Before Versailles: A Novel of Louis XIV

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9781441789891: Before Versailles: A Novel of Louis XIV

New York Times bestselling author Karleen Koen offers another delightful historical novel that will transport you to another time and place.

Before Versailles is the luscious, sweeping story of the young Louis XIV in his first year as king of France. Told in the alternating perspectives of the young king and his first love, the woman who would become his mistress, Karleen Koen's newest weaves a portrait of court and country in turmoil with the legends of this colorful period in history, including that of the mysterious man in the iron mask.

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Guest Reviewer: Jean M. Auel on Before Versailles

Jean M. Auel is an international phenomenon. Her Earth's Children® series has sold more than 45 million copies worldwide and includes The Clan of the Cave Bear, The Valley of Horses, The Mammoth Hunters, The Plains of Passage, The Shelters of Stone, and The Land of Painted Caves. Her extensive research has earned her the respect of archaeologists and anthropologists around the world. She has honorary degrees from four universities and was honored by the French government's Ministry of Culture with the medal of an "Officer in the Order of Arts and Letters." She lives with her husband, Ray, in Oregon.

I’ve enjoyed Karleen Koen’s writing since I first read Through a Glass Darkly many years ago, so I was delighted to have the chance to read her latest, Before Versailles. Louis XIV is a fascinating monarch and Koen has rendered him perfectly in these pages: he’s smart, dashing, cunning, manipulative--everything one expects from a King, even one as young as twenty-two. Koen has wisely chosen a few months in 1661 during the early reign of Louis in which to tell this story; these are perhaps the most decisive months of his monarchy and she shows opposing forces pulling him in many directions as he makes his decisions, as well as his reasons for making them. I was intrigued by the lives of the women closest to him: Louise de la Baume le Blanc, the young beauty who is just learning the ways of the court when she is seduced by the King, and the gorgeous Princess Henriette, Louis’s brother’s wife who loves the taste of danger and isn’t above flirting (perhaps a bit too much!) with the receptive King. I loved reading about Louis’s mother--the lover of Louis’s former advisor Cardinal Mazarin--a profound influence in his political decisions. Karleen Koen leaves us wondering if she can be trusted? Koen also dramatically weaves in a scary and mysterious subplot involving a boy in an iron mask, a poor child who could ruin everything for the young and virile King.

Lush descriptions jump off the page and into the imagination and by the time you’ve finished, you’ll feel you’ve lived a few intimate months with these vivid characters. If you’ve not yet visited the chateau de Fontainebleau or seen the magnificent gardens of Versailles you’ll be planning your own tour de France soon after reading the last page, inspired by Karleen Koen's fascinating research and intriguing exploration of the young Louis and his entourage. I strongly encourage you to read Koen’s latest, Before Versailles.

Vive la France!

Jean M. Auel

About the Author:

KARLEEN KOEN is the New York Times bestselling author of Through a Glass Darkly, of which two million copies have been sold in the US alone. It was on the New York Times bestseller list for five consecutive months. She is also the author of its sequel, Now Face to Face, and its prequel, Dark Angels, a BookSense pick. She lives in Houston, Texas.

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Koen, Karleen
Published by Blackstone Audio Inc (2011)
ISBN 10: 1441789898 ISBN 13: 9781441789891
New Quantity Available: 1
Revaluation Books
(Exeter, United Kingdom)

Book Description Blackstone Audio Inc, 2011. Compact Disc. Book Condition: Brand New. unabridged edition. 6.25x5.75x1.50 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # 1441789898

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