The book focuses on the last official mistress of Louis XV, Jeanne Becu, better known as Comtesse du Barry. Coming from humble origins she gets a lotThe book focuses on the last official mistress of Louis XV, Jeanne Becu, better known as Comtesse du Barry. Coming from humble origins she gets a lot of enemies on her way to Versailles and one of them is Madame Adelaide, daughter of the king.
I’ve never liked the women in these books but still somehow loved the books. I don’t know why but here it didn’t work out so well. They were both selfish and wanted the easy life. Adelaide might know Greek but knows nothing about real life. And Jeanne practically grew on the streets; you would think that kicked some sense into her but no. She certainly wasn’t picked for her wits for sure… Even Marie Antoinette was silly and frivolous but even she grew up a bit (too late but still) when needed.
I did feel sad about Louis XV, though. I haven’t been a huge fan of him but I could feel his frustrations with his grandson. Of course, he didn’t help his grandson’s time as a king. Getting a kingdom on a brink of a revolution and debauched life Louis lived and money spending…
I would have liked if it was better stated in what year we were because suddenly you notice the story jumped 2 years, 10 years…
Overall I think this was ok. Which is a shame because I really loved the previous books and in this, I didn’t really care if people got guillotined or not....more
This is second book in a series but works well as a stand-alone too.
The book follows Opaline Duplessi who is the daughter of Sandrine from the previouThis is second book in a series but works well as a stand-alone too.
The book follows Opaline Duplessi who is the daughter of Sandrine from the previous book. She’s a jeweler who during the war makes talismans for women who have lost their loved ones in the war. She hears things through the stones and can give their last word to their loved ones.
Opaline just want’s to be normal and isn’t too happy with La Lune gifts she has. She doesn’t want her mother to teach her any magic and I didn’t get what her problem was with her mother. There were some issues between Opaline and Sandrine and I would have liked to learn more about that.
One time she makes a talisman for a woman who’s lost her son. Usually when she speaks with the dead through the stones, the dead leave her right away. But Jean Luc keeps speaking with her for a long time, and Opaline starts to fall in love with her ghost lover. I think it went on too and started to feel bit weird.
I liked Opaline, she’s loveable and kind, but at times I felt fustraited with her lack of wanting to learn about the magic she posses.
While I loved this book, it did not captivate me as much as The Witch of Painted Sorrows. Can’t really say why that is but there you go. But all in all, I loved this book and would have wanted to know what happens next. I look forward to the next book!...more
When Jeanne Poisson is a young child, a fortuneteller tells her that one day she will be the king’s mistress. From that time her whole life strives foWhen Jeanne Poisson is a young child, a fortuneteller tells her that one day she will be the king’s mistress. From that time her whole life strives for her to become the mistress of king Louis XV’s mistress and her mother calls her Reinette from now on. She does fulfill that prediction and falls in love with the king but soon learns that her position won’t bring her friends in the court. She learns the ways of the court and is elevated to the title Marquise de Pompadour.
Like with the last book, The Sisters of Versailles, I hated all of the characters but I liked the book. That surely takes some talent.
I didn’t really warm to Pompadour who at first was too naïve and sometimes I wondered how she could keep her position. I can’t say exactly why she annoyed me but se did. But you have to admire her for rising from nowhere, becoming the confidante to the king and managing to stay there despite not sharing the kings bed. She’s practical enough allowing the king other mistresses and becoming more like a mother figure for him.
I didn’t like Louis in the first book and I liked him even less here. I just wanted to shake him so many times. He’s come far from the man who had doubts about straying from his wife’s bed. He really started the path to the Revolution and it’s a shame he’s not the one to pay for it. I wondered how Pompadour could put up with him so long because he really wasn’t easy man to be with.
The first part was from Pompadour’s view point but in the later it shifts between her and some of the girls trying to get in her place. Through their eyes you can see how Pompadour has learnt her lessons in shrewdness.
I really enjoyed this and I can’t wait for the next and final book....more
The book started really slow and I was thinking about quitting but at halfway through it changed when things started to happen. I’m glad I ke3,5 stars
The book started really slow and I was thinking about quitting but at halfway through it changed when things started to happen. I’m glad I kept reading because the latter part was really good.
We follow Margot from her childhood when she joins the court of her brother Charles IX to St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre. During that time, she learns to get less innocent and learn to stand up to herself.
My biggest problem, especially at the start, was Margot. I didn’t like her and she was just too naïve. How Catherine de Médici could have such a naïve daughter is a wonder. She did got more likeable towards the end but for some reason I never really warmed up for her. However, I did like how everyone else was presented in the book. Since books usually focus on Catherine de Médici, it was especially interesting to see her through the eyes of her daughter.
This book doesn’t cover her whole life, and I was left wondering how Perinot would have covered her later life. This was my first book by the author and now I’m more curious to read The Sister Queens which I own....more
I haven’t read the previous books but this works well as a stand-alone. I don’t think I’ve read anything set during the Black Death from the common peI haven’t read the previous books but this works well as a stand-alone. I don’t think I’ve read anything set during the Black Death from the common people’s point of view so this was a change for me.
You can see how much superstitions affects everyday life, especially when something bad happens. Makes people accuse everyone from Jews to lepers and cats. How important midwives were to women during the dangerous time of childbirth, and yet how easy it was to accuse them of witchcraft, curses and heresy. Definitely not a safe occupation…
Héloïse can’t turn her back to the people affected by the plague but her husband doesn’t approve her work. I’m trying not to give anything away but I think he went way too far trying to prevent her from helping and I hoped Héloïse wouldn’t have forgiven him. I liked Raoul before that but after that I just couldn’t but hate him. Not an easy time to be a woman for sure.
I liked Héloïse who was strong and kind even after all the hate she’s gotten from the villagers. She didn’t give up trying to find a solution to defeat the plague....more
I haven’t read much about Louis XV, or about French history in general, and I hadn’t heard about the Nesle sisters before. I’ve heard of Mada3,5 stars
I haven’t read much about Louis XV, or about French history in general, and I hadn’t heard about the Nesle sisters before. I’ve heard of Madame de Pompadour and Madame du Barry but that’s about it.
The chapters alternate between the five sisters and it starts with old Hortense remembering what happened in the past.
It’s rather surprising how much I enjoyed this book despite the fact that I didn’t like any of the characters. I hated both Pauline and Mary-Anne, I felt bad for Louise but she should have just stood up for herself, Diane is so oblivious about everything that it’s not even funny and pious Hortense was too righteous. It doen’t give very good picture about Louis either. He’s a weak king who isn’t interested in governing the country and easy to manipulate. When there’s any trouble, he just leaves someone else to sort it out.
There isn’t anything about politics but every time any of the characters speak about the common people, I want to beat them up. Seriously. You definitely can see the seeds of the revolution. ...more
This is the second book I’ve read from the author and it seems that she manages to make me love books about subjects I know nothing about. I don’t knoThis is the second book I’ve read from the author and it seems that she manages to make me love books about subjects I know nothing about. I don’t know a first thing about art but this was really interesting.
When we first meet Sandrine she’s insecure woman who is still grieving for her father, running from her husband and her old life. She’s very likeable and you cannot but feel sorry for her. We see Sandrine become more sure of herself and falling passionately in love. After becoming possessed she starts slowly changing, and not always for the better.
Old family secrets starts to unravel and it seems Sandrine’s grandmother knows more than she tells. Why she warns Sandrine to never fall in love? Even though her grandmother is a courtesan, Sandrine has lived very proper life and grandmother isn’t very happy when Sandrine starts to find her sexuality.
Very enjoyable and gripping read that kept me wanting to know what happens next....more
Napoleon is desperate for an heir and is about to divorce his wife Josephine. For his second wife he chooses 18-year old Marie-Louise, daught3.5 stars
Napoleon is desperate for an heir and is about to divorce his wife Josephine. For his second wife he chooses 18-year old Marie-Louise, daughter of the king of Austria and great-niece of Marie-Antoinette. Marie-Louise is not happy to be married to a man she despises but she knows her duty which keeps her father from losing his crown and the country out of war. Agreeing to this she know she won’t be acting as her brother’s regent when the time comes, and must leave behind the man she loves.
In France she gets an enemy of Napoleon’s sister Pauline, Princess Borghese. Pauline believes Napoleon is set to be the next Pharaoh of Egypt and the would rule it together like the ancient Egyptians did. Pauline is very jealous of her brother and the women he marries.
Paul Moreau is Pauline’s servant who came with her from Haiti to France. He’s been in love with her for years from afar but also sees her faults and feels sympathy for the new empress.
I’m surprised how much I enjoyed this because I don’t know much about France and I’m not a fan of Napoleon. But this was fairly quick and easy read.
I liked Maria-Lucia, or Marie-Louise as she was known in France, and how she was portrayed. She had to mature fast to survive in France and she managed to act with dignity despite being humiliated by Napoleon on numerous occasions. I liked how she became friends with Josephine’s daughter Hortense and found some friendship there.
Napoleon isn’t portrayed here in good light but I didn’t have good image of him before either. Pauline went little to the crazy side but Napoleon was just an idiot.
Maria-Lucia was in love with Count Adam von Neipperg and in this book they were lovers before Maria-Lucia went to France. I know she and Adam got married later but it got me thinking how accurate this was. She was king’s daughter, and meant to be future regent, and was just having an affair that wasn’t even a huge secret? Her father just accepted it? This had me rolling my eyes but I liked Adam and he was way better than Napoleon so I’ll just live with that.
I would have wanted to read more about what Maria-Lucia thought about when she heard that Hortense was to be her lady-in-waiting and what she thought about Josephine.
This wasn’t her best book but then again I’m fan of Egypt anyway but I liked this. I’m curious about her next book because I haven’t read anything about India so that should be interesting....more