Atlantic Monthly Press
Atlantic Monthly Press
Atlantic Monthly Press

Anne Boleyn & Elizabeth I

The Mother and Daughter Who Forever Changed British History

by Tracy Borman

Anne Boleyn may be best known for losing her head, but as Tudor expert Tracy Borman reveals in a book that recasts British history, her greatest legacy lies in the path-breaking reign of her daughter, Elizabeth

  • Imprint Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Page Count 320
  • Publication Date June 20, 2023
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-6206-9
  • Dimensions 6" x 9"
  • US List Price $29.00
  • Imprint Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Publication Date June 20, 2023
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-6133-8
  • US List Price $29.00

Much of the fascination with Britain’s legendary Tudors centers around the dramas surrounding Henry VIII and his six wives and Elizabeth I’s rumored liaisons. Yet the most fascinating relationship in that historic era may well be that between the mother and daughter who, individually and collectively, changed the course of British history.

The future Queen Elizabeth was not yet three when her mother, Anne Boleyn, was beheaded on May 19, 1536, on Henry’s order, incensed that she had not given him a son and tired of her contentious nature. Elizabeth had been raised away from court, rarely even seeing Anne; and after her death, Henry tried in every way to erase Anne’s presence and memory. At that moment in history, few could have predicted that mother and daughter would each leave enduring, and interlocked, legacies. Yet as Tracy Borman reveals in this first-ever joint portrait, both women broke the mold for British queens and for women in general at the time. Anne was instrumental in reforming and reshaping forever Britain’s religious traditions, and her years of wielding power over a male-dominated court provided an inspiring role model for Elizabeth’s glittering and unprecedented 45-year reign. Indeed, Borman shows how much Elizabeth—most visibly by refusing to ever marry, but in many other more subtle ways that defined her court—was influenced by her mother’s legacy.

In its originality, Anne Boleyn & Elizabeth I sheds new light on two of history’s most famous women—the private desires, hopes, and fears that lay behind their dazzling public personas, and the surprising influence each had on the other during and after their lifetimes. In the process, Tracy Borman reframes our understanding of the entire Tudor era.

Praise for Crown & Sceptre:

An Amazon Best History Book of the Month

“Engaging and perceptive . . . Given its extensive timeframe and diverse cast of characters, Crown & Sceptre could easily have become little more than a potted history of Britain from 1066 to the present. But while Ms. Borman offers deft and thoughtful assessments of every reign . . . the chronological approach is enriched by details that help to humanize her subjects.”—Stephen Brumwell, Wall Street Journal

“Tracy Borman’s Crown & Sceptre brings us in short, vivid chapters from William the Conqueror to Elizabeth herself, much of it constituting a dark record of bumping off adversaries, rivals and spouses, confiscating vast estates and military invasions . . . Though dynastic troubles are woven into the fabric of British history, it is only one element in this lucid, character-rich book. Throughout, Borman traces the changing relationship between a weakening crown and the growing power and makeup of Parliament, the country’s true ruler since the 17th century.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Tracy Borman packs nearly 1,000 years of royal history into this look at the men and women who have ruled Britain. It’s a wide-ranging crew—sometimes worthy, sometimes not so much. And yet the monarchy has endured. Borman’s deep understanding of English royalty shines.”—Amazon Book Review

“An entertaining one-volume compendium of the conquests (political and amorous), successes, failures, triumphs, skullduggeries, and follies of 41 monarchs dating from 1066 to the present . . . An effective, quick walk through the players and their times.”—Arts Fuse

“Prolific British historian Borman outdoes herself in this expansive survey. Writing with a fluidity and grace matched by her authority on the subject, the author makes the stories of each monarch, from the incompetent to the sadistic to the praiseworthy, interesting and memorable . . . Borman observes that the British monarchy has prevailed because it understands that its power is largely symbolic, shaping and supporting British culture and an enormous tourism industry. After reading this splendid book, readers may bet on its survival, at least in this century. A superb synthesis of historical analysis, politics, and top-notch royal gossip.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“[Borman] convincingly argues that the British crown survived when others did not because it adapted to changing times . . . [She] brings the royals to life in all their triumphs and tragedies using their stories to unpack complex issues of governance, succession, and geopolitics . . . Crisp, clear writing, insightful character sketches, and unifying themes keep the narrative moving along. Compact chapters organized by dynasty and reign, notes, and an extensive bibliography make it suitable for reference.”—Booklist

“An elegant and evenhanded chronicle of the British monarchy . . . Enlightening and accessible, this is a superb introduction to one of the world’s most enduring monarchies.”—Publishers Weekly