100 books like The Constant Princess

By Philippa Gregory,

Here are 100 books that The Constant Princess fans have personally recommended if you like The Constant Princess. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Bring Up the Bodies

Ken Parejko Author Of Kasia's Story

From my list on the conflict between personal spirituality and religion.

Why am I passionate about this?

It was during the epistemological craziness around the year 2000 that I christened myself a truth warrior. I was already a scientist. Yet I knew there were other important truths, not of the mind but of the heart, truths we discover and marvel over in the realm of art. So as a biology professor I was granted a sabbatical to write the second of three of my novels, about Pliny the Elder. It is through literature, some of my own making, that I find new ways of seeing and experiencing the world: and of discovering and validating what is true, and what is not.

Ken's book list on the conflict between personal spirituality and religion

Ken Parejko Why did Ken love this book?

Though I did enjoy the earlier Wolf Hall I found Bring Up the Bodies more readable and compelling.

Hilary Mantel paints intimate word pictures of Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, and especially Thomas Cromwell, struggling to make his way through the minefield of political intrigue at Henry’s court. Though it is against almost every principle he holds dear, Cromwell charts a course which one step at a time ultimately brings Anne Boleyn down.

Finding himself in an almost impossible situation, he agonizes over every decision, looking at it from many sides: legal, political, ethical, spiritual, and religious. Meanwhile not far in the background we see the Church’s Pope Clement trying desperately, like Oz’s man behind the curtain, to control events.

Mantel’s genius was her ability to transform dry history into compelling, character-driven stories.

By Hilary Mantel,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Bring Up the Bodies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Man Booker Prize

The second book in Hilary Mantel's award-winning Wolf Hall trilogy, with a stunning new cover design to celebrate the publication of the much anticipated The Mirror and the Light

An astounding literary accomplishment, Bring Up the Bodies is the story of this most terrifying moment of history, by one of our greatest living novelists.

'Our most brilliant English writer' Guardian

Bring Up the Bodies unlocks the darkly glittering court of Henry VIII, where Thomas Cromwell is now chief minister. With Henry captivated by plain Jane Seymour and rumours of Anne Boleyn's faithlessness whispered by…


Book cover of The Six Wives of Henry VIII

Janet Wertman Author Of Jane the Quene

From my list on for Tudor fans.

Why am I passionate about this?

By day, I am a freelance grant writer for impactful nonprofits…but by night I indulge a passion for the Tudor era I have harbored since I was eight years old and my parents let me stay up late to watch The Six Wives of Henry VIII and Elizabeth R. My Seymour Saga took me deep into one of the era’s central families – and now I am working on my follow up Regina trilogy, exploring Elizabeth’s journey from bastard to icon. I also run a blog where I post interesting takes on the Tudors – I need somewhere to share all the fascinating tidbits I can’t cram into my books!

Janet's book list on for Tudor fans

Janet Wertman Why did Janet love this book?

This is non-fiction that reads as smoothly as fiction (except it’s all true); there is also a “sequel” about his children that is well worth a read. Lately, Weir has been writing novels set in the period, but I don’t like her fiction nearly as much as I love her non-fiction!

By Alison Weir,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Six Wives of Henry VIII as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the most powerful monarchs in British history, Henry VIII ruled England in unprecedented splendour.

In this remarkable composite biography, Alison Weir brings Henry's six wives vividly to life, revealing each as a distinct and compelling personality in her own right. Drawing upon the rich fund of documentary material from the Tudor period, The Six Wives of Henry VIII shows us a court where personal needs frequently influenced public events and where a life of gorgeously ritualised pleasure was shot through with ambition, treason and violence.

'At last we have the truth about Henry VIII's wives. This book is…


Book cover of Confession of Katherine Howard

Elizabeth Fremantle Author Of Queen's Gambit

From my list on the wives of Henry VIII.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even in childhood, I was struck by the sheer horror and tragedy of Henry VIII’s wives, women who had a place at the heart of power and managed, some more so than others, to influence the politics of their time, yet were powerless to save themselves when the wind changed. It was a fascinating and turbulent period that saw England rise from a provincial backwater to become an important player in European politics, bringing the social and cultural changes that sewed the seeds of our modern world. Exploring the period through the prism of women’s lives is a major aim of all my six novels.

Elizabeth's book list on the wives of Henry VIII

Elizabeth Fremantle Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Susannah Dunn has a way of putting you right inside history with her instinctive and impeccable descriptive writing. She has fictionalised the stories of a number of Tudor women and all are excellent but I’ve chosen this as it was the first of hers I read. It tells of Henry VIII’s tragic fifth wife, a teenager pushed into the King’s bed by her ambitious family. The story unfolds through the eyes of her companion – an intimate insider’s view, typical of Dunn’s work – who witnesses everything but is powerless to help. Without giving too much away, it doesn’t end well.

By Suzannah Dunn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Confession of Katherine Howard as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When 12-year-old Katherine Howard comes to live in the Duchess of Norfolk's household, poor relation Cat Tilney is deeply suspicious. The two girls couldn't be more different: Cat, watchful and ambitious; Katherine, interested only in clothes and boys. Their companions are in thrall to Katherine, but it's Cat in whom Katherine confides and, despite herself, Cat is drawn to her. Summoned to court at 17, Katherine leaves Cat in the company of her ex-lover, Francis, and the two begin their own, much more serious, love affair.

Within months, the king has set aside his Dutch wife Anne for Katherine. The…


The Woman at the Wheel

By Penny Haw,

Book cover of The Woman at the Wheel

Penny Haw Author Of The Invincible Miss Cust

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Storyteller Dog walker Dreamer Runner Reader

Penny's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Inspiring historical fiction based on the real life of Bertha Benz, whose husband built the first prototype automobile, which eventually evolved into the Mercedes-Benz marque.

"Unfortunately, only a girl again."

From a young age, Cäcilie Bertha Ringer is fascinated by her father's work as a master builder in Pforzheim, Germany. But those five words, which he wrote next to her name in the family Bible, haunt Bertha.

Years later, Bertha meets Carl Benz and falls in love—with him and his extraordinary dream of building a horseless carriage. Bertha has such faith in him that she invests her dowry in his…

The Woman at the Wheel

By Penny Haw,

What is this book about?

Inspiring historical fiction based on the real life of Bertha Benz, whose husband built the first prototype automobile, which eventually evolved into the Mercedes-Benz marque.

"Unfortunately, only a girl again."

From a young age, Cacilie Bertha Ringer is fascinated by her father's work as a master builder in Pforzheim, Germany. But those five words, which he wrote next to her name in the family Bible, haunt Bertha.

Years later, Bertha meets Carl Benz and falls in love-with him and his extraordinary dream of building a horseless carriage. Bertha has such faith in him that she invests her dowry in his…


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Book cover of Lamentation

Elizabeth Fremantle Author Of Queen's Gambit

From my list on the wives of Henry VIII.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even in childhood, I was struck by the sheer horror and tragedy of Henry VIII’s wives, women who had a place at the heart of power and managed, some more so than others, to influence the politics of their time, yet were powerless to save themselves when the wind changed. It was a fascinating and turbulent period that saw England rise from a provincial backwater to become an important player in European politics, bringing the social and cultural changes that sewed the seeds of our modern world. Exploring the period through the prism of women’s lives is a major aim of all my six novels.

Elizabeth's book list on the wives of Henry VIII

Elizabeth Fremantle Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Part of Sansom’s acclaimed Shardlake series, this novel takes a different look at Henry’s last wife, Katherine Parr. It is a thrilling dive into the plots of Parr’s life and her seditious writings from the perspective of Sansom’s eponymous fictional investigator. Detailed and enthralling we are transported to the streets of Tudor London, to explore the shadowy corners where danger lurks. 

By C.J. Sansom,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lamentation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Perfect for fans of Hilary Mantel's The Mirror and The Light, Matthew Shardlake is back in the sixth book in the Shardlake series, from number one bestselling author C. J. Sansom.

'When it comes to intriguing Tudor-based narratives, Hilary Mantel has a serious rival' - Sunday Times
'Sansom has the trick of writing an enthralling narrative. Like Hilary Mantel, he produces densely textured historical novels that absorb their readers in another time' - Andrew Taylor, Spectator

England, 1546: King Henry VIII is slowly, painfully dying. His Protestant and Catholic councillors are engaged in a final and decisive power struggle; whoever…


Book cover of Catherine of Aragon: Infanta of Spain, Queen of England

Zita Eva Rohr Author Of Yolande of Aragon (1381-1442) Family and Power: The Reverse of the Tapestry

From my list on premodern women of power and influence.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was a child, I was forever drawing pictures of princesses in elaborate medieval and early modern dress. I devoured history books—especially those containing artworks that helped me visualize the people whose names rang out from their pages. Inexplicably, I was passionate about France and French language and culture from my primary school years. Then, in my early twenties, I stumbled onto Umberto Eco’s, The Name of the Rose, which appeared in English translation around 1983. History has been, and remains, my passion (as do whodunits). I have been passionately obsessed with in my research for over two decades—uncovering the truth that lies beneath the spin and the ashes.  

Zita's book list on premodern women of power and influence

Zita Eva Rohr Why did Zita love this book?

Theresa starts our journey into the past life of Catherine of Aragon, whom many regard very mistakenly as a victim, with a pair of shoes, a painting, a rosary, a fur-trimmed baby blanket. She shows us how each of these things took meaning from the ways Catherine experienced and perceived them. Upon these traces and fragments, her portrait of Catherine emerges, and we glimpse her life lived five centuries ago. Engagingly written by Theresa in her clear and elegant prose, her cultural and emotional biography of Catherine truly brings us closer to understanding her life from her own perspective.

By Theresa Earenfight,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Catherine of Aragon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Catherine of Aragon is an elusive subject.

Despite her status as a Spanish infanta, Princess of Wales, and Queen of England, few of her personal letters have survived, and she is obscured in the contemporary royal histories. In this evocative biography, Theresa Earenfight presents an intimate and engaging portrait of Catherine told through the objects that she left behind.

A pair of shoes, a painting, a rosary, a fur-trimmed baby blanket-each of these things took meaning from the ways Catherine experienced and perceived them. Through an examination of the inventories listing the few possessions Catherine owned at her death, Earenfight…


Book cover of The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn

Natalia Richards Author Of The Falcon's Flight

From my list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m Natalia Richards and I have written two novels on Anne Boleyn. My passion for Tudor stuff began over 50 years ago after watching the film Anne of the Thousand Days. I’d always loved the Tudors and by the 1980’s had a go at writing a novel about her. Sadly, it descended into a bodice ripper. It was a first try though, and I still have it if ever I want a good laugh. It took me until the new millennium to start seriously writing and I’m sure there is not a single book out there that I have not read about Anne! 

Natalia's book list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative

Natalia Richards Why did Natalia love this book?

This book is considered by many to be ‘the bible’ for all Anne Boleyn fans and I imagine it is the number one go-to book. Covering her life from birth to death, it is so scholarly that I use it constantly as a reference book. 

What is good is that it fully exposes the circumstances that led to Anne’s death, and you can clearly see how it came about – and why the king had to get rid of her. But it is not a dry textbook. Everyone can enjoy it as it’s easy to read, hard to put down, and immaculately researched.

If you are thinking about writing about Anne Boleyn this must be your first reference book. In fact, if you buy only one book about Anne, this is it. 

By Eric Ives,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This definitive biography of Anne Boleyn establishes her as a figure of considerable importance and influence in her own right.

A full biography of Anne Boleyn, based on the latest scholarly research. Focusses on Anne's life and legacy and establishes Anne as a figure of considerable importance and influence in her own right. Adulteress or innocent victim? Looks afresh at the issues at the heart of Anne's downfall. Pays attention to her importance as a patron of the arts, particularly in relation to Hans Holbein. Presents evidence about Anne's spirituality and her interest in the intellectual debates of the period.…


Book cover of The Lady in the Tower: The Fall of Anne Boleyn

Natalia Richards Author Of The Falcon's Flight

From my list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m Natalia Richards and I have written two novels on Anne Boleyn. My passion for Tudor stuff began over 50 years ago after watching the film Anne of the Thousand Days. I’d always loved the Tudors and by the 1980’s had a go at writing a novel about her. Sadly, it descended into a bodice ripper. It was a first try though, and I still have it if ever I want a good laugh. It took me until the new millennium to start seriously writing and I’m sure there is not a single book out there that I have not read about Anne! 

Natalia's book list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative

Natalia Richards Why did Natalia love this book?

I read this book many years ago as it covers the imprisonment and execution of Queen Anne Boleyn.

With its immense detail, it is one of the few books you need to read on this later period of Anne's life. Best of all, the author has reassessed the evidence and done away with romantic misconceptions. It is therefore an utterly reliable resource. The storytelling is superb, easy to read, and, again, hard to put down.

I return to it again and again for reference material but it still makes a gripping holiday read.

By Alison Weir,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Lady in the Tower as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Nearly five hundred years after her violent death, Anne Boleyn, second wife to Henry VIII, remains one of the world's most fascinating, controversial, and tragic heroines. Now acclaimed historian and bestselling author Alison Weir has drawn on myriad sources from the Tudor era to give us the first book that examines, in unprecedented depth, the gripping, dark, and chilling story of Anne Boleyn's final days.

The tempestuous love affair between Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn scandalized Christendom and altered forever the religious landscape of England. Anne's ascent from private gentlewoman to queen was astonishing, but equally compelling was her shockingly…


Book cover of Jane the Quene

Judith Arnopp Author Of A Matter of Conscience: Henry VIII, The Aragon Years

From my list on that illustrate life at the Tudor Court.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading Historical Fiction as a youngster led me to study history at university – so the Tudors have been part of my life for about forty years now. After graduating with a Master’s degree, my career choice was easy. Of my thirteen novels, ten are Tudor, covering among others, the lives of Margaret Beaufort, Elizabeth of York, Anne Boleyn, Katheryn Parr, Mary Tudor, and King Henry VIII himself. It isn’t necessarily ‘normal’ to live in such close proximity to the Tudors, but I would be hard pushed to write in a modern setting. Give me an ill-lit chamber, a royal banquet, or even a grisly beheading and I am perfectly at home.

Judith's book list on that illustrate life at the Tudor Court

Judith Arnopp Why did Judith love this book?

This book provides a different angle on Jane Seymour. I’ve never particularly ‘liked’ fictional Janes because they are usually so one-dimensional but this author delves more deeply. Jane’s character is subtle. On the surface she seems meek but beneath the façade she is quite determined to get what she wants. Often, the modern ideal of strong women doesn’t sit well on historical figures but J. Wertman has understood that subterfuge was often the only way for a female, even a queen, to get her own way. Janet Wertman has written other engaging Tudor books but this is my favourite.

By Janet Wertman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Jane the Quene as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"One of the Best Books of 2016" - Open Letters Monthly; Finalist, 2016 Novel of the Year - Underground Book Reviews; Semi-Finalist - 2017 M.M. Bennetts Award

All Jane Seymour wants is a husband; but when she catches the eye of a volatile king, she is pulled deep into the Tudor court's realm of plot and intrigue....

England. 1535. Jane Seymour is 27 years old and increasingly desperate to marry and secure her place in the world. When the court visits Wolf Hall, the Seymour ancestral manor, Jane has the perfect opportunity to shine: her diligence, efficiency, and newfound poise…


Book cover of Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII

Natalia Richards Author Of The Falcon's Flight

From my list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m Natalia Richards and I have written two novels on Anne Boleyn. My passion for Tudor stuff began over 50 years ago after watching the film Anne of the Thousand Days. I’d always loved the Tudors and by the 1980’s had a go at writing a novel about her. Sadly, it descended into a bodice ripper. It was a first try though, and I still have it if ever I want a good laugh. It took me until the new millennium to start seriously writing and I’m sure there is not a single book out there that I have not read about Anne! 

Natalia's book list on Tudor that are informative and imaginative

Natalia Richards Why did Natalia love this book?

I love David Starkey’s style of writing and can hear his voice come through as I read it.

What I like is that book covers all the wives of King Henry in one volume, and it’s great to have all the information in one place. It’s a good starter book for anyone wishing to get a feel for the whole period, too. It’s a big volume but not dull and dusty. Each wife is dealt with separately and so it’s an easy book to pick up where you left off.

By David Starkey,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Six Wives as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What makes a man marry six times? Was Henry VIII a voracious philanderer? On the contrary, says Dr David Starkey, the King was seeking happiness -- as well as hoping for a son. The first of his wives was Catherine of Aragon, the pious Catholic princess who suffered years of miscarriages and still births and yet failed to produce a male heir. As Henry VIII's interest shifted from her powerful Hapsburg relations and drifted towards France, so began his obsession with the pretty Lutheran Anne Boleyn. Jane Seymour's submissiveness was in contrast to Anne's vampish style -- and Henry married…


Book cover of Katharine Parr, The Sixth Wife

Tracy Borman Author Of Thomas Cromwell: The Untold Story Of Henry VIII's Most Faithful Servant

From my list on life in Tudor times.

Why am I passionate about this?

Tracy Borman is a historian and novelist specialising in the Tudor period and has written a number of best-selling books, including The Private Lives of the Tudors, Thomas Cromwell, and Elizabeth’s Women. She is also a popular broadcaster and has presented numerous history documentaries, including Channel 5’s The Fall of Anne Boleyn and Inside the Tower of London. Alongside this, she is the joint Chief Curator of Historic Royal Palaces and Chief Executive of the Heritage Education Trust.

Tracy's book list on life in Tudor times

Tracy Borman Why did Tracy love this book?

The last in this stunning Six Wives series, this novel brings Henry VIII’s last wife to life as never before. Impeccably researched and with stunning period detail, this book paints a vivid picture of how women had to battle for survival in the Tudor world.

By Alison Weir,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Katharine Parr, The Sixth Wife as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A detailed and convincing portrait of an extraordinary life... this series is a serious achievement' THE TIMES

'This brilliant series has brought Henry VIII's six wives to life as never before. This novel will enthral and inspire, just as much as it will break your heart' TRACY BORMAN

Alison Weir, historian and author of the SUNDAY TIMES bestselling SIX TUDOR QUEENS series, recounts the story of Henry VIII's last wife - Katharine Parr, the queen who survived him.

---

A WOMAN TORN BETWEEN LOVE AND DUTY.

Two husbands dead, a boy and a sick man. And now Katharine is free…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in queens, King Henry VIII, and Spain?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about queens, King Henry VIII, and Spain.

Queens Explore 86 books about queens
King Henry VIII Explore 48 books about King Henry VIII
Spain Explore 195 books about Spain