Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Innocent Traitor - Allison Weir
Before reading Innocent Traitor: A Novel of Lady Jane Grey by Allison Weir, I didn’t know much about Jane Grey. I knew that she was beheaded but I had only read bits and pieces about her when she happened to pop up in other stories. I didn’t know anything about her childhood until now. Innocent Traitor was a fantastic book to bring her story to life for me.
Weir does a remarkable job of bringing back to life people from such a different time. The story is written in the first person (in the Reader’s Guide Weir states that she did this to differentiate this story from her nonfiction works) from the point-of-view of multiple people. Usually it bothers me to jump between various views of extremely different people but Weir wrote this wonderfully and the diverse voices easily flowed.
It always fascinates me how hope manages to overtake me even if I know the ending to a story. It doesn’t matter that I know Romeo and Juliet die at the end; there is always that little part of me that hopes somehow they will manage to run off together. The same was true with this story. I knew the fate of Jane Grey, even if I didn’t already know it the story opens with her in the Tower of London after she receives her death sentence, but throughout the whole book I continuously wonder if she might change the ending of her story. I rode a rollercoaster of hope, wondering how she got from various chapters to the Tower, always thinking that maybe the next decision would be the one that actually saves her life. It is a fascinating story, wonderfully told by Weir and I recommend it to anyone interested in how Jane Grey’s story ended the way it did.
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