Monday, March 19, 2012

Great Books

I've just finished reading two great historical fictions Madame Tussaud:  A Novel of the French Revolution by Michelle Moran and Elizabeth I by Margaret George.

Before I began reading Madame Tussaud, all I knew was that she had a wax museum in London.  I wasn't particularly interested in her but I'm fascinated by the French Revolution so I decided to try it. I'm so glad I did.  It was amazing!

In the book, Madame Tussaud (Marie Grosholtz) is caught between the two worlds of the French Revolution.  While Marie tutors Madame Elizabeth, the sister of King Louis XVI, at Versailles, her family entertains revolutionaries like Robespierre in their salon.  She and her family must carefully balance their position until it is clear which side will prevail.    

Michelle Moran did an excellent job, seamlessly weaving the tragic events of the French Revolution with the story of Madame Tussaud's life.  I would highly recommend it!

Elizabeth I by Margaret George is an extensive work on the last years of the Virgin Queen's reign.  I've never been a fast reader so at 671 pages this one was a little difficult for me to get through.  But I finally finished yesterday and it was well worth it.

This book is written from the perspectives of both the Queen and her cousin and rival Lettice Knollys.  Lettice infuriates the Queen by marrying Robert Dudley, who is Elizabeth's favorite.  Lettice is banished from court but constantly finds ways to continue irritating her cousin.
Elizabeth has to deal with threats all around her.  The Spanish Armada is coming, Ireland is in rebellion and her beloved people begin to turn their opinion against her.  Can she turn the tide on all sides and keep her crown?
This is a fascinating look at the Queen's final years.  Margaret George brought the whole period to life with her exquisite attention to detail.   Highly recommended!

I can't even imagine how much research must have gone into both of these books!

I'd love to hear what you guys are reading!

Kathy :)


  1. *I cannot imagine the research either. I love reading historical fiction, but I'm not geared toward writing it. I'm reading The Smile by Donna Jo Napoli, and I'm loving it!

    1. I haven't heard of The Smile. I'll have to go check it out. :)

  2. Ummm, I feel so foolish admitting it, but I'm reading the Princess Diaries for the first time. I'm in my thirties carrying around a bright pink book and loving it. ::Blush::

    1. I think that's great! If you're enjoying it who cares what age it's written for! I loved the movie! :)

  3. That's what I've always admired about people who write historical fiction: the research. Don't get me wrong, I do research, but the amount that goes into historical fiction is more than I could bear. If a person is really fascinated by it, then maybe I could see it, but still, you have to be d-e-d-i-c-a-t-e-d.

  4. Hi Kathy: I'm Kathy too from the 4th Campaign. You've been chosen for the Sunshine Award. Hop on over and collect it at and pay it forward. It's a great way for us to get to know one another. Nice to meet you.