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En nos vertes années

(Fortune de France #2)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  376 ratings  ·  24 reviews
1563-1567 : quatre années de paix entre catholiques et protestants de France. Paix fragile, mais suffisante pour que Pierre de Siorac, héros de Fortune de France, et son frère Samson soient envoyés par leur père étudier la médecine à Montpellier.
Voici nos deux frères huguenots sur les grands chemins du royaume, puis parmi les docteurs et apothicaires de l'Ecole de Médecine
Paperback, Livre de Poche, 598 pages
Published June 15th 1994 by De Fallois (first published 1979)
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 ·  376 ratings  ·  24 reviews

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Clif Hostetler
Feb 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The is the second of a thirteen volume series of historical novels titled “Fortunes of France” written by Robert Merle. This book covers the years 1566 to 1567; the other books in the series go from 1547 to 1661. This period of history in France is the time of the French Wars of Religion (1562-98). It was NOT a good time to be alive. However, it provides a setting rich in potential drama for a historical novel.

This book begins with the main character’s narration of his memories as a 15-year old
This is the second volume of the Fortune de France series.

Merle has a particular way to portray the French history which makes the plot flows naturally.

In this volume, the author covers the period of 1563 to 1567, when peace still exists between catholics (papists) and protestants (huguenots).

The brothers Pierre de Siorac and Samson are sent to Montpellier in order to study medicine. In the meantime, a new bloodily civil war erupts which calls what is coming next, St. Bartholomew's Day massacr
Keith Currie
Sep 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
‘Is this what your Calvin preaches?’

The second volume of Merle’s Fortunes of France weighs in at a little short of 600 pages. This homage to Dumas focuses on the French wars of religion and its protagonists are Protestant Huguenots. In this novel the reader follows Pierre De Siorac’s journey to Montpellier to study medicine and concludes with a sectarian massacre in Nimes.

The first half of the book focuses rather too much on Pierre’s Rabelaisian amatory adventures, but the plot takes a much dark
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Druhý díl této rozsáhlé ságy nezklame, dávám dokonce o hvězdu víc než první části. Pěkně a detailně popsané prostředí středověké univerzity s množstvím zajímavých postav, k tomu znovu propukající válka mezi katolickou a hugenotskou stranou, to všechno okořeněné nějakou tou romantikou ... jeden z nejlepších dílů celé série.
Mark Ellis
Aug 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hardly ever give up on a book but I have on this one. I enjoyed the first in the series but this, the second, I found very hard going. Endless verbiage about beauteous women and tedious philosophical, medical and religious disputes of the time. The plot never seems to get going. I have the audio version for the car. Maybe I'll listen to a little more but for now I've had enough.
Jul 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sehr schöner, französischer historischer Abenteuerroman aus der Zeit der Religionskriege in Frankreich, wobei die Abenteuer gleichermaßen amouröser wie kämpferischer Natur sind und ebenso zurückhaltend wie eindeutig in der Darstellung. Viel Witz und Ironie, liebevoll gezeichnete Charaktere, ein Ich-Erzähler, der sich selbst nicht so ernst nimmt und drastische Darstellungen bietet ebenso wie pointierte Dialoge über Gott, die Wissenschaft und die Welt, und die Liebe. Auch dieser 2. Band war toll g ...more
Let's be realistic, I'm not going to finish this.
The writing style is strange, there's no real story arch, nothing really happens.

Five years ago i read the first volume and really liked it, so I have no idea why this does not work for me.
Nov 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Not quite James Bond in 16th Century France, but that feels like the spirit. Rollicking adventure yarn with numberless wenches and little accountability for the hero's sins. Although no Bond girl ever said this to 007: "What! You did it with a witch? And on a gravestone?"
Ronan Mcdonnell
Jan 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lots of bravura and riding of wenches gets in the way of the book. It's about the nature of a civil / religious conflict and the complicity of both sides. Reading this as a stand alone volume, to much of the hero's valiant storytelling intrudes. But the mistake is mine. I did read it alone, without volume 1 or those that follow.
It does have some interesting thoughts within throwaway lines; that women should be regarded in the same light as men, about accepting others as they are, allowing each h
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Le jeune héros, Samson, intelligent, aventureux et d'une gaité exceptionnelle, accompagné de son frère et de leur valet, quittent le Périgord pour Montpellier, pour y faire des études de médecine.
L'écriture est belle, le langage est ancien, la fiction se mêle à la réalité de ce XVIème siècle où règnent mort, horreur et affrontements entre catholiques et huguenots.

Cyril N
Jan 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Roman un peu plus orienté aventures, divertissant, mais avec un peu moins de fond que le premier je trouve.
Dec 28, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was rather too much of a bawdy romp at times compared to the first.
Dec 11, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Book 1, The Brethren, Robert Merle has written an intensive historical novel set in France during one of its most turbulent periods. In 16th century France, battle rages between the Huegenots and the Catholics with murderous results from both sides. At the heart of the story are two compelling protagonists - Siorac and Sauvterre who try to hide their Protestant roots from the world as they amass their fortune. They swore an oath to become brothers, hence the title of the first book - The Bret ...more
Czarny Pies
Feb 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: french-lit
This is a well-intentioned book that failed to touch a cord with me. "En nos vertes années" is a the second of a thirteen volume cycle on France's age of religious wars. It is hard not to agree with Merle who shows both sides being guilty of fanaticism, brutality and hypocrisy. The problem is ultimately the smug perspective of the author.

Pierre de Siorac who will be the protagonist for the first six volumes of the series has a Catholic mother of the old noblesse and a Protestant father who has e
Antonio Nunez
Sep 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is volume 2 of Merle's Fortunes de France famous series. In the first one we read the backstory and early years of the protagonist Jean de Siorac, the younger son a recently minted aristocrat, soldier, farmer and Huguenot in mid-sixteenth century France. In volume 2 Jean is sent to study medicine to the famous university of Montpellier accompanied by his handsome, seemingly autistic halfbrother Samson and his page Miroul. University life at the time is beautifully rendered in all its gory, ...more
Roman Clodia
In this second of the Fortunes of France series, Pierre de Siorac is now about 16 and sets off for Montpellier where he is to learn the art of medicine. With him is his half-brother Samson, handsome but disconcertingly moral when set against Pierre’s own youthful spirits. The two young men take on the opposing roles of Jean de Siorac and Jean de Sauveterre in the first book with their blood-brother friendship and their opposing characters.

Alongside the ‘wisdom’ that the young men learn en route
Jeremy Reppy
Jul 02, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
The story is told by Pierre, the son of a baron, who, along with his half-brother Samson, travels to Montpellier to study medicine. The brothers are Huguenots (French Protestants) at a time when Catholicism is predominant in France and tension is great between the groups. This makes for an amusing adventure in the first part of the book when the brothers and their valet, Miroul (one of the most delightful characters in the book), join up with a group of Roman Catholic pilgrims on the travel to M ...more
E Vikander
Apr 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
City of Wisdom and Blood continues the story of Pierre Siorac as he travels from his home, in the Perigord region of France, to study medicine in Montpellier. The tumultuous struggle between Catholicism and Protestantism plays an even greater role in this story set in the late 1500s. Pierre becomes more of an aesthete in this second book of the series, an “ardent student and an ardent lover” or—in a less kindly but frequently stated way—a “skirt chaser.” As with The Brethren, I was entranced by ...more
1566: Die Brüder Samson und Pierre reisen nach Montepellier um Medizin zu studieren. Bereits auf der Reise müssen sie ihren Mut gegen Räuber und Diebe beweisen. Sie lernen Kaufleute und Händler, Gauner und Wirtsweiber kennen. Während Pierre der Weiblichkeit kaum entgehen kann, ist Samson geplagt von Reue und Schuldgefühlen gegenüber Gott. Sie dürfen ihren Glauben jedoch nicht allzu offen zeigen, denn noch herrscht nur ein zarter Frieden zwischen den Katholiken und den Reformierten. In Montepelli ...more
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Brethen was, at first, a bit slow, while all of France's history is thoroughly explained, and the differences between the papists and Huguenots. Told by Pierre Siorac, merely a boy, the story tells of his father's past and adventures. In City of Wisdom and Blood, we see more action in a grippling, emotionally captivating narrative told by a much more mature Pierre. His love conquests, his impulsive behavior and his good-nature heart will have you asking for more.

Im done with his book... and
Jan 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took a while to get really going. The sons were not as appealing as the fathers, and the historical connections were not as frequent as in the previous novel. My interest in early modern medicine was not as great either. But at the end, fathers and sons are reunited, there is looming another sad outbreak of religious turmoil (and therefore promises of action and food for thought), so I am optimistic about the future of the series. It feels good to find a series that will be satisfying!
Oct 08, 2016 rated it liked it
I really wanted to like this book but unfortunately I couldn't finish it. Though it has some cute humorous moments, there doesn't seem be an actual plot, the story and the characters (I didn't read volume 1) develop really slowly, while the accurate but fairly repetitive 16th century language makes for a dragging read. Sorry, Robert Merle! I do appreciate your deep research, subtle humor and historical accuracy but I'm sure even you know that your books are not for everyone :(
Oct 05, 2015 rated it liked it
A great second book in a series I'm looking forward to completing. I wish I could read it in the original French, but this is an excellent translation.
Stephanie Davies
Sep 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even better than the first. How many years do I have to wait for the whole series to be translated?!
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Born in Tebessa located in ,what was then, the French colony of Algeria. Robert Merle and his family moved to France in 1918. Merle wrote in many styles and won the Prix Goncourt for his novel Week-end à Zuydcoote. He has also written a 13 book series of historical novels, Fortune de France. Recreating 16th and 17th century France through the eyes of a fictitious Protestant doctor turned spy, he w ...more

Other books in the series

Fortune de France (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • Fortune de France
  • Paris, ma bonne ville
  • Le Prince que voilà
  • La violente amour
  • La Pique du jour
  • La Volte des vertugadins
  • L'Enfant Roi
  • Les Roses de la vie
  • Le lys et la pourpre
  • La Gloire et les Périls