on Tour April 5-14 with
The Rivals of Versailles(historical fiction) Release date: April 5, 2016 at Atria Books/Simon & Schuster 448 pages ISBN: 978-1501102998
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In this scandalous follow-up to Sally Christie’s clever and absorbing debut, we meet none other than the Marquise de Pompadour, one of the greatest beauties of her generation and the first bourgeois mistress ever to grace the hallowed halls of Versailles. The year is 1745. Marie-Anne, the youngest of the infamous Nesle sisters and King Louis XV’s most beloved mistress, is gone, making room for the next Royal Favorite. Enter Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson, a stunningly beautiful girl from the middle classes. Fifteen years prior, a fortune teller had mapped out young Jeanne’s destiny: she would become the lover of a king and the most powerful woman in the land. Eventually connections, luck, and a little scheming pave her way to Versailles and into the King’s arms. All too soon, conniving politicians and hopeful beauties seek to replace the bourgeois interloper with a more suitable mistress. As Jeanne, now the Marquise de Pompadour, takes on her many rivals—including a lustful lady-in-waiting; a precocious fourteen-year-old prostitute, and even a cousin of the notorious Nesle sisters—she helps the king give himself over to a life of luxury and depravity. Around them, war rages, discontent grows, and France inches ever closer to the Revolution. Enigmatic beauty, social climber, actress, trendsetter, patron of the arts, spendthrift, whoremonger, friend, lover, foe. History books may say many things about the famous Marquise de Pompadour, but one thing is clear: for almost twenty years, she ruled France and the King’s heart.
I love very much historical novels, most of the ones I have read were set in England. I was happy to learn a bit of French history. This book was a very pleasant and interesting read.
The protagonist of this story is one of the most famous lovers in history and certainly one of the most influential in politics, Madame de Pompadour. She was the greatest love of Louis XV, she led for many years his choices and perhaps was the main cause of his downfall. He became king when he was only a child, was much loved by his people, but when he started collecting lovers his life had become very dissolute. And his people had stopped loving him. The book tells the life of Madame de Pompadour from childhood until her departure from Versailles. She was a beautiful and very charming woman, smart, resourceful, enterprising but had humble bourgeois origins. After a fortune teller predicted that she would become very important as a queen, her mother tried to give her the best education possible. She grew up among girls from higher social classes that had always derided and humiliated her but has served to learn her to fight. When she was able to attract the attention of the king would fight hard to stay at his side, she had many enemies who didn't consider her suitable to share a bed with a king.
The story is written really well, the author is very good at capturing the attention of the reader and to maintain it throughout the story. The pace is flowing, exciting, never boring. The setting is fabulous, we will move together with the protagonists in the beautiful rooms of the palace of Versailles. A reading really intriguing and interesting.
I love this series and I look forward to reading the third book. Although it is the second book can be read as stand alone but I recommended to read the first too, it is really intriguing, four sisters all lovers of Louis XV.
If you love historical romances and France this book is perfect for you but I would recommend it to everyone.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sally Christie is the author of The Sisters of Versailles. She was born in England and grew up around the world, attending eight schools in three different languages. She spent most of her career working in international development and currently lives in Toronto. Learn more about the sisters and the mistresses in the Versailles trilogy on her website Become a fan to hear about her next novels! Visit her Facebook Page Check her Pinterest page