Wednesday 6 April 2016

Review Time! - Eliza Rose by Lucy Worsley

Eliza RoseTitle: Eliza Rose

Author: Lucy Worsley

Genre: Kids, Historical Fiction

Release Date: 7 April 2016

Amazon: UK - USA

A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book from the publishers, Bloomsbury Children's/Bloomsbury Publishing Plc, via NetGalley. NetGalley provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.

A children's book, written by uber-awesome presenter and historian, Lucy Worsley?

I heard about it and I was there! I was metaphorically standing at the front with a banner reading 'I heart Lucy,' and jumping up and down, squealing.

So, we have a Tudor-set book, written by one of the most passionate and engaging historians on TV. Bring it on.


Eliza Rose Camperdowne is her father's only child. It's up to her then, to save her family's fortunes.

But the world of Henry VIII's court is not all Eliza had hoped it would be, and she is forced to walk the tightrope of court life, sticking close to her cousin, an ambitious girl named Katherine Howard...

Best bits:

You know what's awesome? When authors know their stuff. And Lucy Worsley knows her stuff. With bells on.

She's able to create a sound Tudor setting without sticking your face in all the detail 'til you're sick to death of it. And she clearly loves history, loves writing in the setting, loves the period.

Worsley's passion is the life-and-soul of this book, complimented by the lovely silhouette-style illustrations at the beginning of each chapter. Sometimes the little things bring a smile to your face ;)

What I also liked is that she doesn't write-down to kids - there's no condescension here, just the story Worsley came to tell.

Also missing is insta-love (thank God!) Instead we have slow-burn and icky-sticky missteps. More realistic, and far more interesting in my view of things.

Not so great bits:

This isn't a quick read - the chapters are bite-sized, but I tended to take breaks between them to allow my whirring brain to take things in a bit; there's a lot going on here!

And it's not one for very young readers, for sure, but ages 12-13+ (dependent on the maturity levels of the kids involved,) should be able to cope with the violence and facts-of-life/sex references.

Not all parents will be happy with the honest approach Worsley employs. There are references which the prudish will not want little Jimmy or Jenny to read.

I personally would also have loved just a chapter or two more at the end to round things off.

But that's me - I just would've liked to bask in the ending a bit more!


This is a great book.

This book is perfect for any fan of Tudor-period drama, and any fan of historical intrigue told through the eyes of an ordinary girl in an extraordinary situation.

I think you'll enjoy this, I did!


  1. It seems like this one missed the target audience by a little bit but it was still such a good book! I love the idea of the Tudor time setting because that interests me so much. Looks like a worthy read for myself :3

    1. It depends on the kid when it comes to the target audience. Myself at aged 12 would've been fine with it, but then I think I was born at the mental age of about 40.

      I think that kids books do need to challenge what we think should be in a kids' book occasionally - and this does that.

      And it's definitely a worth-while read! Lucy Worsley totally knows the subject - inside and out - so you're in safe hands!


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