Beth von Staats reviews my book on her blog:
What's different about this review is that Beth comes from a historical fiction community that has Anne Boleyn as its heroine. If you are interested in Tudor dynastic history, you know that Anne Boleyn is a crucial figure. She can also be a controversial figure: either the heroine of the era or the terrible villainess of English history--as Hilary Mantel (and others have said something similar) wrote in The Guardian in 2012, "Anne Boleyn is one of the most controversial women in English history; we argue over her, we pity and admire and revile her, we reinvent her in every generation. She takes on the colour of our fantasies and is shaped by our preoccupations: witch, bitch, feminist, sexual temptress, cold opportunist." In summary: Anne Boleyn fascinates many for many reasons--and of them has been her reputation as a reformer, with evangelical (Lutheran) sympathies.
One might expect that my book, with its focus on what Catholics suffered during and after the English Reformation, could be seen as an attack on Anne Boleyn or even an attack on English Protestantism as it developed. But I think throughout Supremacy and Survival, I practiced charity toward all the historical personages, not ever attacking their persons--sometimes weighing their actions in a balance of justice and pointing out general inconsistencies--but never naming anyone a villain or villainess. My thesis about the English Reformation has been tested, based as it is on the work of great scholars like Eamon Duffy, Christopher Haigh, et al--and when I read Alister McGrath's Christianity's Dangerous Idea: The Protestant Revolution (San Francisco: Harper One, 2007), I was more assured I had it right. That's why I appreciate this review so much: it is not only fair to my thesis, but argues for readers to be open to my argument--and to some of its implications.
As Beth concludes in her review: