Article first published as Book Review: Mary Tudor “Bloody Mary” by Gretchen Maurer and Peter Malone (illustrator) on Blogcritics.
Mary Tudor “Bloody Mary”
By: Gretchen Maurer
Illustrated by: Peter Malone
This is a children’s picture book in the Thinking Girl’s Treasury of Dastardly Dames. In many ways this is a historical account of the trials and tribulations of religion in England. It was once mostly Protestant. But having watched the devastating division between Protestants and Catholics first hand, and how it can really harm a person’s reputation and life, Mary decided to side with the Catholics. Mary felt tested by the Protestants in her teen years and early adulthood.
One of Mary’s genuine wish and prayer was that she would ultimately become Queen of England. Ironically, her wish did come true. Everyone thought she was compassionate, brave, and truthful. She paved the way for future queens. She rebuilt Catholic universities and churches. She did so much good. But did she deserve the name of “Bloody Mary”? I will have to leave it to reader to decide for him/herself.
The illustrations are vivid and colourful. They illustrate what people wore, ate, and how they spent their time during the fifteenth century in England. The story has educational value and will be very useful to school kids ages 9-13. It is a wonderful read and an evocative story that most kids will be able to sink their teeth into. They will want to keep reading and re-reading the book over and over.
Reviewed by: Irene S. Roth