Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment” as Want to Read:
The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment

by
3.63  ·  Rating details ·  56 ratings  ·  34 reviews
A lover in and of the darkness ...
Violaine, a devotee of books and learning, is sold by her father to a mysterious nobleman to become his companion. Fearing herself at the mercy of a monster, Violaine instead succumbs to the seductive spell of her magical new home, and the love of a man she has never seen, who comes to her only in the darkness of night.
The Château de Bois
...more
Paperback, 266 pages
Published February 4th 2020 by D. X. Varos, Ltd.
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.63  · 
Rating details
 ·  56 ratings  ·  34 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment
Dan
Dec 22, 2019 rated it liked it
My rating for this is actually in the 3.5 to 3.75 range. When evaluating that rating, keep in mind that my average rating over almost 900 books is 3.01.

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher at the author's request. The scheduled release date is February 4, 2020.

I remember watching Disney's Beauty and the Beast countless times with my kids when they were much younger, so it's not surprising that the beginning of The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment would seem very famili
...more
Nenia ✨️ Socially Awkward Trash Panda ✨️ Campbell
Is this a Beauty and the Beast retelling?

Also I'm such a sucker for captivity romances LOL
...more
Jason Pettus
Nov 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Back when I was writing book reviews for a living, I found myself rather charmed by Therese Doucet's 2011 debut novel, the semi-autobiographical "reformed Mormon finally learns about the big wide world" tale A Lost Argument (see my review); so I was pleased a few weeks ago to accept a review copy of her latest, The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment by the brand-new genre small press DX Varos, despite the fact that it's a style of story I usually don't read by choice for pleasure. I was und ...more
Marquise
In all my years reading fairy tale retellings, this is the first one I find set in Enlightenment France, the time and place in which the original fairy tale was written, as well as the first that has a character at least partially inspired by the author of Beauty and the Beast. Delightful surprise!

The story is about Violaine Bergeret, a young Savoyard widow from a mountain village settled by members of a heretic sect called the Vaudois, formerly fiercely persecuted and currently protected by the
...more
Sara Snarr
Jan 02, 2020 rated it liked it
Doucet is a gifted story teller. She pulls the reader swiftly along on this retelling of Beauty and the Beast, especially in the second half as things start to unravel. She sets her tale in 17th century Savoy among attendees of the Parisian philosophical salons which introduces interesting new twists to an old tale. I wanted to give this new novelist's book four stars--she is clearly an amazing writer and her creativity provided much to think about. I particularly enjoyed her setting--the hidden ...more
Michael Austin
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2020
The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment is a remarkable work of fiction that manages to be a number of things at once: it is (among many other things) a variation on a popular fairy tale, a novel of manners, a good adventure story, and a philosophical tale. And it takes place in a well-researched historical setting with an environment, and a society, that the author holds with obvious esteem and affection.

Let’s unpack all of this a little bit, keeping nasty spoilers to a minimum.

The novel b
...more
Ella
This is a retelling of the well-known "Beauty and the Beast" intended for a mature audience. The main character, Violaine, is a widow who is forced to live in a magical castle as the companion of a mysterious Marquis because her father needs the money the Marquis has promised in exchange. The story takes place in France during the age of the enlightenment and is told in first person, from Violaine's point of view.

Violaine is a feminist of her own time, a free thinker like the friends she make du
...more
Philip Shade
Feb 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Magic, faeries, monsters, religious liberty, philosophy, history, and bodice ripping passion, all in the same novel. The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment is siren of a book in which every development tempts sand pulls the reader further into the struggles, passions, and achievements of its protagonist Violane.

This historically set fiction is vividly inspired by a range of classic faerie tales, legends, and myths and historical persons. As with Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber author Th
...more
Therese
Author's note - The first chapter of the novel was featured as an excerpt in Embark Literary Journal. It's available here.

Advance praise:

"Political, social, and psychological insights accompany Violaine's journeys to keep readers immersed in a story that defies easy categorization. From romance and fairy tale allusions to historical and philosophical foundations, The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment may best be described as a surreal journey through the changing, challenging world of the
...more
rayne ♥ [ IG: rayne.reads ]
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

instagram | blog |goodreads
...more
Barbara
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Violaine is a young widow, who had been in a loveless marriage; is sold by her father to a wealthy Marquis in order to become his mistress. She has to leave her two young children behind and is taken to The Chateau de Boisaulne, quite a distance away from the home she grew up in. She is terrified and concerned that her father has sold her to a monster of a man; but doesn't meet him right away upon her arrival. She has the opportunity to explore the beautiful, magical and mystical Chateau and its ...more
Steven Peck
Jun 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Doucet’s The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment is the best book of fiction I read this year. And I read a lot of fiction. I devoured it over a few days. On those evenings, I was carried away to a world so richly imagined that I felt like I knew the place.

Doucet’s setting in France is vibrant with exquisite details. The descriptions leave you with the feel and familiarity that these are people you know and care about—almost as if it’s a life you’ve lived at another time—The story is embedd
...more
melanie
Apr 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Giving this 4 stars because this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling which manages to stay within a certain fairy tale vibe but feels fresh by having older characters who’ve lived a little bit before the story starts, in a well-established world. There are discussions of philosophy and sex (Most romance novels are more explicit if that’s not your bag) which was fun and also horny.

Some of the twists were a bit telegraphed given the usual conventions of like. The Romance Genre(tm). But this is als
...more
Happy Booker
Apr 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
The prisoner of the castle of enlightenment is an adult fantasy story that begins as a retelling of Beauty and the Beast but takes a very different turn as it is set in late 18th century France.


The author sets the story with excellent adventure and a good variation of favourable fairy tale content. She kept the historical facts relatable and built the society in a natural yet fictional way.



The literature was described very well. Violaine has a fascinating character. She is just as strong yet ha
...more
Lorran Garrison
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Ever wonder what Belle in Beauty and the Beast would be like in an adult-themed story? Not a cartoon, but a woman, with needs and desires?

The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment by Therese Doucet is the tale of Violaine twenty-seven, widowed, and mother of two near Vaud, Switzerland, in the Age of Enlightenment. She loses the bookshop that her and her late husband owned, sold by her father to a mysterious Marquis.

The Marquis finds a beloved book by Violaine, filled with poems written by he
...more
Rhianna
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
OMGGG

I have FALLEN in love with this book, OVER, and OVER again! I am just madly in love OMG. I can't even think right now, that's how in love I am. I'm going to have to revisit this review in the near future to touch up, and give an actual review. But for now, I am going to sit here and wait for my very own Marquis, to come and rescue me.



*Thank you Therese and her publisher for being ever so kind, as to send me a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*
...more
Raven  Prophet
Jan 28, 2020 marked it as to-read
Cupid and Psyche Retelling?
Ekaiserattoe
Feb 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book! Intelligent and very, very entertaining. Can’t wait for a sequel!!
Rosa
Jun 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Review will be published on Independent Book Review shortly!
Steven Peck
Jun 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Doucet’s The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment is the best book of fiction I read this year. And I read a lot of fiction. I devoured it over a few days. On those evenings, I was carried away to a world so richly imagined that I felt like I knew the place.

Doucet’s setting in France is vibrant with exquisite details. The descriptions leave you with the feel and familiarity that these are people you know and care about—almost as if it’s a life you’ve lived at another time—The story is embedd
...more
Veronica (Honey Roselea Reads)
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
[image error]
My Blog | My BookTube | My Book Club | Instagram | Twitter

~ 3.5 stars ~

I will be publishing a review on my blog on The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment.

The review will officially be live at 11 am CST on Dec 22, 2020. For now, here is a preview as to what the review will look like:

❀❀❀❀

Violaine, a widow and mother of two, lover of books, finds herself in a proposition. After she discovers that her father sold her to a marquise in Boisaulne, she must leave her son and daughter i
...more
Greg Fletcher
May 18, 2020 rated it liked it
First time reading Therese Doucet. I'll be honest-about half way in I thought this was going to be a re-make of Beauty and the Beast. I'm happy to admit I was wrong. I'll also admit there were times when I wanted to skip ahead to get to the good part. This is not because the author is just filling pages, it's because I know I'm being made to be patient. This drives me crazy, but it usually means the story is captivating. I won't ruin the ending.....but it's the kind I like. Give it a try. It's n ...more
Desi
Apr 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My best friend Mark mailed me his copy of the book. He knows that I love to read and that I would enjoy this one. It was an enchanting read, I felt as though I was Violaine and I felt her every emotion. I was so engrossed in the book that my husband had to take it from me so that I would go to bed. I finished it in three days. My dreams took me into the scenes in the book. It was a delightful read.
Jean
Jun 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you're looking for a fairy tale with exquisite imagery, well crafted dialog, fascinating characters, philosophy and a bit of magic all set in the 18th century french alps, then read this book. I looked forward to bedtime every night when I would read a bit more of this lovely story and then drift off to sleep thinking about castle Boisaulne and the friends, lovers and magic that Violaine found there. ...more
Erin Figueiredo
Feb 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Interesting Read!

This was definitely a very interesting story, more of an adult retelling of Beauty and the Beast. I was not sure if the story would grip me and keep me interested and entertained, but once I started reading it I couldn't put it down. The story has suspense, intrigue and lots of romance to keep you captivated and highly entertained. It was a great story.
...more
Natalie
Jan 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I wasnt sure if I would like this story when I started reading this but I was pleasantly surprised.

This is a retelling of my favourite Disney movie. Beauty and the beast.

It has the romance and the suspense and everything you want and need in a retelling.

Mark
Apr 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An excellent tale and perhaps allegory set in mid-18th Century Savoy, the French-Italian-Swiss borderlands. Shades of "Beauty and the Beast" and nods to the salon intelligentsia of the period, all wrapped up in a fun, fast-paced ride, with fascinating characters and fantasy. A thrill! ...more
D.X. Varos
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely exquisite period piece with just a hint of magic.
Rachel C.
Beauty and the Beast retelling with Age of Enlightenment principles, as promised on the tin.
Lami
Mar 10, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: skimmed-through
Just could not enjoy it at all... Not my thing, I guess
« previous 1 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Mortal Engines (The Hungry City Chronicles, #1)
  • One Taste of You
  • Wrong Side of Wright
  • Beach Lover: A sexy short story thriller with suspense, twists, turns, murder and mystery (Run, Girl, Run! Book 1)
  • Peer Gynt
  • The Pixie Fix
  • The Last Sister (Columbia River, #1)
  • Tales of the Sea Witch
  • Repo Virtual
  • Serotonin
  • Girl Eight (Mercy Harbor Thriller, #2)
  • Holly Banks Full of Angst (Village of Primm #1)
  • The Light Years
  • Radicals: Portraits of a Destructive Passion
  • Unexpected Lessons in Love
  • Luren
  • Deprivation
  • The Banished Prince (Their Dark King, #1)
See similar books…
103 followers
My historical novel with magical realist elements, "The Prisoner of the Castle of Enlightenment," was published by D.X. Varos in February 2020. I'm also the author of "A Lost Argument: A Latter-Day Novel," published through my own Strange Violin Editions micropress imprint in 2011.

My fiction and creative nonfiction have appeared in literary magazines including Embark, Hotel Amerika, and Bayou Mag
...more

News & Interviews

  Signed up for the 2021 Goodreads Reading Challenge and looking for tips on how to discover and read more books? We’ve got your back. (And if...
157 likes · 36 comments