Edmond Lau Lau itibaren Texas
once again, probably my favourite author delivers. short strories from 1963 to 1981. The title story went on to become the basis for Total Recall. Some excellent works included in this collection. "The Pre-Persons" for example.
In-between the short reigns of Edward and Mary, two of Henry VIII’s progeny, there was Lady Jane Grey, a cousin of theirs, who ruled for a mere nine days. My first heads-up about her (after running across her name on some list of British royalty) was in the film Lady Jane with Helena Bonham-Carter in the title role. As the first daughter of Frances Brandon (daughter of Mary Tudor, Henry VIII’s sister, and Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk) and Henry Grey, Jane was deliberately hoisted onto the throne after Edward’s untimely death for the sole political purposes of enriching her parents, the family name, as well as prevented a Catholic relapse in England should Mary ascent the throne. That is, a power vacuum was deliberately created to crown Jane and her ill-suited husband (also forced upon her) Queen and King. Said vacuum was premised upon not only a strict interpretation of legitimate succession (precluding both Mary and Elizabeth, as they were made bastards), but also by the clever machinations of Henry Grey and his allies in court who got Edward, on his death-bed, to rewrite the succession with Jane immediately following him. As in her more recent work of historical/biographical fiction, Weir succeeds brilliantly by staying true to the historical record all while creating a very convincing drama that unfolds nearly flawlessly. (I use “nearly” as I’m sure there may be a mistake, grammatical or historical, that I cannot for the life of me detect.) She also includes a perhaps invented or imagined incident in this story that she did to brilliant effect in The Lady Elizabeth; this being the indiscretion between the Lord Admiral and Elizabeth, which greatly effected his marriage to Katherine Parr, the widow queen to the late King Henry VIII. By novel’s end, Jane – now imprisoned in the Tower after Mary’s forces rout the Protestant cause upon the former’s entry into the city of London – holds resolutely to her vow that she will not reconvert to Catholicism in order to be spared beheading; a generous concession made by Mary, even though the latter’s advisors passionately argued in favor of Jane’s immediate death. However, a foolish attempt to re-seize the throne by Jane’s father and his Protestant allies quickly ruled in favor of Mary’s advisors, and Jane was is sent to the scaffold. Tudor history is marked by many a beheading, but it seems neither tiresome nor pointlessly gratuitous here. Weir creates a very human story of a young woman forced by her parents to be something that she has no desire to be -- an age-old conflict between parents and their children, if you really think about it. And it is precisely this on which Weir proves herself to be a consummate narrative writer.