Rating: 3.7 Stars
Lady Jane Grey, the 16 year old royal from the 1500s is to be married off to Gifford Du
dley, the son of the advisor to the king in great haste, as Kind Edward appears to be dying rapidly of “The Affliction”. It becomes quite apparent early on that there’s a lot more to this story than a romantic couple finding a way to love each other through the difficulties of an arranged marriage. Through an added fantasy element, the “E∂ians” (humans who can take animal form), pose a threat to the society itself, and thus other actors come into play.
So this comical alternate history on Lady Jane Grey certainly captivated me. The premise I found fascinating, and the magical elements to be thoroughly curious. I did enjoy the three perspectives selected for this tale, it showed an adorable budding romance, three unique individuals, and strong contrasts to the piece. Even when the characters were together, the book flowed well.
I particularly enjoyed the character of G. Although Jane was sweet, and Edward developed nicely throughout the book, G lends himself to have some of the better more entertaining scenes.
There were a few believability issues, that I found it difficult to see past. For example, when Edward meets Gracie, she doesn’t question the validity of his proclamation, she just jumps on board, ready to spring into action without much convincing.
My other difficulty, was the writing style. The constant interruptions from the story tellers I found more obnoxious than humorous. I was far more interested in the story than the colour commentary and the unnecessary distractions just detracted from the reading experience.
Also, it’s hard not to see the countless similarity (fantasy element excluded) to the 1986 film starring Helena Bonham Carter. Lady Jane
Recommendation: If you like a good period piece from this time period, you’ll probably get a good kick out of it, so long as continual comments from the authors don’t marr your reading experience.