I don't like Queen Victoria. I try, I really do, but I can't stand her. At least, fictional portrayals of her. I only read this book because Carolyn Meyer wrote it.
Victoria certainly had a rough childhood and I totally sympathize for her with that monster of a mother. Given all that, I do understand why she developed the way she did and why she did the things she did. Carolyn Meyer does a great job drawing these connections, too.
And yet, I still don't like her.
Bratty, haughty, bossy, foolish, impulsive, naive, ugh, I can't muster up an ounce of liking for Victoria. I get that evil John was scheming for power when he tried to convince her she wasn't mature or aware enough to be queen. I get it, and I don't like him at all for it.
But, seriously, the guy had a point.
Four stars for Carolyn Meyer (and boy did this book make me appreciate her even more!) because the book is well written and should appeal to Victoria fans or those looking for an introduction, but 2 stars for my actual level of enjoyment because, gah, I really don't like Victoria.
Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Cleopatra VII by Kristiana Gregory
I've liked Kristiana Gregory's other books in the Royal Diaries series, and while this one is good, I don't know, I just didn't love it as much. Maybe it's because I'm more familiar with Cleopatra?
A large part of my disappointment comes from the loose approach Kristiana Gregory took with history here. Cleopatra meets people and minor events happen here that fall into the "possible but not backed up by history" category.
I'm not hugely bothered because I guess it could have happened, but I really wish she would have stuck with the known events instead. What she did write was nice and engaging and made for a good but not particularly memorable story. I prefer Carolyn Meyer's take on Cleopatra's childhood.
Rating: 3 out of 5