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Mademoiselle Boleyn

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,895 Ratings  ·  170 Reviews
When her father is assigned the task of spying on the French Court, the charming and sweetly innocent Anne Boleyn is delighted by the thought of a new adventure. And she is not to be disappointed, for her beautiful sister, Mary, has been handed a mission: to let herself be seduced by the King of France in order to uncover his secrets.

Mesmerized by the thrilling passion,
Paperback, 368 pages
Published October 17th 2007 by NAL (first published October 1st 2007)
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Community Reviews

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Dawn (& Ron)
Nov 15, 2011 Dawn (& Ron) rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anne and Mary Boleyn and Tudor fans, Leonardo da Vinci
I was reminded tonight of having read this book and it made me think about what it was that I liked about it. This tells of a different time period in Anne Boleyn's life, from when she is a little 9 year old girl and going over to the French court with her sister Mary, and finishes upon her return to England years later.

Their father is as manipulative and power hungry as he was in the tv series, with not much middle ground. Maxwell has Mary as the bed hopping sister with Anne learning from givi
Jan 13, 2008 Missybw rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: historical fiction fans
Excellent! In a word, that's it, excellent. A very interesting viewpoint of the early years of one of British history's most misunderstood figures. Anne Boleyn is typically written off as a royal bimbo (more aptly that would be Catherine Howard) or worse, a royal maneater (ala Catherine the Great, but with less power). Truthfully, my take on Anne is that she was more modern than the times could allow and her power was only destroyed thru a rewrite of who she actually was. She had the misfortune ...more
May 11, 2010 Roniya rated it liked it
This novel showcases an intriguing snapshot of Anne's life, namely her largely unexplored childhood. While the plot and incidents are engaging enough ,in my opinion, to make for a worthwhile read,you would think that any story focusing on her childhood would point out how she became the calculating schemer she revealed herself to be in England. However,it is as if the novel assumes this part of her personality to be a spontaneous eruption. Throughought the duration,she is portrayed as a rather m ...more
Apr 02, 2008 Lauren rated it really liked it
Caution to anyone who does not like to read raunchy books. Some sections made me blush! However, as anyone familiar with the Rennaissance court of Francois I knows, Francois got around. Further, women at that time period were used as pawns to advance the power of their families. Thus, while the virtual prostitution of Mary Boleyn is shocking for modern tastes, ambitious parents would often push their (young and presumably unwilling) daughters into the beds of kings. While there is no historical ...more
Bekah Porter-Sandy
Feb 03, 2013 Bekah Porter-Sandy rated it really liked it
This book did it. I have fallen helplessly in love with Robin Maxwell and her delightfully delicious historical fiction.
I just happened upon her "Jane" novel when browsing a local bookshop, and while I initially purchased the book for its subject matter, I found myself back at the bookstore looking for her other titles because I so much enjoyed her style and unique voice.
Fortunately, I was not disappointed, and both purchases have brought me nothing but satisfaction.
I enjoy her light touch, whic
Heather Domin
Oct 25, 2011 Heather Domin rated it liked it
This was an enjoyable read, entertaining, well written, with a large cast of supporting characters I really liked. (Poor Mary Boleyn, I felt for her the most.) The history was well done, and it was interesting to look at the time period from a different direction. The only drawback was Anne herself. When you tell a story in first person POV, that person has to be present at all the important events; I don't mind that at all. But Anne's special-ness was laid on a little thick: every royal person ...more
Mar 18, 2008 Recynd rated it really liked it
I really liked this book; Anne was portrayed in a positive light (for once), and accurate or not, it was sort of refreshing.

My knowledge of the Tudors is embarrassingly limited, I'm afraid; when I read fiction based on historical fact, I never know what's fact and what isn' I end up taking EVERYTHING with a grain of salt. I DO know that no one, famous or not, is all bad or all good; with that in mind, this book was a nice counter to all the negative portrayals about her I've read recently.
Jul 25, 2010 Kari rated it really liked it
This was a nice story set in Anne's childhood in the French court. I might have given it 5 stars, but at the end there was a Q&A with the author in which she complains about another book by a different author. ("One book actually claimed that a male child born to Mary, fathered by Henry while she was his mistress, was stolen by Anne and brought up by her at court as her own. That Anne brought up her sister's son at court, claiming it as Henry's and hers, is as far as I know, entirely fictiti ...more
Feb 26, 2011 Laura rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011, favorites
Anyone who is truly interested in Anne Boleyn will want to read this book, and I think be pleasantly surprised. Even enthusiasts of Boleyn or the Tudor period might want to consider Maxwell's take. The novel is a coming of age story that examines Anne's early life at about nine years old and her time in the Netherlands and then when her father, Thomas Boleyn sent her and elder sister Mary to the French court. Everything about this book was fascinating, especially as it was written in first perso ...more
May 24, 2008 YoSafBridg rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-and-read
Robin Maxwell considers her Mademoiselle Boleyn to be a prequel to her previous (rather excellent) works as it tells of Anne’s youth (before she rather fatally catches the eye of the lecherous King Henry IVIII, much of it spent in the French court of King Francois and Queen Claude (daughter of King Louis XII). She befriends Leonardo da Vinci (not mentioned in the history books but imagined, i suppose reasonably, by Maxwell).

It's been quite some time since i read her earlier works and, memory be
Jan 28, 2015 Dana rated it it was ok
As someone who has read a lot of medieval history books, both fiction and nonfiction, I found this book a little hard to swallow. Anne Boleyn has gotten a very unfair shake in history, but I doubt sincerely she was EVER as naive as she was purported to be in this book. I found the scenes between her and some of the other characters to be cloyingly sweet and silly, and I think the alleged friendship between her and Leonardo daVinci to be totally over-the-top. Not really sure I would recommend thi ...more
Nov 06, 2015 Lindsay rated it it was amazing
Ahhhhh! Another book about Anne. *sigh* I enjoyed learning about her early years in France. What a smart girl that was full of life and potential.

What an eye opener on how women were nothing but pawns in a mans world. That to them, you were just something to be used for either sexual pleasure or for child bearing.

Anne's sister, Mary, had beauty for and against her. It was like she was put in to sex slavery by her father, then the King of France. Just when finally things were happy for her, King
Lisa Lap
May 15, 2008 Lisa Lap rated it really liked it
This is a time period I really love. All of the court conspiracies, the underlying strive for power at a time when women had very little recognized authority, all the behind the scenes machinations etc. Truly intriguing.

I admire the author's ability to portray Anne as a much more sympathetic character rather than the typical villification of her. I found this book a fascinating read and was really disappointed at the abrupt end.
May 11, 2015 Kat rated it liked it
I have read so many books on Anne Boleyn over the last few years that you'd think I'd have exhausted all of the possible plots by now. I did fear as much but was pleasantly surprised by Robin Maxwell's take on this popular character in Mademoiselle Boleyn.

Mademoiselle Boleyn is a novel that chooses to explore Anne's earlier life rather than the life we all know; the rise and subsequent decline of Queen Anne of England. A majority of the novel takes place in France during the early 1500's as Anne
Mar 26, 2015 Caitlin rated it really liked it
Read this review and others like it at my blog Brains and Beauty.

This book amazing! I seriously did not want to put it down, but I also didn’t want it end. The great part of this book is that it explores a part of Anne Boleyn’s childhood that is not usually talked about. The author does a great job of imagining the French court during Francois I’s reign and I found myself spellbound within this world. As well as creating as magical setting, she also manages to make Anne human and likeable.

This w
Rachel Swords
Nov 24, 2013 Rachel Swords rated it really liked it
Shelves: tudors
Reading Tudors fiction is like trying new food: you never know if you're going to like it or not. Well, in the case of Robin Maxwell's "Mademoiselle Boleyn," I liked it very much. Maxwell, who had previously written the wonderful "Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn," which focused on Anne's courtship with Henry VIII and last days in the Tower of London, chooses to write about a little known period of Anne's life- her days at the court of France, first serving Queen Mary Tudor, then Queen Claude. The st ...more
Feb 03, 2012 M A rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 10, 2012 Anastacia rated it really liked it
This book was published in 2007 & I am rather surprised that it took me this long to read it. I guess I'm rather late to the game.

This book is a rather decent historically accurate (and the biggest things that Maxwell takes liberties with, she tells you about in the back of the book) book about Anne Boleyn before she becomes infamous, told from her point of view. It's rather different than other Tudor stuff I've read, & I rather enjoy how different the tale is. Anne is seen first as a yo
Jenny GB
Nov 28, 2012 Jenny GB rated it really liked it
Robin Maxwell takes on the early life of Anne Boleyn in this fascinating novel. The novel tells about Anne's years in the French court with her sister. While in the French court Anne really grows up and comes of age. She learns about men and women, politics, sexuality, and religion. Many formative experiences take place that shape her future life as queen of England.

I haven't read all the literature about Anne Boleyn, but I don't think this is a road usually traveled by authors. I usually read n
Aug 29, 2013 Kay rated it really liked it
I have read a LOT about the Tudors, particularly Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII. This book stands apart from many of the others though, as it is told from Anne Boleyn's point of view. I think Maxwell does a great job working with historical language and putting a young girl's thoughts in perspective with the time period. Occasionally she slips into more modern-sounding language, but it's relatively infrequent and thus is easy to overlook. This is turning out to be a really fascinating read, detailin ...more
Isabelle Chen
Dec 07, 2011 Isabelle Chen rated it it was amazing
I was obsessed with Anne Boleyn after watching the TV drama Tuduors features Natalie Dormer. After reading Robin's version of Anne's story in French court before going back to UK. I come to know the story behind this great woman, she was the translator to French King at the age of 9, witness the French Queen giving birth at 9, knew the wars and politics very well by the age of 10, became friends with the master Da Vinci at 10; apart from her own story, her sister Mary Boleyn was a complete tradg ...more
May 01, 2013 Shannon rated it really liked it
Mademoiselle Boleyn is Robin Maxwell’s follow up to her debut novel, The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn. Once again, Maxwell gives the reader an innovative, imaginative while plausible account of Anne Boleyn’s youth during her service at the French court. It was refreshing to delve into this period of Anne’s life that has been mostly overlooked. Certainly these were Anne’s, like most young girl’s, formative years and I believe that Anne’s personality was greatly shaped by her time in France. Also r ...more
Feb 15, 2008 Meredith rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Philippa Gregory
Recommended to Meredith by: Deb
Summary from

When her father is assigned the task of spying on the French Court, the charming and sweetly innocent Anne Boleyn is delighted by the thought of a new adventure. And she is not to be disappointed, for her beautiful sister, Mary, has been handed a mission: to let herself be seduced by the King of France in order to uncover his secrets.

Mesmerized by the thrilling passion, intrigue, and betrayal that unfolds, Anne discovers the power of being a woman who catches the eye of a
Dec 01, 2015 Sarah rated it it was ok
This book is on my Read shelf, but if I'm being honest, I didn't finish it. I picked it up at a nearby thrift store that always has a ton of good books and started on it right away.
The beginning had my attention for sure. I love descriptions of life at court and how ladies behaved back then. But I honestly had this book confused with The Other Boleyn Girl for some strange reason, which is what I really want to read.
Once it started focusing on Ann and her relationship with DaVinci, I was bored. I
Emily Cullen
Sep 01, 2013 Emily Cullen rated it it was amazing
I loved this book and just wanted it to go on and on! It was fascinating to learn about the French Court and the lives of King Francois and Queen Claude, and get a taste of the environment in which Anne and Mary grew up.

I really felt the book "made sense", and put a great background to the well known story of Annes' rise and fall as Queen of England. It was like seeing the other side of a coin - you can see how she might have learnt the skills of flirtation and manipulating men at the french co
Jan 13, 2012 Kerry rated it liked it
For the most part, I found Mademoiselle Boleyn to be one of the better written pieces of historic fiction that I have read that deals with the life and history of Anne Boleyn. In some ways, it reminds me of Philippa Gregory’s The Constant Princess. Both M. Boleyn and The Constant Princess deal with the formative years of Henry VIII’s wives (Katherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn) long before their historic clash over a place as Henry’s wife and queen. In both cases, you could see hints of personali ...more
Sep 28, 2013 Maria rated it really liked it
This is the story of Anne Boleyn's early life. She is first sent to the court of the Archduchess Margaret of Burgundy in France along with her sister Mary. The Archduchess really likes her and she gets to know Charles the future Emperor. After this her father sends her and Mary with Mary Tudor (Henry VIII's sister) when she goes to marry the French king. Many interesting personalities such as the Archduchess, Charles, Princess Claude of France, Leonardo da Vinci, Francois King of France and Anne ...more
Dec 21, 2015 Kat rated it really liked it
an enjoyable read of fiction (although some events are historically true) concerning the Boleyn sisters. shorter than The Other Boleyn Sister, I enjoyed the additional focus on Mary (warning that family "values", especially the Boleyn family patriarch) are not in line with modern socially acceptable tactics. Exploring Anne's childhood and how those experiences and situations may have affected her personality and the choices she made was a highlight of Maxwell's take on this historical period. Ad ...more
Aug 20, 2012 Heather rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! I love historical fiction and historical biographies, and I found this book was such a great story of such an unexplored part of the life of Anne Boleyn. I have always found Anne Boleyn to be a captivating person, and there is a tendency in many authors to create a cunning, wily, and manipulative version of Anne. I liked how Robin Maxwell chose to show Anne Boleyn in her innocence before her life was forever changed by the ambitions of her family, and her chance for true love ...more
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Robin Maxwell began writing novels about the historical figures she had been obsessing about since graduating from Tufts University with a degree in Occupational Therapy. Her first novel, "The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn," now in its 24th printing, won two YA awards and has been translated into fourteen languages. "The Wild Irish" - an epic tale of Ireland's rebel queen, Grace O'Malley - closed ou ...more
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