The Thistle and the Rose (Tudor Saga, #8)

ISBN: 0609810227
ISBN 13: 9780609810224
By: Jean Plaidy

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Reader's Thoughts


Plaidy has written the character of Margaret as a vapid and somewhat maddening woman, ruled by her desires. She doesn't seem to acknowledge the link between her impulsive behaviour and the undesirable circumstances she continuously finds herself in. But, overall it was a great rendition, and I have no complaints.

Lisa James

For a book that was number 8 in a series I'd never heard of before, this actually worked very well as a stand alone book. This is the story of Margaret of Scotland, older sister of King Henry VIII of England. You generally don't see too many books about her, so this one was rather refreshing. She'd be considered a fairly modern woman by our standards, 3 marriages, 2 in defiance of her much married brother, & of the Crown of Scotland to boot. However, all 3 of those were doomed to failure, as the poor woman had to endure disappointment in the guise of her husbands' infidelities & children by those dalliances. She had children of her own, James V of Scotland, by her first husband James IV, Lady Margaret Douglas, by her 2nd husband Angus Douglas, & 2 by her third & last husband, Henry(Harry) Stuart, but it never gave their names or what happened to them in the story.I also learned that this author is but one of three pen names the ACTUAL author used to write under, & she was VERY prolific. I really enjoyed this, since I'm a history geek, & a fan of historical romance, & I'm going to HAVE to go read more of her books!


Ok, let's just talk about how appallingly dull the last half of this book was. The story follows Margaret Tudor of England who marries James Stuart of Scotland. I learned a ton, but oh my gosh, everyone cheats on each other. England, Scotland, and France were pretty much founded on infidelity and the populations rose from illegitimate children who's dads couldn't keep their parts to themselves.Margaret's life is a bit sad. She's so fickle, it'll drive one mad when reading all the ways she changes her mind. Back and forth, back and forth, good Lord, how droll?I learned a lot though, and I did enjoy the story. eh.


This is a historical novel about King Henry VIII's older sister Margaret who is married off to Scotland. I'd read about Mary, the younger one, before, so i was interested to read more about this sister. This they were just so messed up! There's so many books, movies and shows about them just because if they existed now, they'd be the hit reality show. The spoiled, self-indulgent rich kids living off their daddy's money, who think that no rules apply to them. Margaret seemed even more like her brother than mary did, she did pretty much the same things with the same motivation, only she happened to be female. still, i'm surprised she got away with as much as she did. I feel like maybe this book was dramatacized a bit more than it should have been, writing only ok, but it was entertaining, i liked it.

Carol Mauro

A queen who only found infidelity, The Thistle and the Rose: The Story of Margaret, Princess of England, Queen of Scotland (A Novel of the Tudors) One after another of Queen Margaret 's husbands were unfaithful. She was clearly moved by passion and made her decisions for marriage based upon lust which she mistook for love. As I read the book I started to think: "not again" but to my dismay, she would fall for her weakness. The clans of Scotland were powerful and deceitful. Margaret was easily swayed. There was little substance to her character or the book.


Thoroughly engrossing; a rip in the fabric of time allowing a glimpse into the past, and providing a true human nature to such legendary historical figures.


A bit rough getting through this one. The author, experienced as she was, did a lot more telling than showing. Lots of summary of action rather than actual action. I did enjoy getting to know the characters as Plaidy imagined them.

Mary Lilly

Love this series of the Tudors!Love this series of the Tudors!I have always loved Jean Plaidy's books. I'm making my way through all of them on my kindle...this time I know they won't get sold at a garage sale, and I get to rediscover them all over again!

Peggie Ross

Another step along my personal journey to read as many of the Jean Plaidy books as possible. Currently I am working on the Tudors. I adore these novels because I always learn many things about the lives of the characters. They are well written and rapid reads despite what sometimes are very long books.


Thought it was going to be about Queen Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots, but it followed Margaret Tudor, daughter of Henry VII and sister of Henry VIII, as she becomes Queen of Scotland. I enjoyed Plaidy's writing as it was not nearly as repetitive as P. Gregory's. Not sure I cared for Margaret herself, but that could be the way Plaidy wrote the character. An extensive bibliography was included so I am sure this historical fiction was highly researched.


Confession--I'm slowly becoming obsessed with British history, specifically the Tudor/King Henry VIII era, mainly because I've started watching "The Tudors." I began watching it because Jonathan Rhys Meyers is beautiful, but then enjoyed the show due to it's actual content. Soooo, I'm now reading books on this era.I loved this book and have heard that the other books by her are just as great. A lot of historical facts, but a great, heart-wrenching story. I felt Magaret Tudor's pain the whole time! She's a character I hated and loved. I think I even cried a little.


I think I would have liked this book better if it had been about a period in history I cared more about or knew less about.Ms. Plaidy's facts seem to all be in order, but the perspective is necessarily narrow (what would a Queen know about the lives of the peasants) and the characters come off as a bit shallow and self-absorbed. (Which, credit where it's due, they may very well have been.)Also, in this book's defense, it's quite far into a series I haven't read the rest of, so it's entirely possible that if I'd started at the beginning I would have been able to build up the sense of depth I was missing.

Rosemarie Short

It is worth starting this by saying I am a huge fan of Jean Plaidy. For her time she was a fabulous figure, writing despite not obtaining a full education, dedicating her life to transforming solid books of heavily compacted history into novels with enough breathing room to garner interest; without being fluffy, as historical fiction these days has a tendency of being. However despite this I found The Thistle and the Rose to be much lighter, more empty, than previous instalments. This isn't to say I didn't enjoy this novel. There are times, particularly when the Scottish uprisings are taking place and political turmoil is rife throughout the land, that this is a gripping read. However I felt the weakening of Margaret Tudor's character, by putting her keen political mind in second place to her obsession with men, a little off putting. For all I know Plaidy may have found compelling evidence to that being true, in which case I would bow to her superior knowledge. However I cannot help but compare this to her Eleanor of Acquitaine instalments, a woman who also had many lovers, but was written as strong, powerful and shrewd.That being said I sympathised with Margaret's plight, consistently betrayed by the men in her life, often both her and her children playing the roles of political pawns, an unfortunate product of the times. All the characters were well written, with the years where Margaret courted Albany in an almost combative, obsessional romance especially interesting to me. Yet I yearned for more and will look forward to returning to her other novels, hoping to find it.


OK. I like that it does not go into explicit details behind closed doors. For Historical FIction this is somewhat hard to find. It is the polotics, religion and marriage of those times that fastenate me, not the made-up love scenerios.


I almost didn't bother to finish this one...It was almost too simplified, and not at all engaging.

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