• Heretic Queen

  • Queen Elizabeth I and the Wars of Religion
  • By: Susan Ronald
  • Narrated by: Wanda McCaddon
  • Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (227 ratings)

Try our newest plan – access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks, and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Plus plan is $7.95 a month after 30 day trial. Upgrade or cancel anytime.
Buy for $24.95

Buy for $24.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Acclaimed biographer Susan Ronald delivers a stunning account of Elizabeth I that focuses on her role in the Wars of Religion - the battle between Protestantism and Catholicism that tore Europe apart in the sixteenth century.

Elizabeth’s 1558 coronation procession was met with an extravagant outpouring of love. Only 25 years old, the young queen saw herself as the nation’s Protestant savior, aiming to provide new hope, prosperity, and independence from the foreign influence that had plagued her sister Mary’s reign. Given the scars of the Reformation, Elizabeth would need all of the powers of diplomacy and tact she could summon.

Extravagant, witty, and hot tempered, Elizabeth was the ultimate tyrant. Yet at the outset, in religious matters, she was unfathomably tolerant for her day. "There is only one Christ, Jesus, one faith," Elizabeth once proclaimed. "All else is a dispute over trifles." Heretic Queen is the highly personal, untold story of how Queen Elizabeth I secured the future of England as a world power. Susan Ronald paints the queen as a complex character whose apparent indecision was really a political tool that she wielded with great aplomb.

Susan Ronald was born and raised in the United States but has lived in England for more than 25 years. She is the author of The Pirate Queen, The Sancy Blood Diamond, and France: Crossroads of Europe. She owns a film production company and is a screenwriter and film producer.

©2012 Susan Ronald (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This is a compulsive, engaging, and vivid history.… The drama of the English Reformation comes alive." (Alison Weir,  New York Times best-selling author)
"A triumph." (Antonia Fraser,  New York Times best-selling author)
"A searing account of the dark underside of the Elizabethan golden age. Susan Ronald has written a devastating  and important reminder of the long, hard road from religious strife to accommodation." (Amanda Foreman,  New York Times best-selling author of  The World on Fire and  The Duchess)

What listeners say about Heretic Queen

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    132
  • 4 Stars
    62
  • 3 Stars
    22
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    6
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    150
  • 4 Stars
    36
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    4
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    122
  • 4 Stars
    54
  • 3 Stars
    17
  • 2 Stars
    9
  • 1 Stars
    7

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

a thorough history of a great lady

I thought this volume was a little redundant and repetitive at times, but nonetheless I was captivated by the subject. Queen Elizabeth was fascinating and I couldn't stop listening. I was so taken by Good Queen Bess, that I was actually upset when the story ended and she came to the end of her life. 4 centuries may have passed since her reign, but she is no less interesting now than I'm sure she was then.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Pleasant Surprise

The material:

I have read and listened to many books about Queen Elizabeth I so I am very well informed on her life. I was pleased to note that this look mirrors many of the things that I have come to know about this queen while I was pleasantly surprised to note that the author expanded on things that I have not read much about. The first example was while many books mention her coronation procession, this book had a more detailed accounting than I have yet to read.

The narrator:

This narrator was very good in her pace and tone. I would seriously consider reading another book she narrates solely on how well she performed here.

Overall thought:

I got this book as part of my audible membership but I would gladly have paid full price for this book. I think this is a must listen to anyone who likes the Tudor era of English history.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

Maybe I had it wrong, but I was looking for a story and got an historical narrative instead.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent Introduction to the Reign of Elizabeth I

Heretic Queen is a well-written and entertaining history of Elizabeth's reign. The focus is on the religious issues that faced the country during the Reformation, disputes between and among Catholics and various Protestant groups, both inside England and internationally, but it also provides on overview of her reign in general.

This is neither a romanticized life story nor a dry scholarly history. Rather, it is a serious non-academic history - the kind of book that lets you learn a lot without getting bored. Plus the reader is outstanding and kept my interest throughout.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book about religious issues of Elizabeth

I highly recommend this book if you want to understand the queen's relationship with religion. Particularly between the struggles of the protestants and Catholics

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Not the best choice for audio

Would you try another book from Susan Ronald and/or Wanda McCaddon?

Perhaps.

Any additional comments?

The detail is fantastic, incredibly well-researched. Unfortunately, that doesn't always lend well to an audio interpretation. I find myself re-listening to pick up details that I missed so I can follow and too much of this makes for very fragmented reading.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting & Informative

Specific information given about the personages, their specific interests and issues faced during Queen Elizabeths' Reign

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Details

This book is full of facts. No story line. I struggled to listen and finish.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

at last told in full

Herein lies the much more complte history of a section of history hither to now given in much abbreviated form. I had often suspected there was alot more to the tales of this time's hisory.
thank you

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very Detailed and Well Researched!

As stated above, I found this to be very well (thoroughly) researched. The narration was great and the author clearly put lots of time into researching and details. This has more detail than anything I've previously seen or read. Great book for those who want to really know the political life of HRH Elizabeth Tudor and her contemporaries. Thank you.