He was really a big teddy bear.

A recently released letter from Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn reveals the softer side of the king.

Perhaps he was simply a misunderstood monarch looking for love and affection in all the wrong places. Or maybe he had bad taste in women, advisers, dukes and assorted other hangers-on. More than likely he was just your run of the mill, spoiled monarch. Whatever it was that made him tick, you can't deny he is still a fascinating character who gave rise to an interesting and tumultuous era, not to mention a fun TV show starring the luscious Jonathan Rhys-Meyers. It's good to be the king! However, as much as I love to read about the Tudors, I'm glad I didn't live back then.

I recently read Alison Weir's The Children of Henry VIII. It's a great book but what I found

 most fascinating was the portrait of Lady Jane Grey. This poor young girl, more than anyone else, makes me very glad I did not live in Tudor times. Here was an intelligent, well-educated young woman who wanted nothing more than to live a simple life. However, her parents threw her under the cart not once but twice in their bid to gain power and the throne of England. By the time Jane's execution day arrived, she was eager to move onto a better world.

With parents like Jane's, who needs enemies?

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