The Game of Hope
Paris, 1798. Hortense de Beauharnais is engrossed in her studies at a boarding school for aristocratic girls, most of whom suffered tragic losses during the tumultuous days of the French Revolution. She loves to play and compose music, read and paint, and daydream about Christophe, her brother's dashing fell ...more
I am a huge Sandra Gulland fan. Her Josephine B. (Bonaparte) trilogy books are some of my favorite historical fiction works. I was thrilled that she would be taking on Josephine’s daughter’s story in The Game of Hope.
Hortense’s story is classified as young adult but is suitable for adults, too. Beginning four short years after the Terror of the French Revolution, Hortense is enrolled in a boarding school. She is talented with mu ...more
It was an okay read but nothing more beyond that. The story barely graded on events going on at the time and instead mainly focused on the character of Hortense. This is understandable as she is the main character and the novel is marketed being about her story.
However, I found she was somewhat of a boring and bland character. Adding on to that, she did not come across as being a teenager and seemed to be more relatabl ...more
When the story opens in 1798, Hortense de Beauharnais, whose father was guillotined during the last days of the Terror in France, is 15. Josephine, her notorious mother, is married to Napoleon Bonaparte, who is in Egypt leading the French army, and Hortense lives at a boarding school for aristocratic girls, nursing her talents, her sorrows and her secrets passions.
Sandra Gulland returns to th ...more
It’s fascinating to see the events surrounding Napoleon Bonaparte and his leadership, as well as the aftermath of the French Revolution, through the eyes of his teenage stepdaughter. I love how Ms. Gulland portrays the family and their relationshi ...more
DNF @ page 133 - 2 stars
The Game of Hope is a YA historical fiction novel that follows Hortense de Beauharnais, Napoleon's step-daughter. Honestly, I have no clue what the plot of this novel is because the 133 pages I read were a hodgepodge of girl drama, sordid family dealings, and music. It was all very boring and I'm quite sad because I thought this was going to be a novel I would love. I do enjoy historical fiction re-imaginings and I had high expectations f...more
"Sandra Gulland demonstrates a masterful grasp that she has on history in her book The Game of Hope .... Gulland ... has no problem displaying her understanding of post-revolution France and therefore invites her readers into a well-developed universe of Hortense de Beauharnais.
This book is well written for younger audiences of teenage girls, connecting them to the past with common issues that all preteen girls face ...more
One of the pleasures of reading historical novels is that the best ones bring alive the past in a way no history book can. Game of Hope is such a book.
Hortense Beauharnais, age 15, is the daughter of Josephine Bonaparte and step-daughter of Napoleon.
Hortense is a student at a lovely girls’ boarding school outside of Paris, near her mother’s estate Malmaison. A serious, bookish, musical girl, rather prim, plain and straight laced in a school that encourages scholar ...more
This is the first time reading anything about Hortense and I quite enjoyed it. To get glimpses of the final years of the Revolution, though the eyes of the young, added that extra emotional element, it wasn't hard to feel empathy for what they went through. The scars left were not always the physical ones. Hortense didn’t ask to be stepdaughter of the famous Bonaparte but that w ...more
When the story opens, Napoleon is away in Egypt on c ...more
Currently I’m in the ‘I haven’t read any YA for months’ phase. So when this book came up for review, I was about to pass until I read the summary. I love Napoleon and the French Revolution and when I saw that this book was about Napoleon’s step daughter, Hortense, I was excited to read it….YA or not.
So I think what was ...more
“You grew up in a violent time,” she said...more
This was a quiet, slowly paced book that focuses on Hortense's life. It's a coming-of-age story of a girl struggling to deal with the after effects of The Terror and her unique family life, while still dealing with the normal struggles of teenage girls ...more
I was a beta reader and also received an ARC of the US edition. I love Sandra Gulland’s Josphine B. Trilogy, and although Game of Hope is geared towards a younger audience, I still enjoyed it. This is her first YA novel, so don’t go into it expecting it to be exactly the same as her other novels.
Hortense, Napoleon Bonaparte’s stepdaughter, has to navigate the society that her mother’s recent remarriage ...more
I wanted to like this book. I usually really enjoy historical fiction, but this book fell flat for me. I kind of feel like reading this book would be like reading Rob Kardashian's memoir if he was only famous because his mother married Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner. And I may have been more forgiving of the book if I'd remembered while reading it that it was based on Hortense's actual autobiography, bu ...more
I really thought this book ...more
This is an interesting story. I do not know that it is based on true events, but that is a new fact to me. I am in intermediate level of French, so I recognize some words that are included in the book. I like the cover because ...more
Sandra Gulland has done it again, drawing me in to the Napoleonic Age and making me fall in love with the colourful personalities of the era all over. Gulland has tackled the period before in her magnificent trilogy focusing on the life of Josephine Bonaparte, the mother of our heroine, Hortense. In this novel, teen-aged Hortense de Beauharnais takes center stage. Gulland renders her with charm, humour, and compl ...more
Ms. Gulland is a pro at avoiding a pit ...more
This book is well written for younger audiences of teenage girls, connecting them to the ...more
I very nearly judged this book by it's cover. And the cover I have is not even the final one. Shame on me. It came to me with several other ARCs and honestly if I had not read the author bio I might have set this one aside and missed out on this engrossing read. I really enjoyed Gulland's series on Josephine Bonaparte so I decided to give this one a try.
And I'm so glad I did. I very much identified with Hortense and found the characters engaging. I would say it would ...more
What this book did best was its historical accuracy. There was great detail, and obviously there's liberties taken to create the novel, but overall it remains quite true and keeps many facts accurate to history. Along with its accuracy, it was well-written and had many enjoyable ...more
I liked that while you learn about the time period politically and socially most of it is woven nicely into the story, it’s clear the author did her research yet she doesn’t burden the reader wit ...more
The Trilogy was followed by MISTRESS OF THE SUN and then THE SHADOW QUEEN, a "sister" novel. Both novels are set in the Court of Louis XIV, the Sun King.
THE GAME OF HOPE, a Young Adult novel about Josephine B ...more