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The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels Reading Order : Where to Start with Philippa Gregory’s ‘Cousins’ War’ and ‘Tudor Court’ series?

I’m living in France in a city where the Plantagenet used to live at one point, so I heard of them (like all of England), but if you are not in Europe, you probably know more about the Tudors. Well, Philippa Gregory wrote about all of them and some of her books had been adapted into movies and TV shows, so you probably have heard of them. If you want to read more, here is a little guide put together (not by me, thanks to Carole) in order to travel in the past in order.

What are The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels by Philippa Gregory?

Like I said, they are historical novels. Previously separated as the Tudor Court and Cousins’ War series, as of August 2016 Philippa Gregory lists these novels as one series, The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels.

Like the name tells it, it is a series about the two British royal houses, the history being told through the female prism.

The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels Reading Order

Gregory didn’t write her novels in chronological order, The Other Boleyn Girl being the first one published in 2001 and The Last Tudor being the last one in August 2017.

The author suggested herself a reading order, based on the real-world chronology of historical figures and events

I. Cousin’s War

  

  1. The Lady of the Rivers – The story is narrated by Jacquetta of Luxembourg, mother of Elizabeth Woodville, and covers the reign of the Lancastrian King Henry VI.
  2. The White Queen – It tells the story of Elizabeth Woodville, queen consort of King Edward IV of England.
  3. The Red Queen – It is the story of Margaret Beaufort, mother of Henry VII of England.
  4. The Kingmaker’s Daughter – It is the story of Anne Neville, wife of Richard III of England.

 

  1. The White Princess – It is the story of Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV of England and Elizabeth Woodville, and later wife of Henry VII and mother of Henry VIII.
  2. The Constant Princess – The novel depicts a highly fictionalized version of the life of Catherine of Aragon and her rise to power in England.
  3. The King’s Curse – It follows the adult life of Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury, the daughter of George Plantagenet, 1st Duke of Clarence and Isabel Neville.

II. Tudor Court

  

  1. Three Sisters, Three Queens – It tells the stories of Margaret Tudor, Mary Tudor, Queen of France and Katherine of Aragon, three close friends, who became the queens of England, Scotland and France.
  2. The Other Boleyn Girl – During the 16th century, Mary and Anne Boleyn are two sisters who hail from a wealthy family join the court of King Henry VIII. Soon rivalry, scandal and hunger for power result in one’s downfall.
  3. The Boleyn Inheritance – The novel is told through the first-person narratives of – Anne of Cleves, Katherine Howard, and Jane Boleyn. It covers a period from 1539 until 1542 and chronicles the fourth and fifth marriages of King Henry VIII of England.
  4. The Taming of the Queen – It tells the story of Kateryn Parr, the last wife of Henry VIII of England.

   

  1. The Queen’s Fool – The novel chronicles the changing fortunes of Mary I of England and her half-sister Elizabeth through the eyes of the fictional Hannah Green, a Marrano girl escaping to England from Spain where her mother was burned at the stake for being Jewish.
  2. The Virgin’s Lover (Elizabeth I, Robert Dudley and Amy Robsart) – The portrait of the first years of Elizabeth I’s reign.
  3. The Last Tudor – It features Lady Jane Grey, and her two sisters, each of whom dared to defy her queen.
  4. The Other Queen – It chronicles the long imprisonment in England of Mary, Queen of Scots. The story is told from three points of view: Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots; Elizabeth Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury, also known as Bess of Hardwick; and George Talbot, the 6th Earl of Shrewsbury.

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10 Comments

  1. Anjaana

    Can’t thank you enough for this website. It’s wonderful.

  2. Robert OLeary

    This list numbers the books 1 thru 11, then an additional 4 books as 8 thru 11. Are we to assume that the second list of 8 thru 11 is meant to be 12 thru 15 ?

  3. Diana Thornbro

    I just purchased this whole lot at an estate sale. The Cousin’s War Series is 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7. 6 is part of the Tudor Series. Would you recommend reading them in 1 to 7 order, or include 6? I’m a bit overwhelmed at the moment. Thank you!

    • Fabien

      It’s a little bit difficult without titles, I wouldn’t want to tell you something wrong.

      In a chronogical order, The Cousin’s War Series goes as follows :

      The Lady of the Rivers
      The White Queen
      The Red Queen
      The Kingmaker’s Daughter
      The White Princess
      The King’s Curse

      I suppose you have a problem with “The Constant Princess” and where to read it, as it is normally part of the Tudor series. The period is overlapping with the King’s Curse. For chronological reason, The Constant Princess is generally placed before King’s Curse.

      In the end, you can still read it when you want, as all stories can be read independantly from the other.

      • Diana

        Yes, that’s where I was struggling. Thank you so much! Very helpful.

    • Luc

      Hey Diana,
      I would read 6 & 7 as a starting point for the Tudor series.
      Greetings, Luc

  4. Linda

    Where does The Las Tudor fall in the reading order?

    • Allie

      According to the article, between The Virgin’s Lover and The Other Queen.

  5. Jomelyn R. Sayangda

    Hello.. thank you the list is big help to start my collection of Philipa G’s books.. but how about books like of the Meridon, The Favoured Child and Changeling? Can u enlighten me further? Thank you☺

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