{Review} MY LADY JANE by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows

Love fairy tales and mythology?
Fans of mermaids, dragons, unicorns, and other mythical creatures?
Enjoy when a beloved classic tale is retold?
A Twist in the Tail Thursdays features all this and more!
O P E N I N G   L I N E:

  YOU MAY THINK YOU KNOW the story. It goes like this: once upon a time, there was a sixteen-year-old girl named Jane Grey, who was forced to marry a complete stranger (Lord Guildford or Gilford or Gifford-something-or-other), and shortly thereafter found herself ruler of a country. She was queen for nine days. Then she quite literally lost her head.
  Yes, it's a tragedy, if you consider the disengagement of one's head from one's body tragic. (We are merely narrators, and would hate to make assumptions as to what the reader would find tragic.)
  We have a different tale to tell.
  Pay attention. We've tweaked minor details. We've completely rearranged major details. Some names have been changed to protect the innocent (or not-so-innocent, or simply because we thought a name was terrible and we liked another name better). And we've added a touch of magic to keep things interesting. So really anything could happen.
  This is how we think Jane's story should have gone.

(pg. 1, US hardcover edition)

MY LADY JANE is currently ON SALE as an e-book for only $1.99!!! It's been on sale for a couple of weeks, so I don't know how much longer the sale will last. GRAB IT NOW, and see why it hit the New York Times Best Sellers List this week and got picked up to be a TV movie!!!

Are you something fun and light-hearted to take your cares away and help you usher in the New Year with a smile on your face? Something that reminds you of The Princess Bride or Monty Python or Galavant? Look no further than MY LADY JANE, which turns history upside down, adds magic to our world, and creates something brand new.

Because, seriously, don't you want to know the truth about Lady Jane Grey, the Nine Day Queen who was crowned after King Henry VI's death, then beheaded by his sister Mary upon her ascension to the throne? Because...maybe things aren't as we think. Maybe they ended differently, secretly. Maybe there is a secret race among us of people who can shapeshift into various animals, whose very presence can destroy them--and so they hide themselves from us.

They are called Eðians, and they have no control over what animal they become--or even if they can become one. They are prosecuted by Verities, who have no shape-shifting abilities and feel that to have such power is an abomination. King Henry VI is young, but sick, and while he isn't an Eðian, he supports them, unlike his sister Mary. If he dies and she takes the throne, the war will become bloody and all will be lost. Instead, he concocts a plan to marry off his beloved cousin Jane and secretly make her his successor. The only problem? Jane's husband is, quite literally, a horse! Unlike most Eðians, Lord Gifford Dudley isn't able to control the shift, and spends his entire day as a horse. He is only human in the evenings. His family has gone to great lengths to protect this secret, but his ability is also what makes Henry choose him as his cousin's husband. With a war between the Verities and Eðians on the horizon, have the right decisions been made, or will all be lost?

You definitely have to be in the right reading mood when picking up MY LADY JANE. If you're not in the mood for something light and humorous, you'll have trouble picking this one up! It has romance and intrigue, and page-turning action, but so much more, too. Despite its length, it's hard to put down, and I read the book in a day. I just had to know what happened and see the "truth" that was being hidden from the world! I was so invested in the characters, I wanted to know their final reckoning. The characters grew and evolved so much throughout the novel, and it was a pleasure to be on this journey with them...though it's all a little too spoiley to talk about!

The novel was co-written by three authors I've read before, Cynthia Hand (Unearthly trilogy), Brodi Ashton (Everneath trilogy), and Jodi Meadows (Incarnate trilogy, Orphan Queen duology). When I heard that the three were writing together, I was immediately intrigued. I'd also seen all three together on tour and knew they had great chemistry! Having so many hands in the pot may not sound like it would work, but it does: Each author takes on the viewpoint of a major character, from King Henry Vi to Lady Jane Grey to Lord Gifford Dudley. We get to know the ins and outs of all three characters, and by diving into their heads this way, get to care for all three. These are flesh and blood characters, not shapeless caricatures. The format works so well, and it's exciting that the trio will work together again to produce at least two more novels: MY PLAIN JANE in 2018 about Jane Eyre and Charlotte Brontë, and MY CALAMITY JANE in 2020, about CALAMITY JANE. So if you love history mashed up with magic and humor in such a way, that it becomes brand-new, keep an eye on this trio's future releases!

Content Ratings: highlight between ( ) for details

Romance: PG13 ( Kissing. Innuendo about a "very special hug" that will bypass younger readers.  Nothing is graphic or described...or even HAPPENS except as an aside at the very end.  )
Language: -- 
Violence: G ( There is talk of decapitation, but nothing is visually shown. )
Other:  PG ( There is talk about rakes and what may be done in one's free time, but it's all innuendo and nothing happens! )
C O V E R   D E S I G N:

Back in June, I was lucky enough to be on the blog tour to help celebrate MY LADY JANE.

I did a cover design analysis blog, which I'll just drop here:

YouTube Link

Also, do you want a close-up of that horse emblem underneath the jacket!?
Because it's pretty awesome!

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows
Release Date: June 07, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Received: Purchased

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. 

(Get a taste of this novel by reading the prologue!)