Thursday, September 17, 2009

Book Review: THE MEMOIRS OF MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS by Carolly Erickson

To begin lets open with a quote from Carolly. This is her disclaimer.
"Just a reminder that in this historical entertainment, authentic history and imaginative invention are blended, so that fictional events and circumstances, fictional characters and fictional alterations to the past intertwine. Fresh interpretations of past personalities and events are offered, and traditional ones laid aside."

With that being said we can get to the novel.

I do enjoy a good story especially a romantic one. I enjoyed this novel but at the same time I did not. I loved that it is a Mary Queen of Scots story, Carolly painted a vivid picture of Marys story. On the other hand I found the story at times was so far fetched that I could not help but not like portions of it. The whole story is based off of what if Bothwell was more to Mary, or what if he never was imprisoned?

The beginning was profound, Carolly set the stage of Mary's execution with the narrator referring to himself as "Jamie". Jamie was to witness the execution, during which he was trying to meet her gaze.
"At the very last, before she died, she saw me. I swear she did. I saw her lips mouth the words: Jamie. My Jamie.......Margaret told me afterwards that she thought Mary had been trying to say: Jesus when her lips moved. But it wasn't Jesus, it was Jamie"
3/5 Muses because it was a good read but I could not stop thinking that there was no way the real Mary did the things that she did in the novel. Normally I am not one to be a big person on historically accuracy but there was one big event that I could not accept as Mary's doing. My mind would not let me accept it. I Liked it but did not love it. A recommended read for any die hard Mary fan.


  1. Thanks for the info on the book. I am not a Mary fan but I do enjoy reading about her - kind of like how when you pass a wreck on the highway you don't want to look but you HAVE to? Lol.

  2. I like reading about Mary too so maybe I'll have to check this book out one of these days.

  3. Thanks for the review! I read The Other Queen awhile ago and found Mary absolutely fascinating. What was different about Erickson's portrayal of Mar from others you've read?

  4. Robin, that is how I came to read about her too. It was the car accident I could not look away from.

  5. Laura, it was a good historical fiction entertainment. You would like it, I know it. A very interesting spin on Mary and Bothwell's relationship.

  6. Rosemary, I read The Other Queen too. I liked it much more than many other people did. I think Gregory portaided Mary more in the realistic light as far as personality traits are concerned. Ruthless and to the point.

    Erickson played to the more sympathetic point of view. Mary being more of a vulnerable love sick young woman, Loosing man after man. Still she believed in divine right and did scheme to escape. Carolly gave her good reasons for her actions. She put a "twist" on Mary I NEVER saw coming.


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