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Mitch Rapp


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So I was plodding through this dreadful book called The Other Queen, not about anyone here, but Mary, Queen of Scots as she is imprisoned by her bitch sister, the established queen. I know a lot about Mary since I am a Scotland buff, but the book sucked.

 

So it was with great relief that I picked up the new Vince Flynn novel about Mitch Rapp and his testosterone-laced buddies saving the country from terrorists and the bureaucrats at the CIA. It's called Extreme Measures, and it's a load of fun to read, the pages turning with new twists.

 

Rapp is a bit of a queen in his own right since he thinks he has the best answers for everything, but his story is told a lot better than Mary's. She's on the best seller list now, Flynn should be by next week.

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I do not believe Mary Queen of Scots had a sister Queen. She was cousin to Queen Elizabeth I and her half sister, Queen Mary "Bloody Mary". The half-sisters were both sired by Henry VIII uncle to Queen Mary via Mary's father. I believe at one time or another Elizabeth held Mary of Scotland prisoner, and eventually executed Mary Queen of Scots, her cousin. Queen Mary, "Bloody Mary" also held Elizabeth prisoner at one point and while execution was an alternative, Elizabeth avoided that fate and ruled for decades finally succumbing and being followed to the throne by Mary Queen of Scots' son James the First of England aka James the Sixth of Scotland. Mary of Scotland also spent much time in France, some of it in less than favorable conditions thanks to her relatives in the French royal family.

Royalty can be a bitch.

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Actually my favorite take on Mary Queen of Scots is the Donizetti opera Maria Stuarda which was in based on the Schiller play Maria Stuart. It includes the infamous cat fight between the two Queens where Mary completely looses it and proclaims Liz a vile bastard thus sealing her fate.

 

Kind of like what can happen in this forum from time to time…

 

While the Schiller concoction is great theatrics it is not historically accurate as the two cousins (aka "sister queens") actually never met in real life. Still, when the music is added and the soprano caps the scene with high D it all just seems so right and one could care less about historical accuracy.

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Mary, Queen of Scots

 

To clarify:

 

Mary was the only legitimate daughter of James V, King of Scots, who was Henry VIII of England's nephew (via Margaret Tudor, Henry's older sister, who was James V's mother). James V had invaded England and died soon after Mary was born and the infant Queen of Scots was sent to France while her French mother, Mary of Guise held the Regency in Scotland. While at France, Mary was married to the French Dauphin who later became Francis II of France.

 

When Mary of England (aka 'Bloody Mary', daughter of Henry VIII) died, the French proclaimed Mary of Scots as rightful Queen of England as the next legitimate Tudor heir, since Henry VIII's marriage to Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I's mother, was not recognized by Catholics and Elizabeth was regarded as a bastard and unable to inherit. Although the French later recognized Elizabeth I as Queen of England, Mary never formally renounced her claim, which Elizabeth did not forget.

 

When Francis II died (he and Mary had no children), Mary was returned to rule over Scotland. Her second marriage produced one son, James, but after Mary entered into a 3rd marriage to the man who was widely believed to have murdered her second husband, Mary was deposed in favour of her infant son, who became James VI of Scots. Eventually, Mary was able to escape captivity in Scotland and fled to England, hoping Elizabeth would aid her, or at least allow her safe passage to France. Instead, mindful of Mary's claim to the English throne, Elizabeth had Mary confined. Mary would remain a state prisoner of Elizabeth for the rest of her life, though the two queens are not believed to have ever met face-to-face.

 

While imprisoned, Mary was involved/implicated in at least 2 plots to overthrow and kill Elizabeth (though Mary claimed ignorance of the latter). In 1587, with the Spanish Armada looming and the Pope having absolved all Catholics from owing allegiance to Elizabeth, the pressure to have Mary executed overrode Elizabeth's proclaimed reluctance to execute a fellow monarch and Mary was beheaded after being found guilty of treason.

 

Mary's son, James VI of Scotland, would be nominated by Elizabeth as her heir when she was dying and became James I of England in 1603. All subsequent monarchs of England/Scotland/Great Britain are direct descendents of James, and his mother, Mary.

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Well, I just finished the Rapp book. In essence, the author makes the point that so many want to protect the rights of terrorists, or at least until they a present a clear and present danger.

 

It's been my opinion for years that with police, people want the job done. They don't want to know the dirty details, they just want the job done. But when the job goes awry, then every one gets up in arms that the cops misbehaved. The closer a person or his loved one is to danger, the more daring they want the cops to be.

 

I think the same applies to people in the lead in the battle against terrorists. The trouble with the Bush administration is that they were supposed to lock the really bad guys up at Guantanamo, but they did such a bad job deciding who the bad guys were that they had too broad a sweep of who they picked up. Then their own military prosecutors balked at doing the job they wanted to them to do.

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RE: Mary, Queen of Scots

 

This is one of my favorite Mary Queen of Scots story (whether it’s actually true or not).

 

It is said that, among other things, Mary was known for her hair. When she was to be executed, she arrived at the platform with her hair pulled up, as was tradition in order to give the executioner clear shot of the neck. The axe came down and Mary’s head tumbled into the basket. The executioner grabbed the head at the hair to present it to the audience and with customary flourish held aloft . . .

 

. . . a wig.

 

Mary had shaved her head the night before, to spoil the moment of triumph in one last statement of power.

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I remember the day my uncle turned me on to my first Vince Flynn novel.

Of course it was the newest one at the time and when it was over I was kind of disappointed to leave the character. Imagine my delight when I found out that the book I read was the latest in a series of books with these characters. I went back to the beginning and started the series from scratch.

 

Last week a good friend gave me the latest book for my birthday. I always start his books with a mixture of excitement and dread. Excitement that I get to read another of his novels and dread that I am about to finish his most recent novel. The guy doesn't write fast enough.

 

As for the Queen stuff you were talking about, haven't a clue about that s_ _t.

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