Share your Anne Boleyn recommendations

Posted By on August 21, 2017

I want to create a list of Anne Boleyn Files followers’ recommendations of books, TV series and movies on Anne Boleyn. It’s always great to share recommendations, at the risk of adding to my very long “to read” and “to watch” lists!

Anyway, to share your recommendations and to help me create this list, please could you spare just a few minutes to answer the five questions in this survey – thank you!

24 thoughts on “Share your Anne Boleyn recommendations”

  1. Daniela says:

    Hi Claire,

    I can’t seem to access this survey! Would it open on a laptop? Using my iPhone at the moment. I click on it and nothing happens.

    1. Claire says:

      Hi Daniela,
      I’m sorry you’re having trouble with the survey. I’m not sure whether it works on an iphone as I don’t have one to check, but I’ve just checked it on my laptop and it’s working ok on that.
      Sorry about that.

      1. Rachel Bowen says:

        Yes it works on my Laptop, but not on my Ipad.

  2. Christine says:

    Hi Claire I’m using my iPad and it’s not working with that either,

    1. Daniela says:

      Hi Christine,

      Have you tried using a laptop to see if that works as Claire commented. I’ve not got round to opening my laptop up yet as I’ve had a busy rest of the day. However will try that tomorrow and see if it works then. Perhaps a laptop would work.

      Hope you get it sorted,

      Best wishes,

      Daniela

      1. Christine says:

        Thanks Daniela iv only got my little iPad tho, mores the pity but never mind.

    2. Claire says:

      Perhaps it’s an Apple incompatibility issue, I’m not sure, sorry! The questions are:
      1) Which is your all-time favourite non-fiction Anne Boleyn book?
      2) What is your favourite Anne Boleyn novel?
      3) Which documentary on Anne Boleyn or Henry VIII’s six wives do you consider to be the best?
      4) Which movie or TV series (not documentary) do you think depicted Anne Boleyn the most accurately?
      5) Are there any other Anne Boleyn-themed books, movies or TV series that you would recommend?

      Feel free to answer those as comments and I’ll your answers to the others. Thanks!

      1. Christine says:

        Thanks Claire.

      2. Rachel Bowen says:

        Claire – My comments about Wolf Hall, I was given a copy by a friend and strongly disliked the style. Hilary Mantel researches well, but I had no idea about whom she was talking – there would be a scene in which three of four men appeared, she then comments on ‘he’, without any indication of which ‘he’ she was talking about.

        Luckily, Arte are showing the series of Wolf Hall on French television at the moment, unfortunately 3 episodes at one sitting with the last going on until the early hours of the morning. I’ve watched the first two. I need to look at the ‘replay’ of the third before I look at the next three episodes in the next few days.
        The portrayal of Thomas Cromwell by Mark Rylance is magistral.
        However I don’t think her understanding of Anne Boleyn is accurate. Anne may have been selfish and liked her own way, but I do not think she was as nasty as she is portrayed by Claire Foy, who is a magnificent and versatile actress.
        Anne was not stupid, was well-read. With all that I have read about Anne, I am convinced that she was ‘framed’. In our age, we find it very difficult to put ourselves in the mind of Henry V111, but his portrayal in Wolf Hall really helps us to try and see what was going on in Henry’s mind. He too was manipulated by his advisors. Finally his and their belief that a male heir was proved unfounded by the reign of Elizabeth 1, ironically the daughter of Anne Boleyn. When I have seen the rest of the series, I will post my reactions.
        The comments of Eustache Chapuys relative to Anne are important, but all his remarks are coloured by his allegiance to Catherine of Aragon and his belief that she was badly treated, which I don’t think we can deny. Chapuys could never bring himself to name Anne Boleyn, but always referred to her as ‘the concubine’ or some other denigratory epithet.

        1. Claire says:

          I tried so many times to read Wolf Hall and had to force myself to finish it in the end, the same with Bring Up the Bodies. I didn’t like the style and I felt that the characters were very 2-dimensional and all of them were unlikeable. I have to at least like someone in a book I’m reading.
          I didn’t like the series either. I felt that it was all so dark. Those tapestries would have been so colourful that we would have found them gaudy, there would have been wealth and colour everywhere, it would have been dazzling at Henry’s court. I also hated Claire Foy as Anne, the weird French accent that was only used when she said Cromwell’s name was very annoying. Oh well!

        2. Jennifer C says:

          I agree! Cromwell does not appear to be painted in as “true” a light as history has indicated. And I felt, in this style of writing, that I was somehow not getting the intent of her portrayal…b/c I couldn’t keep track of the he’s!
          Mark Rylance was so impressive in the series, but he too, I’m my humble opinion, added a sense of legitimacy to what I believe now we’re contrived charges on Q. Anne.

  3. Movie Anne of the Thousand Days…….by far the best as far as I’m concerned !

  4. Michael says:

    I don’t think the problem is just with Apple platforms. I have a Samsung Galaxy smartphone and an Amazon Fire tablet. Both are Android and it won’t open.
    My favorite movie about Anne is by far ‘Anne of the Thousand Days’ which was my introduction to her 30yrs ago and my favorite documentary is ‘Henry and Anne: The Lover’s Who Changed History’.

  5. Christine says:

    My favourite non fiction book is The Lady In The Tower by Weir, she dramatically recounts the last few weeks of Annes life and her execution is so detailed. My favourite Anne Boleyn novel is The Concubine by Lofts, the documentary is Henry and Anne the lovers who changed history, and the movie is Anne Of The Thousand Days, Bujold had all Annes fiery spirit and ambition, there was a fiction book I read at school in the library which I really enjoyed, it was about Anne and her daughter Elizabeth, sadly I cannot remember the authors name or the title, I would recommend Anna Bolina the opera but I know not everyone enjoys opera, I’m not too keen but I really enjoyed it because it was about Anne. I would also recommend Anne Boleyn by Lofts, she had such skill as a writer and she seemed to bring a touch of magic to her book, Anne did after all enchant the King and she conveyed that to the reader, lastly Ives book on Anne, it is a huge book and if you ever need to find out anything about this doomed queen then this is the book for you.

    1. Gail Marie says:

      I saw the Anna Bolena opera a couple of years ago in Chicago, with Anne being sung by Sondra Radanovsky, it was wonderful. I’m not a big opera fan but yes, because it was Anne Boleyn, I went and loved it. Sondra did all 3 Donizetti TudorQueen operas last year at the Met in New York City and I saw a taped performance at a local theatre of Roberto Devereux, in which she played Elizabeth I. Could you be thinking about the book, The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn, by Robin Maxwell? It’s about Elizabeth being given her mother’s diary in which she recorded all the events of her life.

      1. Christine says:

        Hi Gail no it wasn’t that book, I was at school a long time ago and I think it was called Elizabeth Tudor and something else, it wasn’t fiction so much as an historical journey into the life of Elizabeth with marked references to Anne Boleyn, just wish I knew the author very frustrating.

        1. Banditqueen says:

          I loved that opera, even though it was inaccurate, it was brilliant and dramatic and Anne was such a strong and powerful personality. I saw it twice on Sky Arts so had the benefit of subtitles. They used the bit from the Spanish Chronicle with Mark Smeaton and marmalade and there is a Thomas Percy but it was so well played that I was captivated.

        2. Christine says:

          Yes I watched it on sky arts to, I loved it when they showed Anne with the baby Elizabeth and they showed Henry courting Jane Seymour, it was as you say very dramatic, and it caught perfectly the anguish Anne must have felt in her final months of life after her miscarriage, and having to endure the knowledge that she was gradually losing her husband to one of her lady’s in waiting.

    2. Claire says:

      Christine, do you mean Norah Lofts’ biography or her novel?

      1. Christine says:

        Just seen your post Claire so sorry, are you referring to the book I mentioned reading at school?

    3. Jennifer C says:

      Thank you for your tips!

  6. Christine says:

    Also the Last Days Of Anne Boleyn, which had interviews with notable historians putting their side across, I thought that was very well done and the actress who played Anne was very charismatic, iv watched that documentary several times and never get tired of watching it.

  7. Claire says:

    Thank you for all the answers!

  8. Jennifer C says:

    I’m finishing up Alison Weir’s 2010 “The Lady in the Tower”.
    We all know her expertise about Tudor times and the crush of conspiracy she has so aptly researched/described in many of her books.
    “…Tower” has convinced this reader more fully the contrived manner in which Q. Anne (& her friends or ‘non-enemies’) were tragically slandered. Highly recommended reading!

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