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Virgin And The Crab

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  • Posted August 19, 2011

    Synopsis for a great novel

    SYNOPSIS 'The brilliant young mathematician and astronomer John Dee has one overwhelming obsession: liberty. Abandoned and humiliated, Elizabeth Tudor has one simple aim: survival. This is their story. Against the background of the English Reformation, and threatened by a vengeful and unforgiving Queen, the mysterious brotherhood of the Rose Lodge attempts to guide the nation towards enlightenment and stability. Here, the special alchemy of the Virgin and the Crab works its magic: growing from childhood friendship, through adolescent flirtation, to mutual respect and admiration as together they prepare to sacrifice everything for the world they wish to inherit.'

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 1, 2011

    Best Elizabeth I Book I've Read

    The book starts out with a List of Players which, thank you Robert Parry, I definitely used. I love history but am not a huge Tudor fan as some others out there. So when they refer to, say, the Earl of Devonshire, I know exactly who they are talking about. The time span follows Elizabeth as a small child, through the death of her half brother Edward VI, King of England, to the fateful reign of Jane Grey, to the succession of Queen Mary and through her death to Elizabeth's ascension.

    This book is so originally written. I mean, it reads like a play. Not like Shakespeare or anything but it's written in present tense, which as odd as that sounds totally works. There are main chapters but a lot of the chapters have Acts and Interludes which I really enjoyed.

    Basically what this all means is that I remember this book like I've seen it played out before me. For instance, when John Dee first meets Elizabeth when they are just children. Elizabeth is crying over the recent death of Katherine Howard by her father, Henry VIII. That scene is just awesome. Then later after they are much older there is a scene I love. John Dee had taught Elizabeth how to send secret messages through groupings of flowers. So when Queen Mary is on the throne and Elizabeth is pretty much under house arrest, Dee sneaks into to see Elizabeth disguised as one of the many gardeners. There they pass flowers back and forth wordlessly and you know they are sending each other messages. I just loved scenes like this in this book.

    It also does an amazing job of telling the whole story by not just following John Dee or Elizabeth but by following most of the characters. I found this gave me such a well-rounded view of all the tension and politics going on at the time. It's absolutely amazing that history turned out the way it did. It's shocking all the events these characters went through and survived how they did.

    Towards the end of the book, Robert Dudley says something that I just chuckled at because it so fit this book.

    "And yet I do wonder how it has all come to pass just as you and Cecil said it would," Robert observes, "like the unfolding of some great drama or history play! It is astonishing!"

    I absolutely adored this book and can't wait to read another book by Robert Parry. My only disappointment with this book is that with so many other books on this subject, this gem might get overlooked.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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