Review: The Wild Queen

The Wild Queen
by Carolyn Meyer
Series: Young Royals #7
Pages: 432
Format: ARC
Release Date: June 19, 2012

Goodreads / Amazon

Mary Stuart was just five years old when she was sent to France to be raised alongside her future husband. But when the frail young king dies, eighteen-year-old Mary is stripped of her title as Queen of France and set adrift in the harsh world, alone. Determined to reign over what is rightfully hers, Mary returns to Scotland. Hopingthat a husband will help her secure the coveted English throne, she marries again, but the love and security she longs for elude her. Instead, the fiery young queen finds herself embroiled in a murder scandal that could cost her the crown. And her attempts to bargain with her formidable “sister queen,” Elizabeth I of England, could cost her her very life.

*A copy was provided by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for review purposes*

It’s been a long time since I’ve read any truly historical fiction, and I’ve never reviewed a book from this genre, so I’m kind of excited this was the book that re-introduced me to the genre.  And what made it even cooler was that it was set in Scotland, and that’s where I used to live.

Okay, so I’ll rant about how I used to live in Scotland after the review but now I’m just going to write my thoughts.  While this book did start really slow and boring, it did eventually pick up and really started to get interesting.  As always, Carolyn Meyer’s writing was flawless, and I loved how the events flowed together perfectly.  Which isn’t really surprising because Queen Mary actually lived and the events that Meyer put in the book actually happened, so…yeah, dumb moment :P
Meyer obviously did some very thorough research because she was spot-on with her retellings.  This book was very informant and I think Meyer really developed the characters well.

I can’t really talk about character building in this review because the characters actually lived, so I guess I can just give my opinion.
I liked that Meyer gave an un-biased story of Mary, Queen of Scots and let the readers make their own decisions, whether they liked her or not.  I do like her, I just think that at times she was a complete idiot.  She was a strong woman, just, occasionally, not very smart.
Really the only two other characters of any consequence are Lord Darnley and Lord Bothwell.  Hate, despise, loath them.  Darnley is a two year old in a man’s body, a brat, and really, really mean.  Lord Bothwell was extremely evil and mean, and I can’t believe Mary didn’t see right through him.

Even though this is the seventh book in a series, you don’t have to read the first six books to read this one.  It’s about a ton of different female royals, and they have nothing to do with each other other than the fact that they are part of the Young Royals series, so, if you get the chance, I highly recommend picking up this book.

And one more thing before I sign off: the cover.  Love, love, love, love, LOVE this cover.  I could literally stare at it all day.  The girl is gorgeous and I love her hair and the necklace and the dress and the castle…perfect cover.

3 1/2 pink flowers

Okay, so this isn’t a part of the review so don’t feel like you have to read it, but I mentioned earlier that I lived in Scotland.  I actually went on a tour of Europe pretty much, with my parents and brothers (I was 8 at the time).  I went to England, Germany, Austria, and Scotland, to name a few.  I lived in Scotland for ten months.  In the book Meyer actually mentions a little town called Haddington.  That’s where I lived!  I’ve been to Edinburgh, Edinburgh Castle, Loch Leven Castle, and a ton of other castles that I can’t remember.  I got so excited when I saw these in the book because it’s really cool to read about where you’ve been! :P


  1. Emily, thank you for the perceptive comments you've made about my book. There are really a lot of loathsome characters in Mary's story; besides the two husbands, I'm not too crazy about the two Guise uncles. And Catherine de' Medici is the mother-in-law from hell (read about her sad life in DUCHESSINA). Diane de Poitiers deserves a book of her own, don't you think?
    --Carolyn Meyer


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