SYNOPSIS: A tale of romance and fantasy that imagines an alternate version of English History where Lady Jane Grey doesn’t lose her head and some people have the ability to change into animals at will.
No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t love this book. The style of narration is one that I always enjoy, but it just wasn’t clicking with me this time. I loved Peter Pan and The Princess Bride which employ the style of “narrator telling the story and interupting every so often to comment or provide clarity” and while I still did love the style, it just didn’t work well for the story being told. For some reason I just don’t like fantasy stories where the main characters are real people. Also the random modern pop culture references bothered me a little. I understand that if it was medieval pop culture references nobody would understand, but it was a little too tongue-in-cheek for my taste. The third thing that bothered me was Gifford turning out to be Shakespeare because I also don’t like when stories change who a historical figure actually was to a character they have written. Also while I did enjoy getting POVs from Edward, Jane, and Gifford this was promised to be a story about Jane Grey and it didn’t truly feel like Jane’s story. The characters also felt like fairy tale archetypes and were each given one trait to hold on to for the majority of the book. That being said, I did love the writing and I did enjoy the story being presented to me. I just wasn’t enchanted like many other people. One of my favorite things is how much Gifford and Jane love each other and neither one realized it. There would be points in the narration where one was thinking about how little the other loved them and I just wanted to scream at them because it just wasn’t true. I feel like Edward’s POV was a weak link because he had his own side story that was completely independent of Jane and the book is called My Lady Jane so everything should’ve been about Jane in my opinion. All three authors worked amazingly well together. Their parts were seamlessly blended together to where you could not tell that this book was put together but three pairs of unique hands. They collaborated well together and I would definitely read another book that the collaborated on as long as its not a fantasy version of the lives of real people. How this book unfolded was not what I was expecting and that might have a little to do with why I didn’t enjoy it as much, but it is a unique read because not many books employ this style of narration and I love how well these authors work together. Overall the writing was good, but the story did not capture my imagination the way that I wanted it to.