• Elizabeth

  • The Forgotten Years
  • By: John Guy
  • Narrated by: Alex Jennings
  • Length: 17 hrs and 15 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (54 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A groundbreaking reconsideration of our favorite Tudor queen, Elizabeth is an intimate and surprising biography that shows her at the height of her power by the best-selling, Whitbread Award-winning author of Queen of Scots.

Elizabeth was crowned at 25 after a tempestuous childhood as a bastard and an outcast, but it was only when she reached 50 and all hopes of a royal marriage were dashed that she began to wield real power in her own right. For 25 years she had struggled to assert her authority over advisers who pressed her to marry and settle the succession; now, she was determined not only to reign but also to rule. In this magisterial biography of England's most ambitious Tudor queen, John Guy introduces us to a woman who is refreshingly unfamiliar: at once powerful and vulnerable, willful and afraid. In these essential and misunderstood forgotten years, Elizabeth confronts challenges at home and abroad: war against the Catholic powers of France and Spain, revolt in Ireland, an economic crisis that triggered riots in the streets of London, and a conspiracy to place her cousin Mary Queen of Scots on her throne. For a while she was smitten by a much younger man, but could she allow herself to act on that passion and still keep her throne?

For the better part of a decade, John Guy mined long-overlooked archives, scouring court documents and handwritten letters to sweep away myths and rumors. This prodigious historical detective work has made it possible to reveal for the first time the woman behind the polished veneer: wracked by insecurity, often too anxious to sleep alone, voicing her own distinctive and surprisingly resonant concerns. Guy writes like a dream, and this combination of groundbreaking research and propulsive narrative puts him in a class of his own.

©2016 John Guy (P)2016 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“A fresh, thrilling portrait... Guy’s Elizabeth is deliciously human.” (Stacy Schiff, The New York Times Book Review)

“A superb book.... Guy persuades us that pretty much everything we think we know about Elizabeth is wrong... Considering that she was a Protestant in a Catholic-dominated Europe, a woman in a male-dominated world, the daughter of one parent who had been executed by the other... [she] should be seen as the most remarkable individual to have worn a European crown between Charlemagne and Napoleon.” (Andrew Roberts, The Wall Street Journal)

"Outstanding...This page-turning book is history, biography, scholarship personified, and a crystal-clear look at Elizabeth in the war years that erases the myths and presents the real woman. Absolutely one of the best biographies of Elizabeth ever.” (Kirkus Reviews)

What listeners say about Elizabeth

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worth the credit

I seldom write positive reviews, but here one is. A well researched, well organised, factual history read beautifully. Nothing jarred. Nothing irritated. I am really glad to have purchased this book.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent

This was a most wonderfully written book. Loved the detail and biographical accounts. The more I listened the more I wanted to know

3 people found this helpful

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Spellbinding

It's definitely worth the read. I learned things I never even heard before.
The narrator was good and didn't detract from the story.
A great read, I think you'll really enjoy it.

1 person found this helpful

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The True Elizabeth

A wonderful narrative of later year's of Elizabeth I reign. The narrator brings to life the. people and events that signified her long reign on the English thrown. I give it Five Stars!