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Khanh the Killjoy

The Queen's Mistake: In the Court of Henry VIII - Diane Haeger The most unrealistic portrayal of Catherine that I've read besides Philippa Gregory's version.(Not the first Catherine, I meant the one who got beheaded. Oh, wait. The other one who got beheaded, this doesn't need a spoiler tag, does it?)For a book entitled The QUEEN'S Mistake, there's not much of the book in which Catherine is actually queen. It's more of a retelling of her past, and a veeeeeeeeeeeeery long and dull courtship between Catherine and Thomas Culpepper. The long and dull courtship is largely adolescent, with much ado about I-love-you-but-I-can't-have-you-let's-run-away-together! /insert lovesick sigh here.It got more than a little trying after the not-so-secret courtship persists through half the book, with the two kids thinking they're being so discreet the way adolescents do, and everyone else but Henry knowing about their relationship. Catherine comes off as far too innocent and the author does everything she can to make light of her previous relationships. Oh, everyone falls in love and into bed with the young Catherine in her grandmother's house? No idea how that happened. Pfft. It's all because she's lonely and she misses her dead mommy who died 10 years ago.At court, she's portrayed as guileless and devoted to her queen, Anne of Cleves. The villain, Mary Lascelles, is one-dimensional in her wickedness and determination to bring Catherine down. Francis Dereham is also lacking in development. There's not much of him before he shows up in a few scenes looking for a payout.Altogether, I didn't find anything about this book that stood out. The characters are one-dimensional, and the writing unexceptional; historical fiction needs the added edge of good writing, since they retell a story we have known before.