by Katherine Longshore

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In the court of King Henry VIII, nothing is free--
and love comes at the highest price of all.

When Kitty Tylney's best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII's heart and brings Kitty to court, she's thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. No longer stuck in Cat's shadow, Kitty's now caught between two men--the object of her affection and the object of her desire. But court is also full of secrets, lies, and sordid affairs, and as Kitty witnesses Cat's meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101572016
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 05/15/2012
Series: Royal Circle Series , #1
Sold by: Penguin Group
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 830,314
File size: 2 MB
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Katherine Longshore grew up on the northern California coast. At university, she created her own major in Cross-Cultural Studies and Communications, planning to travel and write. Forever. Four years, six continents, and countless pairs of shoes later, she went to England for two weeks, stayed five years, and discovered history. She now lives in California with her husband, two children, and a sun-worshiping dog.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“In modern times, Cat would most likely be a cheerleader; the king, captain of the football team. But the royal backdrop with historical underpinnings makes a far more interesting story…Readers can practically feel the embroidered ball gowns and hand-stitched lace.” –The Los Angeles Times

"I believe I found my new favorite series"-

“Longshore, who's clearly done her historical homework, takes full advantage of the Tudor standards. . . and surroundings. . . but Cat is a completely contemporary American teenager.”—BCCB

“Longshore writes a believable novel of historical fiction with well-developed characters and entertaining . . . plot twists.”—VOYA

“A good, juicy story . . . royally riveting for the reader.”—Booklist

“A substantive, sobering historical read, with just a few heaving bodices.”—Kirkus Reviews

Customer Reviews

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Gilt 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 37 reviews.
EverAfterEsther More than 1 year ago
Historical fiction is one of my THINGS. I love it! I could just eat it up with a spoon :) I’ve been reading it for years (historical fiction was one of my original favourites of reading – it’s one of the reasons I got hooked on books!) and I get giddy with excitement when I discover new YA historical fiction books – like Gilt! Gilt is a delightful look at a real story, with some imagination to bring it to life and fill in the blanks we don’t have factual answers for. I love historical fiction for the way it brings history to life and gives us a way to relate to it. And there are so many different perspectives to it! There never really is one “right” answer. Reasons to Read:  1. You’ll never think Tudor history is boring again: Tudor history actually isn’t boring at all. Not one bit! But I know that not everyone is as infatuated with history as some others are, and so the way Katherine Longshore brings history to life and from a youthful perspective is refreshing. Sometimes we forget that historical people were real at one time – they had similar struggles as we do, and teen ladies-in-waiting and queens are no exception. Catherine Howard is one of the least discussed of Henry VIII’s wives and I thought it was so neat that Katherine picked her to feature as a central character. And telling the story from her best friend Kitty? It worked perfectly for the book! 2. Luxurious and twisted: It’s never lost on Kitty how different her life has become as Cat moves up the social ladder to become Queen of England. Everything is so glamorous – like the way we picture Hollywood and the upper class echelons in modern day. But that doesn’t mean that it’s all beautiful. The positions are precarious and gossip can kill you – literally. The struggle as a woman and their historical position in society is shown in a very real, terrifying way. 3. Showcases the depth of friendship: Most of us have that friend – someone closer than a sister, like a “kindred spirit”. You don’t always love them, but you understand them and they you better than anyone else. How far would you go to protect your friend? From others? What about form herself? Kitty’s struggle to care for Cat and herself is as delicate a balance as there can be. Those of us familiar with history know how it ends, and that doesn’t make Kitty’s struggle any less difficult to read about. It’s heartbreaking to see a best friend self-destruct like that. And that last chapter? With some of Cat’s last words? One of the few things I’ll never forget from a book. They’re embedded in my brain. This is probably the first time I’ve ever felt an ounce of sympathy – or given any thought at all – to Catherine Howard.  At the same time, it’s hard not to view Cat as a silly young girl in over her head. She always seems to be asking for trouble and it can be so frustrating to watch Kitty continually enable her in some ways. It’s the kind of situation where you want to shake the characters for making such dumb decisions. But that’s just part of the story and how things were. But I wish we had focused a little bit more on Kitty and her interests and her desires, even though I admittedly know that the story has to focus on Cat because that’s where Kitty was focused. I can tell you that I’ll be watching Katherine Longshore for a long time and I’m already looking forward to her next Royal Circle book featuring Anne Boleyn! I’m hoping she can bring new life to an old favourite of historical fiction and if anyone can do that, it’s Katherine! ARC received from Penguin Canada for my honest review; no other compensation was received. 
breakingdownslowly on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Gilt is unlike any Tudor book I've ever read and as far as YA's concerned, I've read a lot.First off, it's told from a different perspective. A lot of Tudor books I've read were told by one of the queen's or a relative of one. Gilt is told from the perspective of one of Catherine Howard's closest friends. I loved having this different perspective. When it comes to Catherine Howard, I've only read a couple books and in both, she was telling her own story and she came off as horribly misunderstood and lonely. Reading about it from her best friend's perspective cast Catherine in a very different light. Kitty was a fantastic narrator.Second, Kitty had her own romances. Not a love triangle, really, but there was one main love interest and one secondary love interest and it's hard to explain without spoiling, but it's different and I liked it. I learned a lot about Kitty and saw a lot of her character development through those relationships.Now, Katherine Longshore knows how to write a book. The romantic tension was incredible. Remember, this is a time when people weren't even allowed to kiss before marrying and love was a rarity. So certain characters could just be standing in the same room together and I'd be like "You'll make the cutest babies because you ARE MEANT TO BE." So, yeah. Tension galore. Katherine also captured the setting and the characters so wonderfully. The setting was really well described, from the gardens, to the hallways of the castles. Since it's historical fiction, a lot of the characters were real and Katherine elaborated on what we know about them or came up with personalities for them and in the case of people I was familiar with, they were a lot like what I expected they would be. And as I mentioned, our main character does some fantastic developing and growth.Gilt isn't a short book, and I read it very quickly. I read about half in a sitting. Katherine Longshore's writing is beautiful, descriptive, and addicting. I'm pretty sure all of her books are going to be insta-buys for me.Truly, Gilt is an incredible read. The setting is lush, the characters are wonderful and diverse, the narrator is totally different from any Tudor book I've read, and the writing is addicting. Y'all seriously need to pick up this book.
Janine2011 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was so good i read it in a day and a half. I am a huge fan of historical fiction and i really thought this was written especially well. It is set in the court of Henry the 8th at the time of his marriage to Catherine Howard. It is written from the point of view of her "friend" Kitty, The only downside i thought was the ending which i thought could have been done better. Not sure if its because there will be another book but it was a bit of a letdown. Other than that i really enjoyed the author's style of writing and her descriptions of the court and all the intrigues that went on,
Pippette on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
¿Gilt¿ by Katherine Longshore is a fictionalized account of Henry VIII¿s second to last wife, Catherine Howard. The story is told from the perspective of Katherine ¿Kitty¿ Tylney, who has been friends with Catherine since age 8. I've been reading lots of YA literature lately and I've really come around to the potential quality writing in the genre. I really wanted to like this book. It's such a shame that I didn't. Characterization: The characters in this book are just dreadful. The main character and narrator, Kitty Tylney, is an idiot. Plain and simple. She starts out naïve and willingly manipulated by Cat, and that never changes. She never grows from her role as Cat¿s toady, except for one outburst when her life is actually threatened. I don¿t really understand how one spends an entire year in a place like a Tudor monarch¿s court and never learns anything, but since that was apparently true with the real Catherine Howard, I guess I have to accept it. As for Cat, well...... She¿s selfish, manipulative, and even dumber than Kitty. She¿s cunning, but stupid. Because for all her pretensions of understanding people better than Kitty, her wiles and manipulations actually landed her in a worse position that even poor, hopeless Kitty. I¿m not wild about nasty personalities like Cat¿s to begin with, but her ridiculous behaviour made her even worse. She¿s not interesting enough to even ¿love to hate her¿ because her antics are so uninspired and self-indulgent. She never changes either; even at the end, she tried to blame everything on everyone but herself. She never took responsibility for herself in the slightest.Apart from Kitty and Cat, there are no well-rounded characters or compelling personalities. It doesn¿t help that we see almost everyone from a distance, especially the King of England who is portrayed as either groping his child bride or limping around on his ulcerous legs. The villain, Culpepper is cookie-cutter charming rapist. The other ladies in waiting are rarely even refered to as anything except the Coven and you never get a real sense of who any of them are, or even how they might be injuring Catherine¿s reputation; you are just told that they¿re gossipy and it¿s implied that they¿re no good. William Gibbon is the only remotely likable character in the book.Setting: Honestly, the setting and context seemed more like a backdrop than any important aspect of the story. There is no discussion of politics or religion, beside a few mentions of the Reformation for Anne¿s sake. This could have been the court of any king at any time, not one of the most infamous British rulers of all time. Longshore spends more time describing peoples¿ wardrobes than she does most things about England.Language: Longshore is proficient with the English language. She isn¿t the worst YA writer I can mention. However, there are several completely anachronistic/false notes in the writing that just jerked me right out of the story. For example, at one point Cat exclaims, "How romantic is that!" Another time she pantomimes forcing her finger down her throat to induce vomiting, in an attempt to convey some peevish emotion. I understand that Catherine Howard was probably the most gauche of the king's wives, but she was far from the Valley girl this novel makes her out to be.Other Details: The cover puts me off, frankly. There is absolutely nothing in the cover that makes me think of the Tudor era and the picture is odd. You can actually see the hair on the model's nose, for pity sake, and it's the second most prominent part of the image.
sdunford on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
My first reaction when I received this early review copy was disappointment - I love historical fiction, but from the cover it looked like another "bodice ripper" But I'd said I would read it, and so I beganAnd I'm so glad I did. The book, written for young people, not only is good historical fiction - but it also deals with important issues that teens face daily: peer pressure, manipulation, bullying, and most poignantly realizing that you made a mistake that can't be undone.Katherine Howard is portrayed very realistically as a young girl who "should have known better", who knew what she was doing was wrong, but didn't have the foresight to understand what the repercussions really meant. The girl who thought her looks could get her anything for free, only to learn that there's a price for everything.I definitely recommend this one
BookAddictDiary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Debut author Katherine Longshore chronicles the often-discussed rise and fall of Catherine Howard, the doomed fifth wife of King Henry VIII, in her new YA historical novel, Gilt. Cat Howard's story is told through the eyes of close friend Kitty Tylney, a fellow ward of the dowager duchess. As the pair grow up together at Lambeth, Kitty is privy to all of Cat's darkest secrets -secrets that could undo her at court. When Cat is sent to court as a lady-in-waiting to Henry's fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, Kitty also travels to court, where she is thrown into the wild world of intrigue and romance that pervade the court.I really wanted to like this book. I mean, really, what's not to like about a good Tudor-era novel? But, maybe by now I've read too many because Gilt just felt stale. The stories of Henry VIII's wives, including the promiscuous Cat Howard, have been throughly explored in modern literature and TV, and Gilt casts no addition light on Cat's story. I honestly felt like I was reading something of an abridged version of Philippa Gregory's The Boleyn Inheritance. I knew everything about this story from the beginning, and the added plot line of Kitty Tylney wasn't enough to infuse this book with enough originality to keep it interesting. This was simply too painfully predictable to enjoy.I was also somewhat shocked that Gilt is being passed off as a YA novel. First, the cover implies something very sexual and looks like it works better on the cover of an adult romance novel. The inside is not much different. There is abundant discussion of adult situations, sex and courtly lust. Longshore did not seem to censor this at all in Gilt -it is essentially an adult historical novel set in the Tudor period.Honestly, I was disappointed with this book. Nothing original, nothing engaging and, to top it off, not really YA. I'd pass on this one.
CAS2199 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Kitty's best friend, Cat, or Catherine Howard, is the type of girl that attracts attention, whereas Kitty is quite the opposite and remains Cat's loyal shadow. Kitty doesn't usually mind though as Cat is one of her only friends and pretty much her only family. While growing up, Cat doesn't follow the rules of the household. She throws wild midnight parties, disobeys her elders, spends time with boys, and is all around the "Queen of Misrule." As they get older, Cat is sent to the court of Henry VIII and starts to live a life very different than the one that Kitty and Cat are accustomed to. Finally, Cat sends for Kitty to come to court and as time goes by, it becomes very apparent that Cat, or Catherine Howard, will be the next Queen of England as she has stolen Henry's heart. Kitty and Catherine try to survive amongst a crazy court and deal with Henry's ups and downs, but Catherine never plays by the rules. There are major consequences for her choices, both good and bad. Put simply, Gilt by Katherine Longshore is one of the best young adult historical novels I've read in a long time.Kitty is the type of character that is easily lead by others and that drove me nuts. One on hand, I felt badly for her as sometimes she had no choice in her decisions, because she was stuck between a rock and a hard place. The problem with this is the fact that Catherine is a royal brat and I wanted to slap her across the face. One minute I liked her, the next minute she would do something so annoying and backstabbing that I loved to hate her. The dynamics between Kitty and Cat were interesting nonetheless as Gilt also examines friendship and popularity.Just when I thought I was over novels about the Tudor Era, I get sucked into Gilt. I can confidently say now that I am NOT over this era and that Longshore has brought me back in. What is not to love? There's major drama, backstabbing, lies, intrigue, affairs, romance, gossips, etc. Half of what occurs is unbelievable, but what is even more captivating is the fact that most of these events actually occurred. Henry VIII is downright crazy and I loved being thrown back into his unpredictable court. Gilt reminded me not only of how much I love this time period, but how much I miss the show The Tudors and Gilt was a nice fix.Even though we know how things end for Catherine Howard, I was still hopelessly addicted to Gilt. I devoured it book quickly and was totally invested in Kitty's story. I highly recommend Gilt to fans of historical fiction; you won't be disappointed. So, if you plan on reading any historical fiction this summer, it quite simply has to be Gilt. Katherine Longshore is one debut author that I definitely have my eye on.
innermurk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've read and seen several adaptations/historical fiction novels and films of the Tudors, and so was excited to receive this book for the Early Reader program.The author does a pretty good job of portraying the occurrences of the times in a way that they could translate to modern times, which is what the whole teaser on the back of the book promises. However, since there was so much talk about women's 'captivity' and helplessness, and the use of so many terms that are completely outdated, such as the dress parts: kirtles and codpieces, and gabled hoods, etc., that it really didn't completely equate modern reality. If you ignore the teaser's promise of modernity, then the story itself plays out really well.It is a fairly quick read, even though it isn't a short book. The author keeps you intrigued to find what will happen next, even though we already know the ultimate ending of the story.Catherine Howard is overlooked in many of the summaries of Henry and his wives, simply because she wasn't as exciting as Anne Boleyn, didn't make as much impact as Catherine Parr's influence to restore his daughters to succession, or give him a male heir like Jane Seymour did. However, Catherine Howard's story is anything but boring, full of the intrigue in court, romantic entanglements, and of course, the same horrific ending that Anne Boleyn suffered.It is this intrigue and romance that the author centers her story around. Our narrator is Kitty, a friend of Catherine's and not a completely passive observer as she has intrigues of her own. We are treated to three years of life with Catherine and Kitty, the first year centering on their time living with the duchess, the second, and the bulk of the book is life at court, during Catherine's time as queen, and lastly, we stay with Kitty in the Tower during her imprisonment.Some of the most interesting aspects of the story are left out due to point of view. There was just no way to include Kitty in Catherine's capture of Henry, or her rendezvous with Thomas Culpepper, or to see what went on during her questioning and subsequent beheading.This would be better if the story weren't so centered on Cat, but as even our narrator admits, her life was all about Cat and what Cat wanted, so when Cat is taken out of the story, it falls flat and somewhat boring.It was sadly lacking as a love story, as the message in the end seemed to be that there was no need, or opportunity for real love in anyone's life.I understand that when dealing with real people and history the author is somewhat limited to fact, but there were enough liberties taken elsewhere that a little bit of positivity could have been easily inserted and greatly helped the overall story. Also, some characters were completely villianized without a hint of redeemable qualities whatsoever. That works for children's books, but not when using real people in historical fiction.Perhaps the author wants to continue, as there is a promise of more novels, though it doesn't specify that it would continue with these characters.Overall a good fun read, but not one to learn history by, and at least for me, not one for reading over and over.
SpaceStationMir on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Katherine Longshore transports Mean Girls to Tudor England in this delightful and terrifyingly apt criticism of modern girl culture. Readers will be seduced from the beginning with detailed descriptions of Tudor era opulence. Longshore finds her parallel to Regina in Catherine Howard, or Cat, Henry VIII's fifth wife. The teenage Cat has a bottomless appetite for clothes, jewelry, and young men. She is queen of the group of unwanted Howard nieces and cousins who live as servants-in-all-but-name to their grandmother, dowager duchess of Norfolk. In this boarding school-like setting, Cat blithely manipulates her friends and family members to suit her desires, particularly her "shadow," her "mirror," her "sister of the soul," Kitty Tylney, who hails from the even poorer side of the family. In Kitty, the audience will find its moral anchor and spark of light for the insufficiently gilded road ahead.Longshore's dialogue and pacing are refreshingly modern. She will undoubtedly be compared to Philippa Gregory, (and deservedly so, this is equal to Gregory's best work in The Other Boleyn Girl), but her writing style more closely mimics that of Suzanne Collins. Anachronistic phrases like "Shut up," and "best friend," feel authentic in the mouths of her characters. Although, she occasionally runs away with her language, Longshore's inventiveness and extensive vocabulary bring an extra dimension to her writing.Gilt is a fast and thrilling read, and demonstrates a complex understanding both of teenage girl hierarchies and palace politics. While Gilt may be read for pleasure, it may be read again for commentary on how young girls treat each other, and how both perpetrator and victim are affected. The historical parallel drives home that while modern schoolgirls may not be in a position to have their heads chopped off by mad monarchs, selfishness and materialism hurts everyone. And furthermore, while Cat is far from sympathetic, we can see this much through Kitty's eyes: Not even Regina deserves to be hit by a bus.
bacillicide on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I don't know a lot about Catherine Howard. There. I said it. My two favorites of King Henry's wives are always Anne Boleyn and Anne of Cleves, so it's interesting to hear about Catherine Howard for a bit of a change of pace. I also don't usually read young adult historical fiction, but Katherine Longshore has done a wonderful job in historical accuracy (though I was really confused for awhile because she didn't even mention Jane Seymour until at least halfway through the book, and only in passing. I found that a bit strange.)Kitty was frustrating. A total doormat. More so than I would attribute to that day and age. Literally no backbone, no ability to think for herself. She was this way up until pretty much the last chapter. There are little titillation of change, but invariably she slipped back into being beaten down by everyone. At the end she had a bit of a change, but her "transformation" was a bit unsatisfying, as was the climax. I was hoping for a reconciliation with William, which would have been pursuing what she had wanted in the beginning and what she had given up for Cat. It would have just tied everything together nicely but maybe I'm just a hopeless romantic with a penchant for happy endings.Despite the flaws, this is an exceptional YA historical novel. Despite the modern language it displays life in the Tudor Court accurately. Especially the fear. The fear in everyone. The side-eying, the suspicion. All of that was completely authentic. I love Cat. I love her in a way that only a rampaging, selfish regent can inspire love. She and Alice seemed to be the only women in the novel strong enough to go after what they wanted, and of course Cat suffers the consequences.I also love Alice. Everything was done brilliantly with her, especially the end. She was very understated until mid-novel where her importance kind of takes you by surprise and has you going "of course!".All in all, worth the read if you're into the Tudor dynasty.
AmberFIB on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Well, this book was okay. It wasn't the best historical fiction I've ever read, though. Longshore clearly did her research, but she didn't deviate much from said research. She took no creative license with these people's lives whatsoever. At least she didn't do anything that hadn't already been done. The idea was intriguing: Catherine Howard, promiscuous queen and Anne Boleyn's cousin, told through the eyes of her chambermaid. However, the story itself just fell flat. I didn't really like any of the characters, and I already know how crappy court life is. I wanted something new, and unfortunately, I didn't get it. The characters in Gilt are either doormats or extremely vile. Neither option appealed to me. Sure, Kitty stands up for herself at the end, but overall, she was a complete doormat. She seriously needed to grow a spine. And Cat? Why would you cheat on the man who already beheaded your cousin? Are you stupid or just crazy? Because seriously, no one in her right mind would do that. And by being so careless, Cat put herself and everyone who associated with her at risk. Needless to say, I didn't feel like it was any great loss when her head got chopped off. There's really not as much of a love triangle as the synopsis suggests, and while I generally don't like love triangles that much, it would have at least added some excitement to the book. This novel just wasn't that suspenseful to me. I'm assuming I wasn't kept on the edge of my seat because I already knew what happened to Cat. If Longshore had brought something new to the table, I think I would have been much more invested in the plot. As it stands, the story dragged quite a bit for me and it took me several tries to actually get through the book. Longshore's writing is top notch, though. I really enjoyed her wording, for the most part, and I felt that the story flowed well. She got a little modern colloquial at times, but in general, the writing was quite good. The pacing was okay, but, as I stated above, the book did drag for me some. However, I think the dragging came from boredom more than pacing. Overall, I'd read another book by Longshore, definitely. I enjoyed her writing style. I would not read another Tudor book by her, though. This isn't because the book is bad, it's just because I already knew the story. If she wrote something contemporary, then I'd absolutely read it. I'd recommend this book to historical fiction buffs (I like some historical fiction, but it's not my favorite) and people who do not know the story of Catherine Howard. If you know much about the Tudors, this novel may bore you.
slanger89 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Gilt is a teen historical fiction novel about the Henry VIII debacle. This story focuses around Cat's, Catherine Howard, story told from the perspective of Cat's childhood friend Kiity. Even though Henry VII and Cat are in the novel, Kitty's transformation from a girl who does whatever she is told to a free-thinking individual is the main focus. Gilt is filled with romance, hte intrigue of court life, difficult choices, consequences, and revelations.This novel was one I couldn't put down. It held all the elements of a great historical fiction novel. I would definitely recommend this to others, mainly teens, who enjoy historical fiction especially about Henry VII. It's not as detailed as a Phillipa Gregory novel, but a good fast read.
queencersei on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Katherine 'Kitty' Tylney is the young, forgotten daughter , distantly related to English nobility. As a young girl she is cast off by her family to be raised in the Duchess of Norfolk's household. This is where Kitty meets her best friend, Catherine 'Cat' Howard. Kitty exists in Cat's shadow. Kitty is the loyal friend who entertains Cat and keeps all of her secrets. Eventually Cat makes her way to the Court of King Henry VIII, becoming his fifth and youngest wife. Cat sends for her faithful friend and Kitty finds herself wildly out of her depth and eventually ruined as she is ensnared in a court full of intrigue and manipulation. Kitty is well drawn, but ultimately hard to like. She exists entirely in the shadow of her beautiful and cunning friend, Catherine Howard. She is hardly able to articulate that she may have any desires for herself, apart from just being wanted. It is that sense of abandonment that draws Kitty to Cat and keeps her there, even as Cat self-destructs. In the end Kitty does seem to be little more than a shadow, though the story is told from her point of view.
toofacedgrl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I received this book through Early Reviewers.First off, I should note that when I marked this book as one of my choices for the program, I wasn't aware it was a YA book, so I will try to not let it affect my review.I've read quite a few books on the wives of Henry the 8th, so I did know more than a little about Katherine Howard and her quick rise and fall in court life. I very much enjoyed the pacing of the book and found it engaging, entertaining, and believable. I thought it did more of a service to Katherine's tale than previous accounts--I have read one other book with her tale being told through her friend's perspective as well as Phillipa Gregory's The Boleyn Inheritance, and I found this version to be the most nuanced.Even though I'm about 15 years out of the target audience for this book I really did enjoy it and will be passing my copy to my younger cousins to enjoy.
amandacb on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I am an avid historical fiction fan and the court of Henry VIII is one of my favorite topics. However, this book added nothing new to the genre and I was ultimately left disappointed. It did not help that the narration by the main character, Kitty, was choppy and full of incomplete, extremely short sentences.
tahoegirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A different take on an old story. I've read other historical fiction about Catherine "Cat" Howard but nothing for a teen audience.The author does a great job making Cat and Kitty relate-able to a teen audience. Every teenage girl has felt bullied by a friend or a popular girl who is just a B$*^%#, and was too weak or insecure to stand up to her.I am thrilled that this historic tale is being updated for today's teen audience
ljldml on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Fantastic debut novel by Katherine Longshore. I have always had a fondness for Tudor history. Especially the lives of those unfortunate enough to be part of the king's household. Of all Henry's wives, Catherine Howard is the one I understand the least. Several books portray her as the used and abused young child of the Howard's. Used to further their place at court, and abused, ignored when the young woman fails to produce an heir. She is also portrayed as a conniving, selfish fiend who only lives to further her own pleasures. Kitty is a young woman who is incredibly naive at the start of this book. The two are brought up together in the home of a duchess. Despite all, Kitty truly believes herself to be a friend to Catherine, not just a pawn in a bigger game. She learns the hard way, life at court is less than majestic. Catherine is indeed just a selfish brat who thinks more of herself than others. Or does she? This is an incredible debut novel. I did not like Catherine Howard. I did not feel pity when she lost her head.Kitty was a different character all together. I felt, at times, like yelling at her "She's just using you! Grow up and see the light!" Kitty still chose to believe the best of Catherine. Her character was amazingly loyal, but never boring. I give this book 5 stars and hope Katherine Longshore writes more!!!
Jennikjenkins on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Katherine Longshore's debut novel is beautifully written and will be sure to appeal to those who love the Tudors. Following the rise and fall of King Henry VIII's fifth wife , the young and impetuous, Catherine Howard. The author tells her story through the eyes of her friend Kitty Tylney. Both girls grew up together but only one caught the eye of the king. The girls have an interesting relationship with hearts and personalities that are completely different. Your heart will reach out to Kitty and at time you will dislike young Catherine but you can't help but feel sorry for her and her choices. I enjoyed reading Longshore's first novel and will look forward to what she writes next!
historicalreader on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Gilt wasa fascinating look in to the life of Katherine Howard. This may have beena YA book but you wouldnt have known that while reading it. the characters were very well fleshed out and the plot was very engrossing. I have read many book on the Tudors and this one fits in on my favorites list. I will be picking up the Authors subsquent books in this series. thank you LT for the chance to read this fascinating book.
ahandfulofconfetti on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
2.5 of 5 stars.When Kitty Tylney's best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII's heart and brings Kitty to court, she's thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. No longer stuck in Cat's shadow, Kitty's now caught between two men--the object of her affection and the object of her desire. But court is also full of secrets, lies, and sordid affairs, and as Kitty witnesses Cat's meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head.When I first heard about Gilt I was really excited to read it, and tried over and over to get my hands on an ARC. I was lucky enough to win an ARC via a contest on Shelf Awareness Pro, and once I received it, immediately dove into it. Unfortunately this book didn't live up to my expectations. I so wanted to love it, but there were just things about it that really affected my overall enjoyment. Gilt reminded me of The Other Boleyn Girl, in terms of the fact that we're talking about yet another of King Henry VIII's wives, the story takes place in Henry's court, and the book was a little slow to develop. However, unlike with Anne Boleyn in that book, we get to see some of Cat and Kitty's childhoods. Another similarity is that both books are told from someone other than the Queen's point of view: in The Other Boleyn Girl we got Anne's sister, Mary, and in Gilt we got Katherine "Kitty" Tylney, Cat Howard's best friend. However, while I enjoyed Mary, for the most part, Kitty really grated on me, for reasons I'll get into below.In my opinion, this book used language that was far too modern for the times. It was like Kitty and Cat were living in the 21st Century, instead of 16th Century England. When you're writing historical fiction, and you want to draw your reader in and immerse them in the world you're describing, it works better to use the turns of phrase of the times and have historical characters speak like they actually did. It just helps set the mood and the scene and make things more realistic. This book really failed in that, aside from the terms used to describe the dresses the girls wore (and we got a lot of that, because Cat is obsessed with fashions, and Kitty blindly tags along with her).It was easier to put myself down than build up hope only to have it crushed. (pg. 199 in ARC)Our narrator, Kitty, is perhaps one of the weakest characters I have ever read. She is befriended by Cat when they are girls growing up in the Dowager Duchess's house. Cat is the most popular, prettiest girl there, and Kitty sees herself as nothing more than Cat's shadow. Cat is a master manipulator even at a young age, and basically can convince Kitty to do whatever she wants. Kitty has absolutely no spine whatsoever; she can't think for herself, she can't stand up to Cat (even when she knows Cat is wrong and/or making mistakes) and she is willfully blind to Cat's faults. This makes her a very hard main character to warm up to, at least for me personally. I have a big problem with characters that are little more than doormats, and instead of feeling sorry for her, I spent the wide majority of the book being thoroughly frustrated with her. It did not make for the most enjoyable reading experience.Cat had used me my entire life. Made me do things I didn't want to do ... She had taken away the things I loved. Convinced me to do things I knew were wrong. But I always came back for more. So who was at fault? (pg. 376)And then we have Cat, who is also so unlikable I just couldn't stand her. While Kitty allows herself to be used by Cat, it is Cat herself that just sees no reason not to use whatever or whomever is at her disposal to do what she wants. This only intensifies when she becomes Queen, because now she has the royal standing to do so. She brings Kitty and the other girls to court mainly because they know her s
cswolff9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Gilt by Katherine Longshore is the first YA version I have read about Catherine Howard, Henry VIII's fifth wife. Written from the point of view of Kitty Tylney, Catherine Howard's childhood friend, it is a very vivid and rich tale of the young queen. Kitty and Cat grew up together and when Cat goes to the Tudor court becoming Queen she sends for her friends to surround her and help as a buffer from the gossips, schemer's and manipulator's populating the court. Kitty is Cat's best friend and while Kitty tries to be loyal and look out for Cat, Cat makes it a very difficult job as she is self indulgent and self centered. While Cat is not very likeable I do think she was fully "fleshed out" as a character. Kitty, while putting up with way too much from Cat and getting so very little, is still a strong young woman, just naive and with misplaced loyalty. With all the detailed descriptions of court life, fashions, intrigues and deceptions, Gilt is an entertaining mix of fiction and history for young adults.
Onionspark on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Gilt is the story of Catherine Howard, fifth wife to King Henry VIII, as told from the point of view of her best friend and chamberer Kitty Tylney. From their days together in the house of the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk, with secret midnight parties where men were invited into the maidens' chamber, to Catherine's rise at court and her marriage to the king, Kitty is a shadow to her friend Cat, eclipsed by Cat's ambition and unapologetic command.I feel that one of the main points of this story is that the two girls are, after all, teenagers - they are unlikable characters, Cat a spoiled brat grasping for more power than she can handle, and Kitty spineless and unable to listen to herself - but both of these make sense given their age and the situation they had placed themselves in. Overall I quite enjoyed this book, and passed it on to my mom to try next.
TeresaInTexas on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It was déjà vu for me reading Gilt, as I read The Confession Of Katherine Howard about this same time last year, also an early review. The Tudors continue to fascinate writers and readers, but how many times can the same story be told? Both books deal with the brief marriage of Henry VIII and his youngest wife Catherine Howard. Both are told from the point of view of Kitty Tylney, Cat's friend and lady-in-waiting. Both employ 21st century dialogue. But Gilt succeeds as a better story. Kitty struggles with being true to her friend and keeping secrets versus knowing that a crime has been committed, and this knowledge makes Kitty an accomplice. I like the play on words of the title: gilt/guilt. I also liked that the author makes Thomas Culpepper smarmy--I've never seen this characterization of him before and that was refreshing. Even though I knew how it would end, the narrative moved quickly and the ending was satisfying and true to life. Written for young adults.
eternalised More than 1 year ago
This author and book reminded me of Philippa Gregory’s writing. Kitty is friends with Catherine Howard, who worms her way into King Henry VIII’s heart. Kitty is brought to court, to a world filled with fabulous gowns and jewels. The writing is great, and the setting was amazing and well-described. I loved Kitty and how she interacted with the other characters. A solid historical fiction. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago