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The Courtier's Secret

3.64  ·  Rating Details  ·  219 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
France, 1680. Louis XIV, the Sun King, is at the height of his power. The court at Versailles is a paradise for privileged young women. Jeanne Yvette Mas Du Bois is unlike most other courtiers. Her thirst for knowledge often incurs her father's brutal wrath. But her uncle encourages Jeanne's independence, secretly teaching her fencing in the palace's labyrinthine basement. ...more
Paperback, 369 pages
Published February 1st 2009 by Kensington (first published January 1st 2009)
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Apr 24, 2010 Cheezcake rated it it was ok
I think the story was good. Enough to keep me reading till midnight, but not much later I suppose. The plot was the kind I like, even if a little cheesy and with a hint of deja-vu (ahem, Shakespeare), I think it's nice to read about Jeanne's exciting life. But I found the writing style of the author, forgive me, quite dreadful. She tried to give an "ancient" style by using big words such as dilemma, abject, behest, nondescript, etc. But they didn't feel natural, and the sentence felt a bit like ...more
Seventeen year old Jeanne du Bois returns from the convent where she's been schooled the last seven years and joins her family at Versailles. Much to her father's disapproval Jeanne is too independent and unladylike, and unbeknownst to him she resumes fencing lessons with her uncle Jules. After one of these lessons, Jules and Jeanne (who is dressed in men's clothes), come across two of the King's Musketeers under attack and save the day when they join in the battle. Not willing to reveal her ide ...more
Aug 14, 2012 Kimberly rated it it was ok
While I didn't wholly dislike this book, not enough to only rate it one star, it really wasn't that good of a read. Not much depth to the characters and the situations in which they found themselves were rather unbelievable. I'm just glad that I finished it so I could count it for my library's summer reading program.
Apr 02, 2015 Donna rated it did not like it
Shelves: historical
How can a book with so many swordfights be so boring?

The characters were flat and stereotypical, and we were told about a lot of restrictions that didn't seem to affect them much. Long passages about watching the king felt more like recited research than moments that were critical to the story or setting. Descriptions were often awkward or didn't fit the tone of the scene. Worst of all was the pace: it started about 50 pages too early and tapered off at with some "oh, I guess we're done here" en
May 27, 2010 Kate rated it it was ok
Too much cant, improbably fiery heroine. More frank treatments of domestic violence than usual in these books, so kudos for that, but meh.
Feb 12, 2009 Stacey rated it liked it
This the first post-Twilight book that I actually stayed up late to finish. Fluffy, but entertaining.
Nov 10, 2011 Jenny rated it it was ok
Shelves: historical, book-club
Writing only so so on this one. If I have to read about moisture secreting one more time, I could scream.
Dec 05, 2014 Michelle rated it liked it
This historical novel is set in the time of Louis XIV’s court in France. Jeanne has recently returned to court. She chafes under her socially climbing father’s restrictions but enjoys secret fencing lessons from her uncle. During one of her lessons, while masked, they encounter some of the famous musketeers, being set upon by criminals. They intervene and Jeanne saves the life of one of the musketeers. Thinking she is a man, they invite her to come be a part of their organization. Jeanne decides ...more
Jun 16, 2013 Victoria rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
This was a very quick, fluffy read. It's a familiar storyline, one that we've all read and seen before, where a young woman dresses up as a man to access something denied to her as a woman. In this case it's helping the Musketeers. And, like other familiar story lines, she falls in love with one of the men who sees her in disguise. There are other common character tropes in this novel. She is a sympathetic but unique character with an abusive upbringing and callous father, she has one sassy frie ...more
Jul 08, 2010 Alex rated it did not like it
Dec 14, 2009 Bookaholics rated it liked it
The Courtier’s Secret by Donna Russo Morin
Historical Romance- Feb. 1st, 2009
3 stars

The Courtier’s Secret by Donna Russo Morin is a historical romance that is set in France 1862 at the court of the Sun King, Louis the XIV. The heroine, a plucky young lady who secretly learns the art of fencing and is renowned for her misbehaviors, disguises herself as man and aids the Musketeers in uncovering an assassination plot against the Queen. Of course, as it is expected, she falls in love with one of th
Tara Chevrestt
Sep 01, 2009 Tara Chevrestt rated it really liked it
The back of this novel recommends this to fans of Phillippa Gregory. I beg to differ. It was good, but does not contend with Gregory. Except for much court gossip and intrigue, it bears little resemblence to a Gregory novel. Too fluffy at times. Readers enter the court of Louis XIV, the Sun King. He bears much similarity to Henry the Eighth. He is pompous, full of himself, and is just utterly ridiculous constantly romping around with women and of course, one mustn't ever say anything he does not ...more
The novel tells the story of Jeanne du Bois and her life at Versailles in the court of the Sun King, Louis XIV. Jeanne’s father does not particularly like his daughter as she is too independent and unladylike as she has fencing lessons from her Uncle Jules. After one of these secret lessons, Jeanne and Jules come across two of the King’s Musketeers and join in the battle. Jeanne then takes on her alter ego Jean Luc which allows her to live life as a Musketeer. Jeanne falls in love with one of he ...more
Sarah O'Brien
Nov 07, 2011 Sarah O'Brien rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed
Jeanne Mas du Bois is a young courtier in the court of King Louis XIV of France. Her entire family lives in the castle at Versailles along with thousands of other courtiers vying for the eye of the king. Jeanne, however, is very different from any ordinary courtier. Her brightest wish is to be a musketeer and join Louis' forces. Her most acute disinterest is climbing the social courtier ladder. Not that Jeanne isn't a lady, she just doesn't find satisfaction in napkin-folding and watching the ki ...more
In the court of Louis XIV, the Sun King, courtier’s flock to Versailles for many varying reasons. For many it is the prestige and power gained by being a participating member of the court, for other’s it is for their love of the King and his Queen, for many it is a paradise. But for some courtiers like Jeanne Mas du Bois, life in the court is a pretty but unpleasant prison.

Jeanne, is recently returned to life at court after living in a convent for the past ten years. An independent and spirited
Carolyn Russett
Jul 15, 2015 Carolyn Russett rated it liked it
Decent beach read. set in France in 1600's
Marty Mayer
Mar 27, 2015 Marty Mayer rated it liked it
Interesting look into The Sun King's reign. I expected Athos, Porthos and Aramis to appear, but Henri was a very credible successor. Dumas would have appreciated Jeanne's angst, I believe.
Aug 31, 2009 Andjelija rated it really liked it
in this book there is a girl called Jeanne, she lives in 1682 in versi under the rain of louis XIV.when she becomes"jean luc" so that she can becom a musketeers. when she falls in love with Henri another musketeer. then she almost gets killed.

when jeanne was walking in the palec garden she remmeder how she used o play by a stream as a kid i do the same thing not always with a stream thought.

this book is for evry girl who like to read love stores.
Jessica Powell
Mostly, it was a fluffy book. What drove the book was the love story to which the story about her double life and the attempt on the queen's life took a backseat. This was disappointing to me. However, it was an overall entertaining, though I may not think of it past closing the cover.
Christa Huffman
Feb 13, 2011 Christa Huffman rated it it was ok
Good story, overall, but the historical details don't seem quite right. Set in the court of Louis XIV, the sun king, whose wife (who is definitely not Marie Antoinette) utters Marie Antoinette's famous "Let them eat cake."
Aug 27, 2013 Babel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un melodrama de amor, rebeldía y lujo palaciego. Más damisela que mosquetera, pero ha tenido la suficiente esgrima como para sentirme heredera de D'artagnan por un rato ;o)
Lisa Tener
Feb 22, 2009 Lisa Tener rated it it was amazing
The cover doesn't do it justice--this is a great read about a female musketeer. Well-researched historical fiction, fun to read, great will transport you.
Apr 09, 2009 Joycelyn rated it liked it
Enjoyable glimpse into the court of Louis XIV. Aside from some awkwardness in word choice and her depiction of the romance scenes, a solid first novel.
Elise White
May 11, 2010 Elise White rated it liked it
Predictable but riveting nonetheless.
Jan 30, 2010 Kathleen rated it it was ok
about average light historical romance
Rachel Luginbuhl
Aug 12, 2013 Rachel Luginbuhl rated it it was amazing
Good fun historical read, loved it.
Sandra Gallegos
Aburrido no, lo siguiente.
Maria marked it as to-read
Jun 17, 2016
Fabiana Alvarez
Fabiana Alvarez marked it as to-read
Jun 15, 2016
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Donna Russo Morin is the award winning of author of historical fiction. A graduate of the University of Rhode Island, she lives near the shore with her partner, Carl. Her two sons, Devon and Dylan--an opera singer and chef--are still her greatest works in progress.

Donna enjoys meeting with book groups in person and via Skype chat. Visit her website at;
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