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Madame Tussaud's Apprentice: An Untold Story of Love in the French Revolution

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  247 ratings  ·  83 reviews
In 1789, with the starving French people on the brink of revolution, orphaned Celie Rosseau, an amazing artist and a very clever thief, runs wild with her protector, Algernon, trying to join the idealistic freedom fighters of Paris. But when she is caught stealing from none other than the king's brother and the lady from the waxworks, Celie must use her drawing talent to b ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published August 1st 2014 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published July 4th 2014)
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Average rating 3.60  · 
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 ·  247 ratings  ·  83 reviews

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Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bloomsbury
I loved it. Over the past few months, I've developed a love for young adult fiction based upon the French Revolution, and Madame Tussaud's Apprentice is among the most passionate and engaging I've read thus far. Celie is homeless, thrown out onto the streets of Paris an orphan and not being able to afford the roof over her head. Rescued by Algernon, a young man living on the streets and has taught her to steal from the wealthy to survive. Algernon seems oblivious to her feelings towards him and ...more
Aug 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: YA historical Ficton Lovers
3 1/2

This book surprised me, I don't know what I was expecting, but sure wasn't what I got. That is a good thing in case you are wondering.

When I found that I had won this in a Goodreads giveaway I had a moment of worry. I don't usually care for YA books, and I have never liked the kind that have twenty-first century characters clothed in period dress and in a historic time since I get jolted out of the time slot by the characters' actions. But, this book didn't do that. I like that everyone ac
Leta Patton
Nov 17, 2019 rated it did not like it
Yikes with the historical information and glaring inaccuracies. YA historical fiction deserves better 😬😬😬😬
Jul 17, 2014 rated it liked it
At first, I absolutely adored this book. After further contemplation and after the initial buzz settled, my love wasn't quite as strong.

Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice can easily be summarized as thus: it is a story of a girl unwillingly caught up in the midst of one of the most contentious periods in history--The French Revolution. She is torn between joining the revolutionaries and staying impassive, a choice which will ultimately determine her fate in this war.

Duble’s interpretation of the Revol
Kirstie Ellen
Jun 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
4.5 stars

Initial Thoughts Upon Finishing
This was brilliant and clever and I loved it. Such a clever representation of the French Revolution and utterly unique. This is one of the most interesting stories I've read in historical fiction - Madame Tussaud? Yes please.

Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice
This book was unbelievably enjoyable. The reason I first noticed it was because of its stunning cover, but then I read the title and decided that I absolutely had to have it. But then it got even better, when
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this interesting book. I would love to read some more historical fiction after this book. It did feel a little bit rushed at some points, but that didn't bother me since I really wanted to know how the story would continue. Overall I very much enjoyed this book :) ...more
Yolanda Sfetsos
Nov 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
When I received this book from Bloomsbury, I didn't know anything about it. After reading the blurb, I wasn't sure if I would actually enjoy it. I haven't read many books about the French Revolution, and I'm really fussy about historical stories. But I do know who Madame Tussaud is, and the thought of her having an apprentice intrigued me.

So I decided to give it a go... and I'm glad I did.

Célie and Algernon are teenage orphans who live on the streets of Paris and survive the only way they know h
Jun 09, 2014 rated it liked it
I picked up a copy of the ARC at BEA.

Celie is an orphan, living on the streets of Paris with her partner in crime, Algernon, on the eve of the French Revolution. They stay alive by stealing from the aristocracy. When they have the chance to steal from the Comte d'Artois - the king's brother and the man responsible for the death of Celie's father - she jumps at the chance. Unfortunately, she is caught when a fellow orphan accidentally steals a bag of wax heads from the famous Madame Tussaud. Mada
Leila Karaca
I considered stopping reading this book quite a few times. I didn't though, and I can't say I'm glad I stuck to it.
I was just hoping that at some point things would start kicking off and I'd be more interested in the story, but unfortunately that didn't happen.
None of the characters really impressed me or were very memorable.
The plot didn't do much for me and I felt like everything that happened in the book was rushed.
Things started to get a little better when the revolution began, and the book
Apr 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I'm always up for a story about the French Revolution, and until now, I didn't know that Madame Tussaud had been involved. This is a well-researched, well-crafted novel. I loved the details about life at Versailles, and I found Celie a strong and appealing heroine. ...more
Jul 16, 2014 added it
Shelves: 2014-releases
I wish I hadn't read this. ...more
Jul 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Review to follow - great book for age 12+ with backdrop of French Revolution and that fascinating woman Mme Tussaud.
Apr 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Really cool seeing the French stuff before my trip! Yay
Robyn Markow
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Even though this book is written for the YA market;adults(myself included) will probably like this interesting,rather off-beat tale about fictional 15 year old Celie Rousseau ;who goes from living by her wits and hoping to be a part of the burgeoning Revolution in the streets of 1789 Paris along with her accomplice (and unrequited love) Algernon, to working for Famed Wax-Works Artist Madame Tussaud. After they get caught by King's brother, the Comte' De Artois whom,as a result to having Celie's ...more
Feb 13, 2021 rated it did not like it
I don't comment often. There's also very little chance of me rating a book with 1 Star - after all, i chose to read it because it fits my preferences and mostly there's something, that i would like a about a book. Espcially historical fiction which I just love. But this, oh this..was the most annoying read in a while.

In historical fiction, I can overlook a lot of things. Timelines get changed, people get added or left out. I'm no stickler for historical accuracy - but for the love of books, the
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'd been wanting to read MADAME TUSSAUND'S APPRENTICE by Kathleen Benner Duble because I studied the French Revolution in a French-language university course. I wanted to see how the author handled such a complex subject.

I write and read a lot of historical fiction. What was off-putting about this novel for me, but maybe not for young readers, was the first-person present tense (mostly the latter) that gave it a contemporay voice at times.

However, I think the story would be interesting to youn
3.5 stars. This review also appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
A copy of this book was provided by Bloomsbury Australia for review. All opinions are my own.

This was an enjoyable historical fiction novel set during the French Revolution. Even though I love my historical fiction, this is the first one that I’ve read about 18th century France, and I found it to be highly fascinating.

In this book, our protagonist, Celie, is an orphan living on the streets of Paris with Algern
Feb 01, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: d
This was a good, solid historical read. Duble did a great job of showcasing each side's point of view and making each sympathetic. Placing Celie with the famous Madame Tussaud was a great touch and it was rather refreshing to have such an interesting historical figure in the mix. The book does do that thing where the author reminds you the characters are speaking another language by using words here and there in that language that the reader would know. For example, here it's oui, non, mon dieu, ...more
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
This was my first historical fiction novel and I'm not too much a fan of romance, but this book was amazing. The French included in this book was easily understood and the character growth was on point. I found that I was cheering for the couple as the story continued and when the characters felt sad or unhappy I felt the same way. I have always wondered what it was like to have some of the experiences that people had in the past and I was thrilled that the experience was immersive. I would cert ...more
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
Interesting time period, the french revolution! But I thought the main character Célie was pretty annoying and naïve... So dependent of others. I also thought the writing was a little repetitive at times.
Nov 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I liked it. It’s interesting and a page-turner. Even though there were some gruesome scenes, I know it’s necessary to tell of the horrors of war. My eldest daughter, who’s 11, also liked it. She may have learned a little French.
Jul 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 out of 5 stars.
I loved this book and the main character was very well written. The love interest and overall plot wrapped this story together. After finishing it, I teared up. This book is beautiful.
Kelly PT
Mar 21, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2020
I hated Algernon. Toxic warning.

The twist at the end was a little bit WTF, like suddlenly he is good?

Linda Hepworth
Jul 28, 2015 rated it liked it
This story is set in France just before, and during, the French Revolution. Célie was fifteen when her father was shot by men employed by Comte de Artois (the king’s brother) because he was unable to pay the iniquitous taxes demanded. When her mother and younger brother die of starvation six months later, Célie is evicted from the only home she has ever known. Having no relatives or friends to turn to, she decides to head for Paris to join with those who are determined to change the plight of th ...more
Aug 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
I realized while reading this book that ive totally missed out in reading historical fiction centered around the French Revolution. Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice or MTA (which is what I will now refer to it as because its easier) is set in the midst of the French Revolution and its beautiful. I kind of feel like I was sneakily taught a few things about the Revolution and I love that!

Celie is living on the streets and has for sometime now. She has since her parents died. One for chasing a chicken a
Melani Cruz
Madame Tussaud's Apprentice, written by Kathleen Benner Duble, Is a story set in 1789 and throughout the french revolution. Celie(the main character) is very brave. Like when she stood up against the guards(sergents) when she wouldn't tell them where the other thief was (pg.24). Celie is also very talented when it comes to drawing, when the lady (Manon) she started to draw what Manon and the guard thought was the other thief. They said it was so detailed (pg.28). Lastly Celie is very smart when ...more
Meghann (Becoming Books)
My love/hate affair with historical fiction...
I've always struggled with historical fiction so I have to admit when I got this in the mail I was just ehh... but the cover staring at me day in and day out eventually won me over. With the French Revolution in its infancy, Celie and Algernon seek rebellion with the commoners against the French monarchy. Similar to the tune of classical literature during the same time period Madame Tussaud's Apprentice struggles to take off in the first half of the
Sep 10, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice was an interesting read and I liked the way the fictional story and real events were weaved together.

I have to admit, I don’t know a lot about the French Revolution, but the author’s note at the end of the book was very informative and gave insight into a lot of what happened in the book. I did a bit of Wiki-ing after finishing the book, and it’s clear that the author toned down things a bit and changed up some stuff to make things easier to read. I was fine with
Miranda Lynn
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars

When I received Madame Tussaud's Apprentice in the mail, I was really excited. I absolutely love historical fiction and I've never read anything about this time period before. I've been to the New York City Madame Tussaud's a few times and have always thought it was really cool, so I couldn't wait to read a story about this famous and intriguing character. And look at that cover!! Gorgeous.

Ultimately, the book ended up being not as great as I'd hoped it was going to be. I was looking fo
Carrie Mansfield
Jul 05, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, young-adult, history
Copy of eARC provided by the publisher in exchange for fair review.

Review will be available on my blog: Fantasy Findings

When it comes to historical fiction of any stripe there's a very real danger that all authors face: that they will inscribe modern mores and beliefs on characters who likely would not hold them if they were true to the time period. I believe that Benner Duble has fallen into this trap.

Celie is a illiterate peasant girl. Her father was killed by a noble-man for trespassing on hi
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Kathleen Benner Duble had sixteen car accidents before she was twenty-one. Being an at-home writer keeps her from hitting the road (or anyone else)! She is the author of eight books for children. Kathleen loves digging for unique historical fiction plotlines and encouraging students and lovers of books to look for great stories right in their own backyard!

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