Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 12 to 15
- Grade: 7 to 10
In this historical novel, Kate Allen, a fifteen-year-old girl, travels back in time to the Tudor court of Henry VII. While there, she is mistaken for an absent Katherine of Aragon, and subsequently takes the place of the young woman positioned to become the first wife of the future king Henry VIII. In her present time, Kate has been dealing with the sudden death of her father, and a move to London, to live with her elder sister. Kate quietly rebels against all these unwonted changes that have come in her young life, so at first her journey into the past is a welcome relief. She blossoms with the attention of a young and gallant Prince Henry. But as she pieces together her knowledge of history - especially her awareness of the man and monarch whom Prince Henry will become - Kate knows this relationship will be unhealthy for her. At the same time, friendship blossoms with William Fitzroy, one of Henry's companions.
Through the course of the story, Kate recognizes her own ability to adapt, and develops skills she will later need in order to fit into her new living circumstances once back in London. She also realizes that she has a responsibility to her family over and above her expectations of them. Most of all, Kate learns to stop running from the things she fears, and embrace life, a decision that will make a difference to her in times to come.
About the author
Beverley Brenna is known for her warm, funny family stories that capture the essence of childhood and champion diversity. Her awards include an international Dolly Gray Award, a Printz Honor Book Award, and a shortlisting for the 2013 Governor General’s Award. Wild Orchid, the title book in a trilogy about a young woman on the Autism Spectrum, is currently listed on CBC’s “100 Young Adult Books That Make You Proud To Be Canadian”. Bev is a professor in Curriculum Studies at the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan, where she teaches English Language Arts subject matter to preservice and inservice teachers. Much of Bev’s writing seeks to fill in gaps in the field of available books, and she considers voices rarely heard in children’s literature. Bev’s many years as a classroom and special education teacher offer her a clear picture of school landscapes, children, and childhood, and the years she spent at home co-parenting three sons continue to inspire new characters and themes.