**spoiler alert** Genevieve Pasquier is a girl crippled from birth by being born with a clubfoot,loved by her scholarly father but despised by her bea**spoiler alert** Genevieve Pasquier is a girl crippled from birth by being born with a clubfoot,loved by her scholarly father but despised by her beautiful and vain mother who dotes on her more beautiful older sister.
She is in short an ugly duckling but a smart duckling ;)
Her father educates her and gives her books to read.
When on his deathbed he sends for her and gives her some words of wisdom.
But her mother thinks Genevieve was told where her father hid a vast fortune.But Genevieve of course dont know anything and is then put through such abuse that she has no other choice but to leave home.
While escaping she happens on the powerful society witch Catherine Montvoisin wwho proposes a deal:work for her and get revenge.
She become the Marquess, an allegedly 200 year old fortune-teller who acquired immortality through an elixir and its not long before she is popular in the aristocratic circles of Paris.
But things get dangerous when Athenais Montespan,the kings mistress,ask to get her fortune told.
It seems like Monvoisin has some darker agenda that could shake France if the plan is ever carried out.
I dont want to give to much away,but there is enough suspense so you wont get bored.And all the characters feel real and has motivation for their actions. And there is a romance but it takes a while for the heroine to realize who truly loves her.
Judith Merkle Riley has written other historicals wich ive also enjoyed but this book remains my favorite of them. There is some horrible elements in this story(rape,occult rites,poisoning) But in the end the good prevail.
This is built around an actual event in history,the affair of the poisons.And even though the author takes some artistic liberties it stays mostly true to history. ...more