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Archive: Other Books > Abundance by Sena Jeter Nasland - 4.5 stars

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message 1: by Amy (new) - rated it 4 stars

Amy | 9388 comments 4.5 stars for the sweeping epic life story of Marie Antoinette, so beautifully told by Sena Jeter Naslund. I just loved this. For lovers of historical fiction, Sena is a beautiful writer. I hadn't known much at all about Marie Antoinette, but wasn't she a wonderful character? One can really see her inner mind, as these events were forming around her. She became queen at 14 years old. The book opens with this wonderful image of how the ceremony begins on an island between the two countries, where one literally steps out of Austrian fashion, naked, into new clothes, a new name, and into a new country, into royalty. Thus begins a 14 year olds journey, where she becomes Marie Antoinette, devoted to her new country and new people, leaving the country and family of her birth.

I never knew about the affair with the necklace, that appears to have many books written about that unfortunate time in history. The main point, is to illustrate that the French were growing exceedingly uncomfortable about their economy, and the citizens were starving, while the Royal court appeared to have great excess. This account depicts both Louis and Marie as trying to respond adequately and thoughtfully to the needs of the country, while unrest and anger and revolutionaries spoke out against the monarchy. In this rendition, the royals did everything they could to work with the needs of a quickly changing country, while the people felt more and more unrest, and increasing rage and disloyalty. The necklace seemed to be a whole part of that story. In the end, Louis and Marie both met an untimely end, due to the fervor growing in the country. Even then, they were loving patriots, and cared deeply for their citizens.

Marie loved her husband, and showed great loyalty to him, but she also developed another great love later in her young life, who was a male best friend. He was a confidant, soulmate, and twin. In this rendering, nothing untoward happens with this man, who was a favorite and good friend to both the couple at the court. But of course, this friendship is depicted horribly from the eyes of the constituency. Or at least that she ran around gaily, while others starved. It was a pure friendship, but a deep love nonetheless. How refreshing to remember a time, when one can have a pure deep love in their lives, with no need to act on it and to destroy the life one's built. But to have it in one's life as a fulfilling dimension. I think that would be rare to exist these days, and I thought it was just lovely.

message 2: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tstan) | 1238 comments Great review! This sounds good- on the list it goes.
FYI: You're hard on my TBR!

message 3: by Magdalena (new) - added it

Magdalena | 414 comments Really wonderful review! I've had this on my tbr for a little while. Glad to hear you say such good things about it!

message 4: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 6407 comments Okay ... another one on the TBR mountain!

message 5: by Amy (new) - rated it 4 stars

Amy | 9388 comments Just saying - I love the circles I run in!

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