Citadelby Kate Mosse
Combining the rugged action of Labyrinth with the haunting mystery of Sepulchre, #1 bestselling author Kate Mosse’s eagerly awaited Citadel is a mesmerizing World War II story of daring and courage, in which a group of determined women fighting for the French Resistance risk their lives to save their homeland . . . and protect astonishing/b>/b>/b>… See more details below
Combining the rugged action of Labyrinth with the haunting mystery of Sepulchre, #1 bestselling author Kate Mosse’s eagerly awaited Citadel is a mesmerizing World War II story of daring and courage, in which a group of determined women fighting for the French Resistance risk their lives to save their homeland . . . and protect astonishing secrets buried in time.
France, 1942. In Carcassonne, a colorful historic village nestled deep in the Pyrenees, a group of courageous women are engaged in a lethal battle. Like their ancestors who fought to protect their land from Northern invaders seven hundred years before, these members of the resistance—codenamed Citadel—fight to liberate their home from the Nazis.
But smuggling refugees over the mountains into neutral territory and sabotaging their German occupiers at every opportunity is only part of their mission. These women must also protect an ancient secret that, if discovered by their ruthless enemies, could change the course of history.
A superb blend of rugged action and haunting mystery, Citadel is a vivid and richly atmospheric story of love, faith, heroism, and danger—and a group of extraordinary women who dare the impossible to survive.
The final book of Mosse's Languedoc trilogy (Labyrinth and Sepulchre) is set in southern France against the backdrop of World War II. There is a large cast of strong females, including some returning characters as this installment has a parallel time line that overlaps some events from the previous books. Protagonist Sandrine, an orphaned teen living with her older sister, is rescued by resistance fighter Raoul. After Raoul is falsely implicated in a bombing, he and Sandrine must flee the region for their safety. The second story line involves a young monk who is tasked with hiding a regarded magical Codex from the church to preserve for future generations. By the 1940s, the Codex's guardian, Audric Baillard, is also being sought by opposition forces. VERDICT Very detailed and well researched, this dramatic finale is a compelling mix of romance and historical fiction that succeeds as an epic tale of mystery and adventure. Fans of the first two books of the trilogy will be satisfied. Recommended for historical fiction, fantasy fiction, and adventure/thriller enthusiasts. [See Prepub Alert, 9/16/13.]—Carolann Curry, Mercer Univ. Lib., Macon, GA
Raiders of the Lost Ark meets The Da Vinci Code, with lashings of Nazis and belles mademoiselles. Yes, it's improbable in the extreme that a medieval codex should figure high on the list of priorities of both the Gestapo and the French Resistance, but, well, the Nazis were an improbable bunch, and they actually had a noted medievalist on their payroll against the odds of turning up the Holy Grail or other mysteries of the ages. Improbability doesn't get in the way of Mosse's (Sepulchre, 2008, etc.) yarn, which, though very long, is full of rousing action and intelligent character development alike. Closing her Languedoc Trilogy, she turns in a tale that begins, gruesomely, with a retaliatory hanging and moves swiftly to a firefight and a grimly delivered piece of partisan justice—and that's within the space of just a few pages. Interwoven in the tale of the doings of a girl gang of Resistance fighters in Vichy, France, code-named Citadel, are spectral events from another time, about which a curious fellow named Audric Baillard seems to know altogether too much. Tough-as-nails Marianne Vidal is one of the fiercest of the fighters; her sister Sandrine joins her as soon as she's old enough to get a driver's license. The sisters are of an ancient clan (" ‘Names are important,' Baillard said brightly"), and both are attuned to the things that go bump in the night. But can both outlast the SS thugs who are tearing around Carcassonne? Mosse slips a millennium and a half and more into the past to introduce an ancient heretical document, the Languedoc being a place notably receptive to heretical ideas, the discovery and mastery of which will allow its holder to conjure up an ancient ghost army ("You want them safely in the earth, don't you, Audric?")—not at all a bad thing to have if you're out for world conquest, that. The bad guys are bad, a local collaborationist particularly so; the ghouls are ghastly; the Nazis, determinedly Teutonic; and the filles de France, fetching. Suspend disbelief and enjoy the time travel and genre-blending.
- HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- Large Print
- Product dimensions:
- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 2.05(d)
Meet the Author
Kate Mosse has written nonfiction, plays, short stories and six novels, including the international bestseller Labyrinth. The cofounder of the prestigious Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction (formerly the Orange Prize), she is a campaigner to save independent bookshops and libraries in the U.K. A regular presenter for BBC radio and television, she won the Spirit of Everywoman award and was awarded an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to literature. She lives with her family in England and France.
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Unforgettable portrayal of strong young French women during the Resistance. This is actually the third volume of the Languedoc Trilogy, but I never had the sense I was missing on something because I had not read the first two volumes -which of course now I want to read! The German occupation is still very much ingrained in the French national consciousness, and the Resistance is certainly one of the most heroic pages of French history. I have heard many stories about it, from my family and friends, and read many books. This one is unique in the sense that it focuses on an all female Resistance network! As you will read in the interview part of the France Book Tour, when Kate bought a house in Carcassonne, she realized many streets were named after Resistance fighters, and many had died the same day. Also, a memorial mentions two unknown women. She wrote this historical novel trying to imagine what happened in that day and who these women could have been. All the aspects of the Resistance are present, including all the activities organized by the underground networks, the camps, the informers, betrayals, and yes a few tough pages on torture. I enjoyed a lot that this historical novel is at the same time a thriller centered on a very old secret Codex, with even some elements of fantasy and romance. There is a strong connection with Arsinius, living in the 4th century, at the key period for Christianity, when some texts were considered heretical. I won’t give away any detail about what the connection is between these two periods, but it certainly enriched considerably the story. It also highlighted the pseudo-scientific aspect of German’s search of the Aryan race, through its Ahnenerbe, which I really didn’t know anything about. The characters are so very alive. The character development of Sandrine especially, is really remarkable. From a teen just preoccupied in trying to keep life as bearable as possible during this war time, she discovers the real world is far more complicated. She evolves into a very powerful woman, determined to do all she can and sacrifice everything to allow her country to regain its freedom. Even though the outcome is really tough, I think what Kate did with her characters only makes sense and is very realistic. I also liked what the author did with a couple of characters collaborating with the Gestapo, having really in mind only their own interests, sometimes hidden behind some almost decent motives. I also appreciated the wisdom figure of Baillard. The setting of Carcassonne, with its powerful ramparts still visible today, is very well rendered. The episode of the Resistance is one among the many invasions the region had to face, and this is also very well conveyed. One can see how much the author is knowledgeable about the area. I could smell the wonderful scents of the countryside there, with the thyme and rosemary. I would love now to join her and visit the place and the surrounding mountains and caves with her as guide! Before that, we can do the tour on her website! VERDICT: Citadel is the unforgettable portrayal of strong young French women during the Resistance, fighting for freedom. It is a must for all lovers of historical fiction, mystery, and WWII novels. Sandrine and her companions will remain with you, and may even inspire you.
A riveting read! I really enjoyed this. A good insight into wartime resistance in occupied France. The depiction of the brave women of the Citadel network really makes them, and the dangers they face, come alive. The descriptions of Carcassonne made me want to visit. Superb! I received a free copy in return for an honest review
Initially I was very excited to see another novel by Kate Mosse set in the Lanquedoc region of France. The book started out on a high note and, unfortunately, steamrolled downhill fast. The book went on a little too long about 200 pages too long. The end was a great disappointment.
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this latest Kate Mosse novel. While a bit lengthy, it is well worth the effort to read. The strong character development paired with an outstanding writing style keep the reader interested throughout the novel. I love how you can learn so much of the rich history of the French Resistance Movement without becoming bogged down in preachy, dry details. It really doesn't come across as the "textbook" version. I was a bit put off at first because of the large number of pages because I tend to like switching stories after about 300 or so pages so I don't get bored. In the end, I actually hated for the story to end. I was, however, incredibly inspired by the climax and the end. I am sure you will see what I mean when you read it. Stepanek Clanahan
I wanted to love this book, but I didn't. It was good, but just fell a little short of the mark to keep me enthralled.