The Tudor Society

Members’ book recommendations

Thank you so much to those of you who completed our recent survey about Tudor books.

We already have recommended reading lists for Tudor monarchs and various Tudor topics - see the Recommended Reading category, but I thought it would be good to make a list of books that Tudor Society members would recommend, and here it is. Please do leave a comment if you'd like to recommend some books and I can then add them to the list - thank you!


  • The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn by Eric Ives
  • The Six Wives of Henry VIII by Alison Weir
  • Henry VIII: King and Court by Alison Weir
  • Henry VIII and His Court by Neville Williams
  • In the Footsteps of the Six Wives of Henry VIII by Natalie Grueninger and Sarah Morris
  • Anne Boleyn by Marie Louis Bruce
  • Elizabeth I by Anne Somerset
  • England under the Tudors by G.R. Elton
  • God's Secret Agents by Alice Hogge
  • Jane Boleyn: The Infamous Lady Rochford by Julia Fox
  • God's Traitors by Jessie Childs
  • The Stripping of the Altars by Eamon Duffy
  • Edward VI: The Lost King of England by Chris Skidmore
  • The Turbulent Crown: The Story of the Tudor Queens by Roland Hui
  • Six Wives by David Starkey
  • Henry VIII by J.J. Scarisbrick
  • Catherine of Aragon by Giles Tremlett
  • Anne Boleyn by P. Friedmann
  • Anne Boleyn by Joanna Denny
  • Jane Seymour: Henry VIII's True Love by Elizabeth Norton
  • Anne of Cleves: Henry VIII's Discarded Bride by Elizabeth Norton
  • Katherine Howard by Joanna Denny
  • Catherine Parr by Elizabeth Norton
  • Elizabeth I by Alison Weir
  • The Lady in the Tower by Alison Weir
  • The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown by Claire Ridgway
  • The Anne Boleyn Collection and The Anne Boleyn Collection II by Claire Ridgway
  • Katherine Howard: A New History by Conor Byrne
  • Young and Damned and Fair by Gareth Russell
  • Catherine of Aragon by Garrett Mattingly
  • Dark History of the Tudors: Murder, Adultery, Incest, Witchcraft, Wars, Religious Persection, Piracy by Judith John
  • The Wives of Henry VIII by Antonia Fraser
  • Henry VIII by Lacey Baldwin-Smith
  • Elizabeth and Mary: Cousins, Rivals, Queens by Jane Dunn
  • Elizabeth: Apprenticeship (or Elizabeth: The Struggle for the Throne) by David Starkey
  • The Life and Times series edited by Antonia Fraser, e.g. The Life and Times of Elizabeth I by Neville Williams.
  • Katherine the Queen: The Remarkable Life of Katherine Parr, the Last Wife of Henry VIII by Linda Porter
  • Ordeal by Ambition: An English Family in the Shadow of the Tudors by William Seymour
  • Henry VIII: Virtuous Prince by David Starkey
  • Kateryn Parr by Susan E James
  • Lady Jane Grey: A Tudor Mystery by Eric Ives
  • The Sisters Who Would by Queen by Leanda de Lisle
  • The First Queen of England: The Myth of Bloody Mary by Linda Porter
  • The Winter King: The Dawn of Tudor England by Thomas Penn
  • Elizabeth of York by Amy Licence

  • Tudor: A Family Story by Leanda de Lisle
  • George Boleyn: Tudor Poet, Courtier and Diplomat by Clare Cherry and Claire Ridgway
  • Anything by Diarmaid MacCulloch (e.g. Thomas Cranmer, Reformation: Europe's House Divided 1490-1700)
  • Children Of England: The Heirs of King Henry VIII 1547-1558 by Alison Weir
  • Bess of Hardwick: Empire Builder by Mary S. Lovell
  • Thomas Wyatt: The Heart's Forest by Susan Brigden
  • The Lisle Letters
  • The Pilgrimage of Grace 1536-1537 and the Exeter Conspiracy 1538 by Madeline Hope Dodds and Ruth Dodds
  • The Exhibition catalogue by David Starkey of Henry VIII: Man and Monarch
  • The King's Reformation by G.W. Bernard
  • The Books of Henry VIII and His Wives by James Carley
  • The Divorce of Henry VIII by Catherine Fletcher
  • Anne Boleyn's Letter from the Tower by Sandra Vasoli
  • Elizabeth & Leicester by Sarah Gristwood
  • My Heart is My Own: The Life of Mary, Queen of Scots by John Guy
  • Crown of Blood by Nicola Tallis
  • Mary Boleyn by Alison Weir

Tudor Life

  • The Tudor Housewife by Alison Simm
  • How to be a Tudor: A Dawn to Dusk Guide to Everyday Life by Ruth Goodman
  • The Time Traveller's Guide to Elizabethan England by Ian Mortimer
  • Tudor Costume and Fashion by Herbert Norris
  • Everyday Life in Medieval London: From the Anglo-Saxons to the Tudors by Toni Mount
  • Simon Thurley's books on buildings, e.g. The Royal Palaces of Tudor England: Architecture and Court Life, 1460-1547
  • The Tudor Tailor by Jane Malcolm-Davies
  • The Englishman's Food by J.C. Drummond
  • Terrible Tudors from the Horrible Histories series by Terry Deary

Tudor novels

  • The Shardlake Series by C J Sansom
  • The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory
  • Innocent Traitor by Alison Weir
  • Jean Plaidy's Tudor series
  • Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
  • Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel
  • The King's Curse by Philippa Gregory
  • Le Temps Viendra by Sarah Morris
  • Falling Pomegranate Seeds by Wendy J. Dunn
  • Margaret Irwin's trilogy of Elizabeth - Young Bess, Elizabeth Captive Prisoner and Elizabeth and the Prince of Spain
  • Brief Gaudy Hour by Margaret Campbell Barnes
  • The Morland Family Saga by Cynthia Harrod Eagles
  • Legacy by Susan Kay
  • Cor Rotto: A Novel of Catherine Carey by Adrienne Dillard
  • At the Mercy of the Queen by Anne Clinard Barnhill
  • Green Darkness by Anya Seton
  • Margaret George's Tudor novels
  • Falcon's Rise by Natalia Richards
  • Conn Iggulden's Wars of the Roses trilogy
  • The Boleyn Trilogy by Laura Anderson
  • Sandra Vasoli's Je Anne Boleyn novels
  • Her Highness The Traitor by Susan Higginbotham
  • Phoenix Rising by Hunter S Jones
  • The Merry Wives of Henry VIII by Ann Nonny
  • My Lady of Cleves by Margaret Campbell Barnes
  • The Sutton Place trilogy (Sutton Place/To Sleep No More/The Silver Swan) by Dinah Lampitt
  • The King's Deception by Steve Berry
  • Six Tudor Queens: Katherine of Aragon, The True Queen by Alison Weir
  • Philippa Wiat's novels
  • The Raven's Widow: A Novel of Jane Boleyn by Adrienne Dillard
  • Crown in Candelight by Rosemary Hawley Jarman
  • Elizabeth Chadwick's novels of William Marshall
  • Sharon Kay Penman's novels, although they are set earlier than the Tudor period.

There are 3 comments Go To Comment

  1. M

    What a wonderful list!

  2. L

    I would recommend, for the fictional list, the book series by G. Lawrence, about Jane Seymour, Jane Boleyn and Elizabeth I. I haven’t read her book serie about Anne Boleyn yet, but if they are anything like her other work, they ought to be good.

    1. L

      And also the serie about Margaret Beaufort, by Judith Arnopp.

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Members’ book recommendations