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The Strangled Queen (Les Rois Maudits #2)

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  2,955 ratings  ·  165 reviews
The King is dead. Long live the King.

With King Philip IV dead, and the Kingdom left in disarray, as the fatal curse of the Templars plagues the royal house of France.

Imprisoned in Chateau Gaillard, Marguerite of Burgundy has fallen into disgrace. Her infidelity has left her estranged husband, Louis X King of France, with neither heir nor wife.

The web of scandal, murder and
Published June 27th 1985 by Century (first published 1955)
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Community Reviews

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This is the second book in Maurice Druon's Accursed Kings series (Les Rois Maudits in French). There are seven novels in the series, all published between 1955 and 1977, telling the story of the monarchs of medieval France. The front covers of these new HarperCollins editions tell us that The Accursed Kings inspired George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones, but be aware that this is not a fantasy series!

In the first book, The Iron King, we saw how Philip IV the Fair of France brought about the des
With the glowing recommendation of GRR Martin, the Accursed Kings series is enjoying a resurgence in popularity. I loved the first book, The Iron King, and only waited this long to read the second installment due to my aversion to Kindle books that cost more than a couple of dollars.

The Strangled Queen begins where the Iron King ends, with the death of Phillip the Fair of France. His inept son becomes Louis X, and the fighting ensues over who will have the real power in France. Will it be the y
Athena Ninlil
"The Original Game of Thrones. Believe me the Starks and the Lannisters have nothing on the Capet and Plantagenets" -GRRM. From the second book of the Accursed Kinds recently re-issued with a word by George R.R. Martin about this historical fiction saga. I recently came across it and I was not disappointed despite my initial wariness of it. When it comes with most historical fiction I am wary as many liberties are taken. Characters here are multi-fascetic rather than two dimensional or one dimen ...more
'The Accursed Kings' refers to the last few Capetian monarchs, Philip IV and his sons, who ruled France from 1314 to 1328. Philip IV was the one who owed a whole lot of money to the Templars and then suddenly discovered they were all Satanists, gosh, how lucky for him. The legend is that the Grand Master Jacques de Molay cursed Philip and all his descendants before he was burned at the stake, so Philip and his sons all promptly died, one two three four. Personally, I would blame that on the medi ...more
This book is written in the 1950s, and I have been quite impressed with it's easy and beautiful language. It is not at all heavy which older novels sometimes tend to be, but there is one thing that bothers me a little. I feel like Druon couldn't decide what genre of novel he wanted to write. Sometimes it feels like a book on history and other times it takes the form of a historical novel. He tends to give things away in the middle of the text, which would be fine for a book on history, but as a ...more
THE KING IS DEAD! LONG LIVE THE KING! With the death of King Philip, Louis X assumes the Throne and all the issues left by his father. With the three imprisoned harlots awaiting a decision on their future, Louis must decide how to handle them; one being his adulterous wife Marguerite. A tainted reign is not something Louis wishes to have enter the history books, and so he seeks to annul his marriage and find a new queen. Agreements are made and a potential bride is found, Clemence of Hungary, a ...more
The second in his Accursed Kings series, The Strangled Queen takes up the story of Louis X of France and his adulteress wife, Marguerite of Burgundy. Although the title pretty much leaves little to the imagination as to what happens to poor Marguerite, the majority of the book focuses on the political struggle between the king, his nobles, his brothers and his uncles (especially Charles of Valois).

Druon is a really good writer but he has a nasty habit of yanking you of the story for some philos
I bought this after devouring the Iron King a day before release and finished it on the same day. It picks up following the death of Philip IV and explores the relationships between three key characters - the new king, Louis X, Marigny and Charles de Valois - and a large cast of other players shaping the conflict. It's in this novel that Martin's comment in the Forward to the books that 'The Accursed Kings is the real Game of Thrones' really becomes apparent. Duron is master at quickly creating ...more
The second installment of The Accursed Kings series. This one centres around Louis X, the son of Philip the Fair, whose story was told in The Iron King. Let me tell you; Louis isn't a patch on his father. He's weak and pathetic and Maurice Druon did an excellent job of making him wholly unlikeable. His wife, Marguerite has been locked up for adultery since the reign of Philip the Fair and Louis is desperate for a divorce so that he can marry again. (view spoiler) ...more
Even if it's the second book of a series of six books, this book can be considered as a stand-alone book.

The sequel of "Le Roi de Fer" tells the story of the successor of Philippe IV - Louis X. The plot starts with the imprisonment of Marguerite de Valois, followed by the his game of intrigue against the famous financier Marigny and the remaining feudal barons of the Order of the Templars.

I read a Portuguese version of this book and the translation was of bad quality.

As a Bookcrossing book, it w
Sumeetha Manikandan
The plot gets thicker... Will post the review soon. Once you are hooked to these books you simply can't get enough of them.
Patrick St-Denis
Thanks to George R. R. Martin, I'm not the only reader who recently discovered the excellent The Accursed Kings by French author Maurice Druon. Having enjoyed The Iron King, I couldn't wait to read the second installment. And with volumes three and four on their way, this is not the last time you'll read about this series on the Hotlist! The Strangled Queen begins right where The Iron King ended and it's nearly as good as its predecessor.

Here's the blurb:

The King is dead. Long live the King.

Rodrigo Campos
Derivado de que es un poco menos extenso que el primer libro y que ya conocía a los personajes, no me pareció difícil de leer.

En fin, este libro empieza justamente donde el primero ha terminado, el rey ha muerto, y su primogénito heredará el poder, el príncipe conocido como "Luis el Obstinado", quién aparentemente no tiene la fuerza y el carácter para gobernar, además, la esposa y ahora casi reina, ha sido acusada (y no sólo acusada, sino que es culpable) de adulterio, por lo que se encuentra en
Mieczyslaw Kasprzyk
The Iron King is dead but his successor, Louis X, is a weak and insecure man. Thus the centre cannot hold as powerful men conspire to gain, or maintain, power. The chief pawn in this game is the Royal Succession - the king must have a new wife who can breed a dynasty... but there's a problem. The king has a wife, Margaret, imprisoned for adultery (a source of burning shame for the cuckold Louis) and getting rid of her is not going to be easy.
"The Strangled Queen" (now THERE'S a spoiler for you!)
I'm now officially hooked on this series. I just loves me some intrigue, and this delivered in spades.

Before I gush about how much I enjoyed this book, I'll briefly summarize the plot. Philip the Fair, the Iron King, is dead--supposedly from the Templar's curse that's been systematically killing off members of the royal court. Philip's oldest son, Louis, ascends the throne as Louis X but it's made clear early on that Louis isn't the most competent ruler. What's more, there's the issue of his ad
Muy buena segunda parte de los Reyes Malditos. Se trata del principio del reinado de Luis X "El Obstinado" que hereda dos grandes problemas del reinado de Felipe el Hermoso: 1) una reina adúltera recluida en una prisión, lo cual presiona Luis X a buscar la anulación a través de un papa que no ha sido elegido todavía; y 2) dos grandes poderes que desean influenciar en su reino: Enguerrado de Marigny, reformador de leyes a favor en detrimento de los nobles y financieros, y Carlos de Valois, su tío ...more
So many people have summarized the plot that I won't do it. But I'd like to share that I enjoyed this second novel in the series even better than The Iron King. Having skimmed through the reviews for the The Iron King on the site, I saw that a lot of people were comparing it to G. Martin's famous fantasy series. If G. Martin is what you expect, you might be disappointed with Druon's novels. Not only their genres, but their writing styles are rather different. (You won't find profanity in Druon.) ...more
Heather Perkins
Not as good as the first book, and all I could think as I was reading this was 'please dear god someone poison him on his wedding day.' And Phillippe doesn't show up but hardly, but he needs to be King FAST, and for longer than I know he is. Wow.
This is why we got rid of dynastic rule, Louis is so easily manipulated by everyone around him to bring out the crappyness of his natural being that while the country is already experiencing tumult, he gets rid of the one smart, loyal to the government
I"m going to review this and the Iron King together, as the Iron King felt like a prequel to the rest of the series.

The detailed political intrigue is just fantastic and really ropes you in. The characters are wonderfully painted and all very unique, full of life and intelligence (or lack thereof). I also loved Druon's occasional commentary statements on the nature of power, wealth, religion and status.

What I found most interesting about the series was the direct parallels you can draw from the
After the events of The Iron King, The Strangled Queen picks up immediately after King Phillip’s death, with his weakling son, Louis X, coming to the throne. As Louis struggles to assert himself and navigate the tangled strands of family and politics that surround him, the chief worry of the court is his wife – Marguerite of Bourgogne, the adulteress locked in prison and waiting to know her fate. As the church attempts to choose a new Pope and the country falls into famine, the complex rivalries ...more
Margaret Adams
The Strangled Queen

This is the second book in The Accursed Kings series.

Marguerite of Burgundy, Queen of Navarre, is the queen around whom the book is built.

How and why she comes to be strangled is what the book is about. The twists and turns and the power struggles in France all figure in the story. A new king, Louis X, Marguerite’s husband, is not the man his father, Philip IV, was. Louis is in difficulties from the start of his reign.

It is with Marguerite of Burgundy that the series of even
Dec 25, 2007 Silversand2021 rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone looking for historical fiction/drama
Extremely well-written, with developed characters and storyline. Druon also makes quite a lot of philosophical points, including the excellent "a king's job is never done" introduction.

This is written in a style that was old was I was young. It seems factual in detail, but somehow pulls you out of the path of the action by context asides and philosophy nuance. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, but in this case with translation or pace result, it seems stilted. But that is so much better than being revisionist to today's sensibilities, that I only mention the resulting choppiness as it took a star for me.

But this is a thorough telling of Queen Marguerite, wife of Louis X a
c1955: FWFTB: Louis X, disgraced, wife, Gaillard, dynasty. Admittedly, I only wanted to read these books because of the recommendation of George R R Martin. And if newspapers are to be believed, I am not the only one. This book is the second in the series and, to be frank, I'm done. I didn't find anything particularly good in the writing other than straight forward historical 'fact' and thought up dialogue. Therefore, unable to recommend to the normal crew. "Because Marie was dying of hunger, he ...more
R.A. Raab
The Strangled Queen by Maurice Druon is the second book in The Iron King series. The new king, Louis X, must decide what to do about his cheating queen, imprisoned in a tower for the length of the book. The book is full of intrigue and political maneuvering, but my only wish is that the fate of the queen hadn’t been given away by the title. I was hoping that it was just a metaphor, but that’s the worst kind of spoiler you can have. He should have just named one of his books The Butler Did It. Bu ...more
Mar 28, 2015 Lorraine rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Middle Age history especially Western Europe .
And I thought that only England was corrupt and so violent during the Middle Ages.. Boy, was I wrong! France runs side by side with England during this era. It appears that France had the same problems with monarchs as England did. There would be a strong king followed by a weaker one and so on. The author mentions intermarriage - cousin marrying cousin and that usually meant first cousin. No wonder there were Problems - capital P is deliberate. This author wrote 7 books in this series with # 7 ...more
Andrew Tollemache
The 2nd in a 7 part series detailing intrigue in France in the lead up to the 100 Years War with England. Druon's story is highly compelling, but I doid have to go back and review the 1st book since it had been so long since I read it. For a part of European history I have almost no knowledge of it is a great read. The good thing about these Druon tales is that the pacing is great and he does not drag out each installment. I will make sure to start reading the next installment before this one's ...more
historical fiction set in France - and written in French so this is a translation.

loved it. I know little about medieval French history. This is set just before the start of the Hundred Year's War.

It was written in the 1950s and so some of the text is awkward. And he's pretty heavy-handed with the foreshadowing - but then we know what will happen if we look at history.

Found this because George RR Martin is a big fan of this series. If you like historical fiction and France, this is fantastic!
Elspeth G. Perkin
Like the cover art that entices and is absolutely striking so is The Strangled Queen by Maurice Druon. This is the second installment of The Accursed Kings series that launched over 50 years ago and still finds an eager audience today. A refined collection of works that combines meticulous research with believable dialogue and dynastic manoeuvres that transports the reader into 14th-century Europe courts centering in France then departing for England all heralding the Hundred Years War. If the i ...more
Before he died, Philip the Fair (The Iron King) felt that his daughter Isabelle was better suited to be King of France than the heir apparent, Louis X (The Hutin). The Hutin proved to be every bit the weak-willed, weak witted king that his Father thought that he would make.

Caught in the cross-hairs between his Uncle Valois and Marigny, Louis X was really no match for either. His uncle manipulated him into undoing all the laws that his Philip the Fair put in place, literally placing what may been
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Maurice Druon was born in Paris. He is the nephew of the writer Joseph Kessel, with whom he wrote the Chant des Partisans, which, with music composed by Anna Marly, was used as an anthem by the French Resistance during the Second World War.

In 1948 he received the Prix Goncourt for his novel Les grandes familles. On December 8, 1966, he was elected to the 30th seat of the Académie française, succee
More about Maurice Druon...

Other Books in the Series

Les Rois Maudits (7 books)
  • The Iron King (The Accursed Kings, #1)
  • Los venenos de la corona (Los Reyes Malditos, #3)
  • La ley de los varones (Los Reyes Malditos, #4)
  • La loba de Francia (Los Reyes Malditos, #5)
  • La flor de lis y el león (Los Reyes Malditos, #6)
  • De como un rey perdió Francia (Los Reyes Malditos, #7)
The Iron King (The Accursed Kings, #1) La ley de los varones (Los Reyes Malditos, #4) Los venenos de la corona (Los Reyes Malditos, #3) La loba de Francia (Los Reyes Malditos, #5) La flor de lis y el león (Los Reyes Malditos, #6)

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“Mediocrities can tolerate being surrounded only by flatterers who conceal their mediocrity.” 2 likes
“It is thus that imagination can in the end determine destiny, and it but needs our future actions to be given shape in speech so that we are obliged to give them the reality of accomplishment.” 1 likes
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