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Karleen Bradford.
Richmond Hill, ON: Scholastic-TAB, 1986.
200pp., paper, $3.95.
ISBN 0-590-71617-4. CIP.

Subject Heading:
Grey, Jane, Lady, 1537-1554-Juvenile fiction.

Grades 8 and up / Ages 13 and up

Reviewed by Joan McGrath.

Volume 15 Number 1
1987 January

It is a tragedy of long ago, yet the story of Lady Jane Grey, the "Nine Days Queen," has never lost its sombre fascination over the more than four hundred years since her death.

She was hardly more than a child, and of royal blood descended from a sister of King Henry VIII. When her cousin Edward VI died, scheming politicians, among them Jane's own callous parents, tried to usurp the Crown of England by using the defenceless girl as a puppet monarch, setting aside the rightful Queen, Mary Tudor. The Protestant coup proved unsuccessful. After a reign of nine days, Queen Jane and her husband Guilford Dudley were arrested and imprisoned. Shortly after her sixteenth birthday, Lady Jane Grey was beheaded on Tower Green, the helpless victim of those who should have protected her.

The Nine Days Queen is not only a convincingly life-like portrait of an unhappy young woman, but, as well, accurately suggests the machiavellian Tudor politics that led to her untimely death. This title is surely the kind of material with which to convince young readers who reject historical fiction that, after all, they are missing something very, very good.

Joan McGrath, Toronto Board of Educution, Toronto, ON.
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