“An intriguing romp through Louis XV’s France. Filled with lush backdrops, rich detail, and colorful characters, fans of historical fiction will enjoy this glimpse into the lost golden era of the French monarchy.” (Allison Pataki, author of The Accidental Empress)
“Tantalizing descriptions and cliff-hangers will leave the reader rapidly turning the pages in anticipation…A wickedly delightful read.” (New York Daily News)
Goodness, but sisters are a thing to fear.
Court intriguers are beginning to sense that young King Louis XV, after seven years of marriage, is tiring of his Polish wife. The race is on to find a mistress for the royal bed as various factions put their best feet—and women—forward. The King’s scheming ministers push sweet, naïve Louise, the eldest of the aristocratic Nesle sisters, into the arms of the King. Over the following decade, she and three of her younger sisters—ambitious Pauline; complacent Diane, and cunning Marie Anne—will conspire, betray, suffer, and triumph in a desperate fight for both love and power as each becomes the king’s favorite for a time.
In the tradition of The Other Boleyn Girl, The Sisters of Versailles is a clever, intelligent, and absorbing novel that historical fiction fans will devour. Based on meticulous research on a group of women never before written about in English, Sally Christie’s stunning debut is a complex exploration of power and sisterhood—of the admiration, competition, and even hatred that can coexist within a family when the stakes are high enough.
This is a time period that I am not very familiar with, and after listening to this on audio I have decided that I want to learn more. I am quite aware that this is a fictional story based on facts, but there are many aspects of this story that are true. Every time I see photos of people in King Louis XV’s day, France 1700s, they look so prim and proper in speech and attire, but scandalous just barely covers them.
In fact, it seems like a 1700s soap opera. Pauline is equivalent to any daytime drama villain of the current soaps. Can you imagine trying to become the mistress to the king after your sister had been the mistress of choice? Or how about the second sister mistress watching the next two sisters take to the king’s bed? It is so strange that it was acceptable for married women to have affairs with the king. Crazy!
If I had to choose a favorite sister, I would say mine would be Louise. She seemed like she actually cared for King Louis XV, and not just out for herself. There are alternating narratives so you are able to kind of get to know what each sister is like. I have to say that there were times I giggled like a little school girl at some of the things they said. Oh dear, I might have even blushed as I listened.
The Sisters of Versailles was a great listen, and even though the whole premise is just crazy it is crazy enough to make you keep reading. Or in my case listening.
FYI – I purchased this book and am under no obligation to the author or publisher to write this review. However, the links above are affiliate links and if you were to click on one of the links and purchase the book and/or audiobook, I might get a couple of pennies that go toward my blog costs. Thank you!