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Betsy and the Emperor

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  855 Ratings  ·  90 Reviews
"Think, my dear -- just think what it will be like, to be known as the girl who freed the great Napoleon Bonaparte!"Fourteen-year-old English girl Betsy Balcombe and her family have a most unusual house guest: Napoleon Bonaparte, former emperor of France and the most feared man on earth. Once lord and master to eighty-two million souls, now in 1815, Napoleon is a captive o ...more
Hardcover, 294 pages
Published September 28th 2004 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
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Harley Rae Yes, it is an amazing book so far. I'm halfway through it and it is amazing! I think you would like it!
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Brittney. Break my heart why dont ya
Nov 29, 2008 Brittney. Break my heart why dont ya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who had a strong friendship that you will never forget
This book was one of the most touching books I have ever read. Betsy and the Emperor had the strongest most loved friendship I have ever read. This story was based on real historic events. This story will keep you reading untill the end. At the end of the book you will cry. This heartwarming story is the best Historical fiction bookI have ever read.
Madame Reads
SO. MANY. FEELINGS. This is a spectacular story, one of the best historical fiction books I've ever read.

I started out with no expectations. I plucked it from the shelf at my local recycled bookstore and thought "Hey, this looks interesting," and went from there. Oh my sweet Mother Mary am I glad I did!

First of all, I love Betsy. She is a likable, headstrong heroine, but doesn't come off as your run of the mill "oh, I'm an independent, stubborn heroine that doesn't every want to fall in lo- O
Dec 11, 2015 Peggy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-historical
A somewhat far-fetched story about Betsy Balcombe's friendship with Napoleon, with a touch of The Wizard of Oz and a dash of National Velvet.
Napoleon Bonaparte, namanya tercatat di semua buku-buku sejarah dunia. Setelah ratusan tahun lamanya Perancis dipimpin oleh raja-raja, Napoleon Bonaparte merupakan pemimipin Perancis pertama yang bergelar Kaisar, ia memerintah pada tahun 1804-1814 dan 1815. Pada masa jayanya, Napoleon Bonaparte mungkin salah satu pemimpi paling besar sepanjang sejarah manusia. Melalui karismanya yang disertai kerja keras dan ambisi gilanya, ia bertekad untuk mewujudkan mimpinya untuk menguasai seluruh Eropa. Mim ...more
Feb 24, 2016 melmarian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Teens, People who want to know more about Napoleon Bonaparte
Saya menemukan buku ini di tumpukan buku diskon 10 ribuan Gramedia Fair, pertama sih tertarik karena covernya yang "remaja banget" dan jelas ada bau-bau kerajaan disitu karena ada kata "Emperor" dan setelah saya membaca sinopsis singkat dibelakangnya, saya pun makin tertarik.
Karena tidak seperti TeenLit biasanya, yang menjadi tema utama dalam buku ini adalah persahabatan antara Betsy dan Napoleon Bonaparte. Saya selalu suka novel historical yang dikemas dengan ringan.
Perlu lebih banyak TeenLit s
Jul 04, 2014 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow. Rarely do I ever read a book that makes me feel heart broken, and several other intense emotions. The author did an amazing job at making me feel all these emotions, though I feel like he should have gone into more detail on the emperor and Betsy's relationship. Spoiler alert, clearly the emperor has some feelings for the younger girl and while this may be repulsive because of the age difference and his lack of good looks, this book teaches us a lesson that looks aren't that important. You ...more
Published in l4 languages, this YA novel of mine is in development as a movie with Al Pacino attached to star as Napoleon Bonaparte. It's a New York Public Library "Book for the Teen Age" and an ABA/Book Sense Pick for Teens.

"This fascinating story plays both with and against the stereotype of Napoleon. Even readers who don't know of Bonaparte will be caught up in the interplay between girl and emperor and the surrounding drama of the world's history-- and their own."
-- Kirkus Reviews

“An engagin
Jan 11, 2011 Jo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Betsy and the Emperor is a must read book! The characters are very deep, and you will see Napoleon in a new light. So join a young tomboy, and read about her trying to save the emperor from a home that she herself hates. Read this book filled with adventure, loyalty, and friendship. You will want to read more and more. This is a wonderful book.
The Tiny Cat
Absolutely love this book! I've recently read Sandra Gulland's trilogy on Josephine, the wife of Napoleon, and was fascinated. Upon reading this, the reader gets to see the softer side of Napoleon through his friendship with Elizabeth(Betsy). This book never gets boring and the ending was heartwrenching.
Oct 21, 2011 Maryam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Relationship between Betsy and Napoleon Bonaparte when he was exiled to St Helena. Urgh I just love this!
This book is amazing. Loved it!
Dec 25, 2012 Nazta rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Saat itu Oktober 2006 ketika aku menemukan buku ini diantara novel-novel teenlit lainnya. Aku selalu suka membaca teenlit ketika itu, apalagi kalau cover dari novel itu cantik. Walaupun aku tahu tidak bijak rasanya menilai buku hanya dari tampilan covernya saja, tapi sejujurnya aku sudah terpesona dengan cover novel Betsy and the Emperor. Jadi, meski ketika itu aku tidak terlalu menyukai buku terjemahan, tangan aku tergerak untuk mengambilnya dari rak buku.

Tapi saat itu aku tidak kecewa membeli
Riadiani Marcelita
Oct 13, 2012 Riadiani Marcelita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Riadiani by: Ndari
In 1815, after being defeated by the British in Waterloo, former French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was banished to the forsaken island of St. Helena. Fallen from grace, Bonaparte soon finds refuge in the form of fourteen-year-old Betsy Balcombe. Betsy, whose family reluctantly houses Bonaparte, also finds herself intrigued by the emperor. Their unlikely friendship inspires Betsy to hatch a dangerous plan to help the emperor escape.

To be honest, when a friend of mine suggested this book to me, I
Dec 22, 2016 Keesa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book made me cry. I wish it could have had a different ending, but unfortunately, that's the problem with historical fiction....there's only so much you can make up.

Just a word of warning, there are a couple of places where you would have to explain certain words to young readers, words which you might prefer not to explain, especially in regards to Betsy's sister's conduct.
Kristen Frueh
Jun 19, 2013 Kristen Frueh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I very much enjoyed reading Betsy and the Emperor by Staton Rabin. As a general overview, this book is about a girl named Betsy Balcome and her efforts to decipher who her supposed friend, Napoleon Bonaparte, really is deep inside. The character of Betsy is based on a real girl who befriended Napoleon, but the majority of events in this book are fictional. The one most prominent theme or message throughout this book is: don't judge a person's character based on a common assumption. Or, an easie ...more
Jan 17, 2015 Keri rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This book was such a lovely piece of historical fiction for young adults. Betsy is such a headstrong, likeable character. Her friendship with Napoleon, a historical figure who today is often deplored, or the subject of many jokes, is so sweet and innocent. I never thought that there was a romance between them, but instead Napoleon cared for Betsy as a daughter-like figure, one that he could joke with and as someone who could provide him company on such an isolated island. Through his relationshi ...more
The other John
The problem with a lot of our history lessons is that you learn a lot of names, but you never get introduced to the people. I suppose that's one reason why I enjoy reading biographies. Anyway, this is a kind of biography. Technically, it's historical fiction, but a lot of it is based on source materials. The book tells the tale of a few years in the life of Betsy Balcombe. During her teens, she was living on the island of St. Helena when the deposed emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was exiled there. N ...more
I liked the premise of this book, and the author knew her history pretty well. A good bit of it was fictitious, and a good bit wasn't. I didn't really enjoy the slut shaming going on in the text. Also vaguely uncomfortable were the insinuations that Napoleon had feelings for a 14/15 year old girl. Kindaaaa creepy.

But I really didn't appreciate the author's pitiful attempts to make you feel better about the fact that the Balcombe family owned slaves. Oh, yeah sure they felt so terribly awful abou
Rina Kartika
Jul 28, 2012 Rina Kartika rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beberapa hari yg lalu baru ingat klo pernah baca buku ini..udah jaman SMA sih..dan klo sekalinya inget pasti bawaannya pengen baca lagi,,padahal bukunya udah gak ada..jadi coba ngorek2 ingatan nih..
Buku ini menceritakan (benar2) sisi lain dari Napoleon Bonaparte, dari sudut pandang seorang gadis berusia 14 tahun bernama Betsy. Cerita diambil ketika Napoleon menderita kekalahan perang dan dipenjara di pulau St.Helena, disitulah dia bertemu Betsy. Meskipun beda usia mereka cukup jauh (lupa brp) ta
Femke Swanton
I read this book when I was 12 and have been deeply fascinated with Napoleon and his exile to St. Helena ever since.

This is a very touching work of historical fiction. Based on true events documented by Lucia Elizabeth Balcombe Abell herself in Recollections of the Emperor Napoleon, during the first three years of his captivity on the island of St. Helena: including the time of his residence at her father's house, The Briars,.

I love how the emperor is portrayed in this book and how Betsy gave
Sep 17, 2011 Alyssa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is about a fourteen year old girl named Betsy Balcombe. Betsy lives on remote, ugly island called St. Helena. Napoleon Bonaparte is being transported over to St. Helena, being held prisoner by the British soldiers. Bonaparte is in need for a place to stay and is assigned to reside in Betsy's house. Betsy and the emperor build up a strong and caring relationship for eachother. Both go through many hardships and obstacles. But one day of Betsy's friend's, Huff, is determined to free the ...more
It's been a long time since I've read a book in one sitting but that's what I did with Betsy and The Emperor . I've actually been excited for this book for a while and I'm glad that I've finally been able to read this. I am a bit of a history buff and for some reason or another, I've always loved Napoleon Bonaparte so I may be a little biased when it comes to rating this book high.

The story itself was beautifully crafted from start to finish. It made me feel almost as though I were Betsy. Clear
2005- I could not finish this book fast enough! It sounded like an interesting enough YA book. Betsy Balcombe, a resident of St. Helena, returns home from her London boarding school. St. Helena, you might recognize, was one of the islands Napoleon Bonaparte was exiled too. Betsy arrives home only to have Napoleon arrive several days later, and with his lodgings not yet finished, he is sent to live in her guesthouse. A relationship begins between the two, and while I'm pretty sure the author was ...more
Sharon Honeycutt
This is a fun story about a pre-teen girl who lived on the island where Napoleon Bonaparte has been exiled. It was great in terms of getting to know the character of Bonaparte. And, the character development of Betsy, the main character, was interesting and good for literary analysis. However, there is so much of the story that is completely fictional that I found it bothersome. Since Betsy Balcome really did live, became friends with Napoleon, and even wrote an autobiography, I find it disconce ...more
Betsy Hr
Feb 25, 2008 Betsy Hr rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-favorite
Sebenernya tema cerita dan penyajian penulisannya sih biasa aja, mungkin yang menarik buku ini diangkat dari kisah nyata bahwa Napoleon Bonaparte memang pernah menjadi teman gadis kecil di pulau St. Helena. dan Betsy Balcombe ini benar-benar ada.

Betsy Balcombe adalah gadis kecil pemberontak yang hidup di tahun 1800an yang merasa pulau tempat tinggalnya sangat membosankan. Cerita bergulir saat mantan Kaisar Perancis menjadi tamu di rumah keluarga Betsy sebagai tahanan. Meski awalnya sangat berte
Anne Broyles
Feb 13, 2013 Anne Broyles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Historical fiction is always a melding of fact and fiction, and some readers may find there is too much fiction in this tale of a young woman who befriends Napoleon when he is exiled to St.Helena. The main characters did live on that island at the same time, and there is evidence that they knew each other, though it's doubtful they had such a full-fledged friendship.

Taken without worrying about historical accuracy, BETSY AND THE EMPEROR is a fun romp with an energetic protagonist whose adventure
Aug 07, 2016 Allusiareash rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am not the kind of person that enjoy reading History.

But Betsy and The Emperor was far different from an ordinary Historical Story. It was really enchanting. Staton Rabin and her research totally amazed me. How she draw Betsy as an energetic young lady that is full of curiosity can drag me in to the book.
How she draw Napoleon Bonaparte from a totally different side that I've known only from historical class make me fall in love to the Emperor and started to do more research about his persona
Apr 26, 2015 Bethany rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely and thoroughly enjoyed this sweet book about Napoleon's imprisonment on St. Helena told from the young girl that befriended him.

A fictional account of a real historical figure, told in an appealing way that stays true to many of the details both about "Boney" and his imprisonment. I loved learning about Napoleon in school, but I think I learned quite a bit more from this book than I did from all that studying in elementary school. Haha! That's it! We just need kids to read more!


I re
Oct 04, 2007 Michelle rated it really liked it
Shelves: teens
Melihat sisi lain dari Napoleon Bonaparte merupakan hal utama yang diceritakan dalam novel ini. Betsy, si tokoh utama dalam buku ini, berkenalan dengan Napoleon, yang menjadi tahanan di rumahnya. Tadinya Betsy sangat takut dengan Napoleon, karena memang pada zaman itu, rupanya beliau sangat ditakuti oleh orang-orang. Tapi lama-kelamaan, mereka mulai berteman dan Betsy mulai merasa sayang kepada Napoleon. Makanya, waktu Napoleon ditempatkan di penjara yang jauh dari rumahnya, dia merasa marah sek ...more
Oct 01, 2011 Melrose rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite-books
This is a book about a young girl named Betsy. She lives in an island, that she feels is boring. Besty craves adventure, and it comes one dark night, Napoleone! At once her and this cocky ruler admier each other, and become good friend. But Napoleon craves his old home in France. So Betsy takes the responsiblity to help free him!
This book is about friendship and good fun. I love this book, because it is not hard to read and is so lively with something going on. It also has good humor. This is
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 17, 2016 09:30AM  
Any historical fiction romances? 1 2 Jul 05, 2014 03:40PM  
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Staton Rabin has a B.F.A. in film from New York University. In addition to writing for children, she is a screenwriter; a popular speaker about the art, craft, and business of writing for film; and a veteran story analyst for Scr(i)pt magazine, screenwriters, and producers. Staton Rabin lives in Irvington, New York.
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