the guardian Fri 19 June 2009
Can it truly be 40 years since this best-selling page-turner of a biography, Fraser's first and still her best, was published? It must be, Orion is calling it the 40th-anniversary edition; pity it's abridged. Yes, I know 32 hours is long, but you won't find a more thoroughly researched or better-written book about history's most romantic royal, the beautiful, intelligent, accomplished, headstrong, fun-loving, doomed Mary Stuart. Minutes before her execution she rebuked the protestant Dean of Peterborough for praying for her soul. "Mr Dean, I am settled in the ancient Catholic Roman religion, and mind to spend my blood in the defence of it."