What are the best Anne Boleyn books?

The best biographies/text books on Anne Boleyn, in my opinion, are Eric Ives' "The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn", Retha M Warnicke's "The Rise and Fall of Anne Boleyn" and Joanna Denny's "Anne Boleyn: A New Life of England's Tragic Queen" - check out the Anne Boleyn Books page for details on those books.
If you want novels inspired by Anne Boleyn, there are loads. Look for writers like Robin Maxwell, Philippa Gregory, Laurien Gardner, Jean Plaidy etc. Again, see the book page.


22 thoughts on “What are the best Anne Boleyn books?”

  1. Ali M says:

    You could also try, “Divorced, Beheaded, Survived” by Karen Lindsey – This is an excellent interpretation of the wives and honestly makes a LOT of sense. It is also very easy to read. Ives is a heavy read for someone new to Anne Boleyn.

  2. Jane says:

    “The Other Boleyn Girl” focuses more on Anne’s sister Mary than Anne herself, but it isa very good read.

  3. Bree says:

    Anne Boleyn- A New Life of England’s Tragic Queen is a non-fictioin book. It clears what is blackened rumours and replaces it with truth and evidence to justify the truth. A lot of rumours are mistaken as facts, and ended up in books and movies.

    “The Other Boleyn Girl” is a lovely written story, but it’s more fiction than non-fiction. It paints Anne Boleyn as a vile figure, when whe wasn’t at all. It gives false idea to whom Anne Boleyn really was. Though I love the book and the writer’s style, it still make me uneasy to how she portrayed Anne Boleyn.

    1. ellen says:

      Yes, ;The Other’ does make AB look vile. So does the film based on the book. No way that fiercely proud woman went sobbing to the block.

  4. Mindy says:

    I just got done reading Allison Weirs The Fall of Anne Boleyn, Wow really good, a harder read but any Anne Boleyn follower will love it!

  5. Janet says:

    Hi everyone I have onlyj ust joined this site today I own a number of books about Anne Boleyn some are probably out of print but you should be able to get them on the internet apart from all the ones published in the last few years and mentioned above the ones I have are:

    The Rose of Hever by Maureen Peters
    Anne Boleyn by Evelyn Anthony
    The Heir of Allington (about Thomas Wyatt and Anne) by Phillipa Wiat
    Anne Boleyn by Margaret Hays
    The Lady in the Tower by Jean PLaidy
    Blood Royal by Mollie Hardwick

    My all time favourite books about Anne are Brief Gaudy Hour and Murder Most Royal I have yet to read The Fall of Anne Boleyn

  6. Steve says:

    Whenever there are discussions on the best Anne Boleyn it always amazes me that the one by Marie Louise Bruce is never mentioned. I have had this book since the 1970;s and have never read a better one.
    I don’t think she wrote too many others – a pity

  7. Kayla Marie says:

    Well I just ffinishedRobin Maxwell’s two books about Anne and they were great! There’s “Mademoiselle Boleyn” about Anne’s younger days in the french court and “The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn” not only about Anne’s days with Henry VIII but about Elizabeth I’s first days as QOE. Anyways, both great books.

  8. Louisa B says:

    I’ve read many good fiction books on Anne Boleyn- but I’m also trying to read some real biographies
    I found Marie Louise Bruce’s book very intriguing, as well as Joanna Dennys- both easy reads.
    I’m currently reading Eric Ive’s book- the most happy- and it’s very heavy going.
    I also read The lady in the Tower by Alison Wier- this was an EXCELLENT account into how Anne ended up executed- i would reccomend it to anyone who is interested.

  9. Alice says:

    I like “The Other Boleyn girl”too,but its very inaccurate and portraits Anne as a shewolf.For a different portrait of Anne,one that shows her as a nicer,much more likeable person ,I would like to recommend “The Most Happy-a novel about Anne Boleyns life”by Charlotte St George.In this novel Anne is very reluctant to Henry VIIIs attentions and eventual proposal
    and is also showed to have enjoyed an unfulfilled,tragic lovestory with Henry Norris.

    1. Brian Morson says:

      Just finished _____Anne Boleyn. The kings Obsession. BY Alison Weir. Great read. Really enjoyed it. I disagree with some parts of the book but for first time readers about Anne. Great book to start with. Brian

  10. Geoffrey Boleyn says:

    The Concubine, by Norah Lofts is excellent, and I’m currently reading Evelyn Anthony’s Anne Boleyn. I recommend it.

  11. Benoibe says:

    I just wanted to say that this is a fantastic site and an amazing list in particular.

    I’m currently reading Lady in the Tower by Alison Weir. It is very good for anyone who is looking for an definitive non-fiction account of Anne’s last few months leading up to her execution.
    I also want to plug the novel by this same author that centers in the early life of her daughter, Elizabeth: called The Lady Elizabeth. It reveals a wonderful account of Elizabeth’s longing for her mother, and how the fate of her mother affected her life and shaped her reign as Virgin Queen.
    I too have read The Other Boleyn Girl. It is an excellent book, but it is terribly biased against Anne, and very fictional.

    1. Claire says:

      I’m so glad that you like the website and thank you for taking the time to comment.

      Yes, The Lady in the Tower is very good. Have you read my book The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown? I have some different views that Alison Weir.

      I haven’t read The Lady Elizabeth so thank you for the recommendation.

      1. Baroness Von Reis says:

        Claire ,I loved your books!!! excellent reads,How good is the book Lady in the Tower???I meant to read it. THX Baroness x

  12. Nuna says:

    I’m new to the website, but I like it very much so far. The Other Boleyn Girl is a good read, but it portrays Anne in a bad light. Does anyone know any stories somewhat like it?

  13. Heather says:

    I just finished reading Murder Most Royal. I liked Jean Plaidy’s writing style….I just had a problem with the sixth nail and mole myth. I liked though how she portrayed Henry Vlll after Catherine Howard’s beheading. He seemed less cold for some reason.

  14. Rachel Campbell says:

    This is a great site. I’ve just finished Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, which is not exclusively about Anne Boleyn, but is fascinating to set the scene. I am now really interested in branching out and trying the books you recommend!

  15. Christine says:

    Iv read Murder Most Royal by Jean Plaidy but her view of Anne was a bit romantic I thought, I know it’s historical fiction not a biography but in it she portrays Henry as never having loved Katherine and she describes her as always being dull but that’s not true, she also describes Mary Boleyn as a promiscuous dimwit but there’s no evidence of that either and Anne herself is this raving beauty but she wasn’t that she was witty and vivacious and some men found her attractive but some people wondered what on earth he saw in her, Norah Lofts The Concubine is my favourite as to me it accurately portrays Anne as she must have appeared to many, that said The Lady In The Tower by Alison Weir which is a biography of Anne centres on her final days is very good, it’s what led to her fall in the first place, and the people involved in that, I want to read Wolf Hall has it’s got rave reviews.

    1. ellen says:

      All personal taste, of course….I have to admit that I found ‘Wolf Hall’ tedious and unpleasant. The writer’s style is unappealing to me, and so, for that matter, is Thomas Cromwell!

    2. Emma says:

      I found Wolf Hall a bit hard to read. It has a lot of archaic words in it so have a dictionary handy. I’m currently reading “Bringing up the Bodies” but again, its one you have to concentrate on. I think I’m coming to the conclusion that I don’t particularly gel to Hilary Mantels style of writing.

  16. Andy says:

    Anyone read any of David Starkey’s books? Can you recommend?

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