Mary, Queen of France (Tudor Saga, #9)

ISBN: 0609810219
ISBN 13: 9780609810217
By: Jean Plaidy

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Reader's Thoughts


This is my first Jean Plaidy novel, and while i plan to read more, I am a little disappointed in the story telling in this particular novel. Perhaps it is because this has been written before my generation (( am 24 and an avid historical fiction reader), but i found the writing a little bland. The story is so sensational and scandalous but she writes it too quickly, obviously conforming to a publisher's limit of pages. I found this book to read out this way... "Mary falls in love, Mary gets married away from lover to King of France, Mary marries her real love after King dies." I just wanted more drama. I understand that this isn't a Danielle Steel novel but I just wanted more juiciness.


I thght the book was ok. Although I did not like the style in which it was written.I felt like the beginning of the book was written to give me a feeling of the people Mary dealt with but it really did not talk too much from Mary's perspective. The end of the book was rushed and really gave no information on Mary and her life with Charles other than a quick glossing over of the fact that they were happy and Henry was getting angrier. II felt light the end was unsatisfying.I did however learn a bit more of the history of the Tudor dynasty. I also learned a bit about France.

Gail Amendt

I have read a lot about the Tudors, and have always been curious about Henry VIII's younger sister Mary, who was married off to the elderly King of France for political reasons, was quickly widowed, and then married the man of her own choosing. In an age when royal princesses were used as political pawns and never chose their own husbands, this made her a very rare creature. In most fiction about the Tudors, she appears as a minor character and this story is only briefly touched on, so I was glad to find that Jean Plaidy dedicated a book to Mary's story. As with all Plaidy's royal novels, this is a great history lesson made more readable by telling it as a personal story. I found the character development in this one to be little better than Plaidy's norm, and I found myself feeling that I really did know Mary by the end. I would have liked a somewhat longer novel so that we could have explored more of her husband Charles Brandon's character as well, but I suspect that the historical records do not contain enough material to allow this, and Jean Plaidy is known for diligent research and a high degree of accuracy. She does a very good job of explaining the political situation in France that resulted in Mary's marriage to a sick old man. No matter how much I read about the Tudors and other royals of that time, I am still shocked by the complete lack of autonomy for women, and have to really admire Mary Tudor for taking control of her own life against the wishes of her tyrannical brother.

Kaypea Ramsdale

I loved this book right up until the end. I could not put it down. The sad thing, is that I KNOW what happens to Mary Tudor (or Brandon, or Queen of France) - come on - it's history so if you don't know. . . I'm sorry I might ruin it for you, but I wanted that part of the story to be as rich as the rest. I mean, even the Tudors (the Showtime television show) made her death more dramatic (even if incorrect, but it's Showtime). Anyway - she was a fascinating character and Plaidy really showed that in the whole book except for that last bit. . . total let down. . .

Chris Miller

This is, I think, a less rich take on these people than what I've read previously. I did like the look into the context of France but I'm less sure about the tendency to write particularly women in this period as practically obsessive over one person most of their lives, whether that's love interest or son. Maybe it's accurate, I don't know, but especially when it's a love interest it rings false to me, maybe not when one or two do it, but on a large scale? I don't know. Anyway, I'd have liked more nuance in all the characters.

Miranda Diaz

A good, not fantastic read about Mary, Queen of France, focusing upon her challenges in love including her unwilling marriage to King Louis of France and her tormented love of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. The book gives great insight into her fierce and determined character, deep resentment of her station in life and desire for the simplicity of love. Book lacks much substance outside of this story, and a few too many poorly developed and short term characters to keep track, but a good read for those who love the Tudors and their machinations.


The love story of Mary, sister to Henry VIII, and hist best mate Charles Brandon. Enveloped in the story is also a substantial telling of how Francis Incame to the throne of France. Some might find this a bbit distracting from the main story, though I found myself wishing Plaidy had devoted a whole novel to it's telling.


I really love the story between Mary Tudor and Charles Brandon. It's a very sweet love story. I'm surprised there aren't more historical fiction w/ this story. I really enjoyed learning about them. This book was very good. And what I really liked was that it was clean. Not always the case w/ the Tudor's.

Gabrielle Blin

** spoiler alert ** The enchanting true story of my lovely Mary Tudor,Queen of France and Charles Brandon,Duke of Suffolk.I enjoyed this book but was hoping for a little more information about Mary's childhood and her life with Charles


I've been reading a lot of super long historical fiction lately, so it was a relief to read something very short for a change. I was thinking this was super short, then checked and it has 304 pages still, so you see my mind frame from those really long ones LOL. Besides the shortness, i wasn't a big fan of this book. It's about Mary, Henry VIII's little sister, and her marriages, and how she fell in love. We start off with Mary's story, then midway through, switch to an entirely different story about France, then bring Mary back in. It felt very choppy. Also, this seemed kind of frivolous, more of a romance than of any historical importance. It was just missing something, it was missing most things. I still read it, it wasn't THAT bad that I couldn't read it, but it seemed more chick lit to me, without the fun chick lit way of writing.

Darlene Fife rogers

So far the shortest Plaidy book I have read. I did enjoy the switch from a first person narrative to a third person narrative. Written more like a play with sections of the book labeled as scenes. Over all a good story that allows you to get to know the charters.


“Mary, Queen of France” is the story of Mary Tudor, Henry VIII's youngest sister, who was forced to marry Louis XII of France and then risked everything marrying for love Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk.I have always been fascinated by Mary and admired her courage, so I greatly enjoyed reading about her. I found the book to be just as delightful and as enjoyable as the others by Plaidy I've read so far. The story is divided in three parts. In the first we get to know Mary as a very young girl at the English Court. We see her close relationship with her brother and her falling in love with Brandon. Mary, who is charming, beautiful and always gay, leads a very merry life, except for one thing: she is a royal princess and so she is destined to marry for political reason. And Henry indeed betroths her to Louis XII of France, who is thirty years her senior. Mary is in despair, but at last accepts her fate on one condition: when Louis dies, she will marry whom she wishes.I must admit I was not completely happy with Mary. Especially at the beginning, she is not a very likeable heroine: she is spoiled, hot-tempered, insolent and reckless. Even though I felt sorry for her marrying Louis, she complained about it so much that after a while I became annoyed. And the fact that she constantly wished for his death was not very nice either – at least she felt a little sorry for it. All things considered, however, I still liked her for her boldness, wit, charm and determination. I was instead really satisfied about Mary's relationship with Henry. I have a soft spot for close brother/sister relationships, and in this case it is believable and well done. Mary's and Brandon's love story is a little confused: she falls hard for him and fights for him all her life, but Charles appears to be a weak man, even if he also seems to love her sincerely. He remains an ambiguous character – but he was so even in real life, so perhaps that was Plaidy's intent. However, Mary's devotion to Brandon, even if a little unmotivated, is so fierce and strong that I could not help but root for them. The second part is about Mary's time as Queen of France, even though it opens with a long excursus about Francois, the Dauphin of France, who has waited to be king his whole life and so is afraid of Louis's new marriage (if Louis gets a son, he will be king of France). In this part Francois, his mother Louise and his sister Marguerite are as important as Mary is. Louis is actually very kind to Mary, whom he adores, but the english princess can't help but wish constantly for his death. And she doesn't have to wait long, for the king dies after a few months. Henry appears to be already looking for a new husband for her sister, not caring about his promise, so Mary decides to marry Brandon secretly.The long time spent on Francois in this part took me by surprise at first, but I ended up enjoying it. It was nice learning more about him and his family. I found them all to be quite well developed. I also really loved reading about Mary playing them – she was positively wicked, but the joke was fun. In the third part Mary returns to England with her new husband. Henry is not very angry with them, and soon the three of them are again happy together. Mary and Charles, however, find themselves enjoying more a quiet life in the country with their children than one at the Court, mostly because Henry is becoming more cruel and dangerous. Their life proceeds mostly happily, and the book ends with Mary's death.I was glad to see Mary getting what she wanted, but I expected Henry to be more angry with her. The whole matter, which was presented to be such a big deal, was risolved way too easily in my opinion. I also wish Plaidy had developed more Mary's growing fear of Henry. We all know how Henry turned out to be in real life, but in the book his evolution wasn't much shown. Mary's sudden dislike and fear of her adored brother seemed a little out of place. It is a pity, because it could have been an interesting and fresh view on Henry's character.


I thought Mary's life was fascinating. And reading about her plight in life - at least initially - helped me get through a hard week! Funny that our little girls are obsessed with princesses when in reality, there were quite a few things that really weren't great about being a princess!

Louise Fry

I found this book very interesting and rich with background knowledge of the central characters - Mary Tudor, Dauphin Francis future king, King Louis as well. It was refreshing to once again learn at something in which I never knew about and I enjoyed reading about these interesting characters.At first I worried about the style of writing that Plaidy, would adopt even the style was old-fashioned with fancier words, I still felt enchanted with the story she was trying to put across and found in the end the style of writing was perfectly suited with in the book!I would not hesitate again to read any of her books as i thoroughly enjoyed this one


I was excited to read Mary, Queen of France, as I have not found many books on Henry VIII's little sister, and I was not disappointed with this one. Jean Plaidy brings the young princess to life demonstrating the head-strong Tudor sibling, much like her older brother, spirit and unwavering self confidence. A welcome surprise was the background story of the French Court where Mary finds herself married to the old king and pursued by the younger Dauphine.Skeptical of the love bond between Mary and Charles Brandon, the 1st Duke of Suffolk,(beyond forbidden passion) the romance was well written and enjoyable. Definitely will be reading more Plaidy

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