My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton and Jodi Meadows
You’re pretty sure you know how the whole Tudor succession thing went down, right? Henry VIII, he of the many wives, died and his only (legitimate) son, Edward VI, inherited the throne. After a sickly childhood, poor Edward kicked the bucket at the age of 15, but not before revising the line of succession so his cousin, Lady Jane Grey, would inherit the throne, instead of his Catholic half sister (and, let’s face it, a real stick-in-the-mud) Mary. Jane sat the throne for a grand total of nine days before losing her head to Mary, who, despite being a bit of a bore, had an army and really had a thirst for blood.
But did you know about the part where Henry VIII could shift into a lion (it was a real problem, actually, what with his temper and the whole eating of messengers)? No? Where do you think the Lion King came from? Or the part where book-loving Lady Jane was married to Gifford Dudley in a bit of a rush when Edward discovered he was dying (well, maybe you knew that part) – but that her new husband didn’t quite have a good grip on his own shapeshifting, erm, abilities, and spent his days from sunrise to sunset as a horse? Nope, I didn’t think so.
Well, then, fellow history buffs, read on for the true story of what really went down when Edward, Jane, Gifford, Mary, and Elizabeth all fight it out for the throne of England, try to keep their heads (and tails), fall in love (well, some of them), and bring peace and prosperity to the land (except for Mary, who, honestly, was kind of a problem). This is a madcap, irreverent, laugh-out loud funny romp through the not-usually funny mess of a Tudor family. You probably didn’t know you were looking for a mash-up of Monty Python, Shakespeare’s comedies, and The Tudors (now with more shapeshifting!), but here it is anyway! And speaking of Shakespeare, do you want to know, once and for all, who he really was? Answers inside…