable. As the reader, you get swept up in the moment. A great page turner. The writing is so realistic you forget it's fiction. Can't wait for the sequel.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.7 out of 5 stars  38 reviews
51 of 60 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A trashy potboiler as subtle as a brick through a stained glass window Sept. 25 2008
By J. Renaud - Published on
I'm a big fan of Judith Merkle Riley and Susan Wiggs, and I took notice when I saw their blurbs on the cover of "The Queen's Lady." However, I have been told since that a lot of times writers are paid up front for blurbs, without having read the book in question. I certainly hope that's the case for Ms. Riley and Ms. Wiggs, because the "Lady" really is a tramp, and not worth your hard-earned dollars. If you must read it, check it out at the library, but don't say I didn't warn you.

There's no shortage of plot- in fact, there's too much of it. The novel lurches from incident to incident, and comes across like a creepy hybrid of "A Man for All Seasons" and Paul Verhoeven's "Flesh and Blood." Honor Larke, the "heroine"- and I use the term loosely- is set upon by disaster after disaster within the first few chapters, including being orphaned, kidnapped, raped, and having her inheritance stolen from her. She manages to become Sir Thomas More's ward, and although she thinks More is the best daddy she ever had, he has the hots for her. She kind of has the hots for him too, but before we are subjected to a scene of them in bed together, she finds out he was the guy responsible for burning her best friend at the stake (which is described in disgusting detail). I guess that's kind of understandable why that would sour things.

Anyway, Honor decides that she must become the Savior of the Lutherans, and runs around rescuing Lutherans from being arrested (sort of like a Scarlet Pimpernel in a farthingale, I suppose). However, at the same time she's Catherine of Aragon's #1 lady-in-waiting, hence the title. Yet Honor decides that she must bring Protestantism into England, that Queen Cathy is cool and all, but she must sacrifice her friend to the greater good of routing the Evil Catholic Church from Old Blighty's shores; and part of that entails buddying up with Thomas Cromwell and doing her best to forward Anne Boleyn's ambitions. I found it amusing, in a way, that this scheming, backstabbing character had the name of "Honor," but no one in the book comments on the irony of that. I also found it amusing that she's able to do all of this, without her guardian More having a clue as to what she's up to. Does this guy live in a cave, or what? If he's so crazy about her as we're led to believe, wouldn't he be keeping tabs on what she's doing?

Most of the book is concerned with Honor rushing hither and thither, rescuing Protestants while she talks about how much she hates More. There's a romantic interest, some guy named Richard Thornleigh, who's saddled with a crazy wife who dies conveniently. Honor is such an awesome gal that she proposes to Richard two days after his wife kicks it, even though he protests that his wife died only two days before. But she exclaims that she's dead, they're alive, that they must live for today, etc. Of course, we are supposed to believe that Honor is assertive and filled with joie de vivre or something, and not a callous, manipulative bitch. I am sure the author means well, but the characterization is really very poorly done.

It just gets worse as the book goes along. Honor gets into Big Trouble and has to flee the country to Germany, where she ends up in Munster, among a commune of lunatic Anabaptists. The book actually gets quite interesting here, because this a time and place you never see in historical fiction. But after a great deal of excitement, Honor realizes that religion sucks, there is no soul, and GOD IS A LIE! It is all absolutely as subtle as a brick hurled through a stained glass window, and I threw the book against the wall at that moment. I hate books with an agenda, and the author of "Lady" shoves hers down your throat.

The ending of the book comes pretty quickly after that, with our hero and "heroine" galloping off into the sunset (but not before a final confrontation with Sir Thomas More, who gropes her, wallows in his own misery, and hallucinates the "imaginary" heavens, to show us what a pathetic, screwed-up martyr he is). I have never felt that strongly about More, but I am offended Ms. Kyle feels it necessary to trash the man and his beliefs, just to make those of her heroine (and presumably, her own) look better.

She does try to assert in the end that More's immortality lies not in his obviously wrong Catholic faith, but in his brilliant book "Utopia." If it is true that one's immortality depends upon on the quality of the books one leaves behind, then I'm afraid that Ms. Kyle is clearly doomed, as "The Queen's Lady" is trash. Avoid at your own peril. There are many other books by Judith Merkle Riley and Susan Wiggs to read instead.
16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars So Bad I couldn't even Finish it! April 21 2009
By N. Abramson - Published on
I admire Sir Thomas More so when I saw that this book was somewhat circulated around him I got all excited, but I read a few chapters and I litterally felt my eyes were burning. One Honor wishes she was Thomas More's wife rather than Alice Middleton and fantasizes about him sexually. Yeah like Sir Thomas More would commit adultery. Then a few chapters later she hates his guts, like she was bipolar and once again should one side of More rather than both sides.

I stopped at this part where Thomas More and Henry VIII where on this rickity Bridge while the sweating sickness killing thousands around them... doesn't make since why would Henry the king risk himself getting sick. To make Matters worse she makes Thomas almost fall through the bridge and Henry is the hero and saves him. Knowing how ridiculous the plot was I thought the author was going to make Henry and Thomas do the nasty on the bridge next. I stopped there and couldn't go on.

Anyway what I am saying is if you are admirer and a fan of Sir Thomas More...don't read this book.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not At All The Same Old Tudor Fiction!! Aug. 26 2008
By Lezlie - Published on
When Sir Thomas More's ward, Honor Larke, chooses to become a lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon rather than marry, she gets caught up in King Henry's "Great Matter" in ways she would have never dreamed possible. While King Henry tramples the laws of God and man in his desperation to divorce Catherine and marry Anne Boleyn, Honor uses her position and contacts at the religiously divided court to secretly save "heretics" from being burned at the stake. But what will she do when the accusing finger is inevitably pointed at her?

It is a great prize when a Tudor fiction junkie can find an exceptional book that looks beyond the famous figures of the times to the people who were simply trying to live their lives in the shadow of a selfish king's destructive behavior. The Queen's Lady digs into the heart of the religious turmoil taking place during Henry's reign and shows the reader a frightening world of greed, fanaticism, and intolerance and heroic deeds in defense of justice and reason. This is the kind of Tudor fiction that keeps us coming back to the well!
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars deep look at King Henry's first marriage Aug. 2 2008
By Harriet Klausner - Published on
In 1527 London, women have few choices they can make. To Honor Larke she can select between a marriage that sounds like incarceration or serving Her Majesty, Queen Catherine of Aragon. She chooses the latter as the court will be exciting while marriage will be boring; in either case she knows she must obey.

After informing her guardian, Sir Thomas More, Honor joins the court of Henry VIII. However, she quickly is appalled at how poorly the monarch and his supplicants scorn the queen while kissing the king's butt. Honor becomes outraged when the King humiliates his wife by demanding Rome grant him a divorce while he plays around with Anne Boleyn. Loyal to her Queen and her friend, Honor carries letters to her Majesty's Queen's allies that if caught will behead her for seditious acts. All is well until that foppish cavalier whom she desires, Richard Thornleigh, catches her.

Intrigue, betrayal and avarice are the fuels of King Henry's court as THE QUEEN'S LADY quickly learns. Honor lives up to her name as she feels a strong loyalty to the tossed aside Queen and acts on her fidelity at the risk to her life. Thornleigh is actually a more interesting character than the title protagonist as the audience is not sure whether he is an early sixteenth century Pimpernel, a genuine fop, a traitor or a "secret agent". Fans of historical fiction with a romantic subplot enhancing the era will enjoy Barbara Kyle's deep look at King Henry's first marriage that had ramifications across Europe.

Harriet Klausner
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Hard to be a Lady Sept. 7 2008
By Paul Azzopardi - Published on
I do not read many historical novels but when I do I want one which manages to re-create the milieu, with an intriguing central character and a plot which twists and turns. I also got to like the author's style.

"The Queen's Lady" has all four ingredients. Kyle's main character in the book, Honor Larke, lives in turbulent times, amidst very good people and some very bad ones, and she tries to tip-toe her way through some very sharp places! Like many of us, Honor is torn between different passions and tries to keep sane while making headway through the conflicts around her. This keeps the book alive. As does Kyle's writing style, often elegant, sometimes real fast.

A great read - a great escape ! Go for it.
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Look for similar items by category