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The House of Dudley


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About the Author

Joanne Paul is Senior Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of Sussex. A BBC/AHRC New Generation Thinker, her research focuses on the intellectual and cultural history of the Renaissance and Early Modern periods. She has written for the Cambridge University Press 'Ideas in Context' series, and has been widely praised for her work on Thomas More, William Shakespeare, Machiavelli and Thomas Hobbes. The House of Dudley is her acclaimed first book.


A tour-de-force of Tudor history, as seen through the eyes of a family with a front-row view of almost every major political event in sixteenth-century England. Remarkable
*Dan Jones, Sunday Times bestselling author of Powers and Thrones*

Exciting and immersive. An immensely entertaining history, capturing in full Tudor brilliance the cut-throat glamour of the English throne and the most audacious family to play its game
*Sunday Times*

House of Dudley is a full-blooded affair, as good on the horrors of war as it is on the soft power of the Dudley women, and written in a lively, episodic style that presents each Dudley as a foil to the monarch they served
*Jessie Childs*

Breathes new life into an old and familiar Tudor story. [She] negotiates the labyrinth of Tudor politics with skill, producing a book much more comprehensible and illuminating than others I've read . . . It's delightful, a joy to read

I am hugely impressed by The House of Dudley and by the depths of research.
This is a pacy narrative, vividly written, that makes you want to read on and on.
Joanne Paul is a major new talent in the field and I eagerly await her next book
*Alison Weir*

This is riveting stuff: death, desire, power and scandal. Paul has made the most of it, producing a well written and historically grounded page-turner . . . Game of Thrones looks tame compared with the real-life machinations of the Dudleys and the Tudors

A twist on the Tudors . . . Enormously entertaining - a sheer joy to read
*The Times, '25 BEST HISTORY BOOKS OF 2022'*

A hugely entertaining history of three generations of the Dudley family, who dominated the Tudor court
*The Times*

A thrilling and deeply researched study of power and conspiracy: the rise and fall of the other Tudor dynasty. The House of Dudley illuminates the fascinating men and women who almost became kings and queens in their own right
*Simon Sebag-Montefiore*

Vivid, innovative and authoritative. I could not recommend The House of Dudley more highly. It's a real lesson in how to revitalise the writing of Tudor history
*Sarah Gristwood*

Joanne Paul's account of this family is rich and compelling. She manages to hit that sweet spot where scholarly history overlaps with dramatic storytelling; she conjures up the look and feel of Tudor life, down to the clothes, the medicines and the furniture, while also being a skilful filler-in of political background . . . Whether or not you have ever succumbed to Mantelmania, you will find yourself drawn in, fascinated, and richly informed

An enthralling read told by Paul with great verve and an eye for the telling detail . . . The family's complex history is concisely and compellingly related
*Literary Review*

Visceral and illuminating. The extraordinary House of Dudley is the Tudor Game of Thrones. Paul has produced a painstakingly detailed first book with spirit and verve
*The Wall Street Journal*

Captivating and thought-provoking . . . Sheds immense light onto this often-overlooked family
*Royal Studies Journal*

The crowning jewel in its genre . . . I can't recommend this book enough. Unputdownable
*Lindsey Fitzharris*

When reading Joanne Paul's lively history of the house of Dudley, it is impossible not to be reminded of Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall trilogy . . . Paul uses the experiences of the Dudleys to light up odd corners and backroom spaces of Tudor palace life
*Mail on Sunday*

Joanne Paul chronicles the meteoric rise and deadly fall of the Dudleys
*BBC History Magazine*

Joanne Paul reveals how the might of the Tudor dynasty was built on the blood and sweat of three generations of another family - the Dudleys
*BBC History Magazine*

Hugely entertaining
*The Times, Best Books of Summer 2022*

*History Today*

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