Release Date: June 7, 2016
Publisher: Harper Teen
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Genre: Yound Adult | Historical | Fantasy
The comical, fantastical, romantical, (not) entirely true story of Lady Jane Grey. In My Lady Jane, coauthors Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows have created a one-of-a-kind fantasy in the tradition of The Princess Bride, featuring a reluctant king, an even more reluctant queen, a noble steed, and only a passing resemblance to actual history—because sometimes history needs a little help.
At sixteen, Lady Jane Grey is about to be married off to a stranger and caught up in a conspiracy to rob her cousin, King Edward, of his throne. But those trifling problems aren’t for Jane to worry about. Jane gets to be Queen of England.
Think Robin Hood Men in Tights, or Princess Bride (haven't read this so I can't compare) and you'll have a clue as to how funny and silly MY LADY JANE is by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows. The book is based in part by the real Jane Grey, the 9-day Queen of England who preceded Bloody Mary until she got beheaded for treason. While MY LADY JANE isn't as dark, it is rife with political intrigue and lots of farces and satires poking fun at the religious conflicts that steered England's kingdom during this time. Presumably the Catholics are Verity group while the Edians, a hereditary ability to shape shift into a random animal, are the Protestants.
MY LADY JANE is written in 3 POV's, Jane Grey, King Edward, and Gifford, Jane's Edian husband.
Jodi Meadows as Lady Jane Grey: I love Jane, difficult not to as she's portrayed as an avid bookworm. Jane is fond of textbooks ranging from history, DIY, to self-help titles, all with rather long and silly titles (which reminds me of those Harry Potter textbooks). Jane is outspoken, non-political, very loyal, and quite cunning for a timid girl. I also love her quips and snarky comebacks, a know-it-all but in the most endearing way.
Cynthia Hand as King Edward: CHand, IMHO, was great in capturing the voice of a dying young king. Edward is every bit a teenage boy, fantasizing about his first kiss and other trivial pursuits and is not entirely involved in running his country. He leaves it to his advisors and Privy Council. Edward can also be a brat, but all this business about Jane ascending the throne and Mary taking it back gave Edward a much needed wake-up call. The trio did this cool twist somewhere in the middle that had Edward fending for himself with the help of a foxy Scottish girl.
Brodi Ashton as Gifford: An Edian who turns into a rather dazzling stallion during the day, and a rogue tavern poet at night. He really is Jane's perfect match as both are more content in academic pursuits than getting involved in some political intrigue. Gifford is such an adorable character, very simple yet charming.
Jane: [Edward] My Husband is a horse.
Edward: Sorry I made you marry a horse.
MY LADY JANE overall is such a funny and entertaining story. The authors shattered the fourth wall and took a LOT of creative license in retelling Jane Grey's story, giving it a positive and hopeful ending versus the dark and cruel death the real Jane Grey suffered all those centuries ago. Before you start this, relax and put yourself in a mindset of someone about to watch a stand-up comedy. I enjoyed taking off my "critiquing" cap and allowed Hand, Ashton, and Meadows to tickle me into giggle-snorting fits as Jane, Edward, and Gifford try to survive and make sense of their very odd situation.