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Don't Lose Your Head - If Queens could kiss and tell





Oscar E. Moore “from the rear mezzanine” for TalkEntertainment.com

Life lessons from the six wives of the infamous tyrant Henry VIII take center stage to vent their long held suppressed anger in this “unofficial survival guide for fans of the musical SIX” written by Harriet Marsden now available - $16.95 US.

DISCLAIMER # 1 – “This book is independently authored and published and is NOT affiliated in any way with the musical Six.”

DISCLAIMER # 2 – I have a vested interest in the long ignored Anna of Cleves (number 4) having written A ROYAL MESS – a comedy of errors dealing with her six month marriage to Henry – adapted from the French “La Jument du Roi” (The King’s Mare) by Jean Canolle. Anna spoke no English but she kept her head!

DISCLAIMER # 3 – I love the Tudor historical novels by Philippa Gregory as does Harriet Marsden. I highly recommend them.

And now to this well put together, easy to read, Royal magenta (a nod to all the blood shed) and puce colored (or is it lilac or purple?) hard covered, Royal Spark Notes type, handbook version by Ms. Marsden.

It is an up to date, first person narrative by each Queen. With “family tree” individual “profiles” and “TIMELINE” for easy reference so that one can sort out the very complicated relationships of the extremely horny Tudors.

Henry’s mother speaks up as well as Mary and Elizabeth.

But for some odd reason I kept hearing the sharply acerbic voice of Joan Rivers as each wife in turn tells her sob story chock full of historical tidbits, trivia and travails with a smattering of Spanish, French, German to help give them some individuality with some timeless profanity and anachronistic expressions to bring it into the 21st century.

And therein lies a problem. They all sound alike in this concise, spicy history lesson. By the time we get to Catherine Parr, Henry’s last, we are as tired of his wives as he was of them.

The following are some of their quotable helpful hints for survival:

“A selfish man will always throw it back in your face when he doesn’t get what he wants.”

“Out of great suffering can come great, professional opportunity.”

“Give a spoilt boy an ax and he becomes a man who chops down trees or chops off heads.”

“You do not have to look good to be hot.”

“Bide your time and wait for your revenge.”

“Judge a man on how he treats his wife in life – not how he remembers her in death.”

“Nothing stays secret for long when it comes to sex and scandal.”

“NEVER put in writing what you wouldn’t want your mother to read. And don’t sign it.”

“If a woman can read and teach herself there is no reason why she can’t do anything a man does. Better probably.”

“Let’s just say prayer isn’t the only useful thing you can do on your knees.”

“There’s none so sensitive as a man who can’t get it up.”

“Fake it if you have to.”

And above all “To thine own self be true” – No! That’s Shakespeare!

In all seriousness... Stay focused. Outsmart him. Or whomever. Take neither nonsense nor gruff behavior and you will hopefully come out ahead.

There is always a way to succeed.

192 pages Ulysses Press


  
04-05-21