Kicked out of the convent at seventeen, Jeanne Du Bois, the heroine of Morin's uneven historical, returns to Louis XIV's court only to rebel against her father's plans to marry her off to a fop. With training and a false moustache provided by a sympathetic uncle, Jeanne disguises herself as Jean-Luc, a gifted swordsman who fights alongside musketeers Henri and Antoine. She leads a tricky double life, particularly when, dressed as Jeanne, she wins Henri's heart and helps him uncover a threat to the queen. Morin fills her tale with maidens, mistresses and musketeers mired in intrigue, but her attempts to heighten dramatic intensity prove artificial: Jeanne's father is not only tyrannical, he's abusive; royal mistresses are not only conniving, they're murderous; and Jeanne's visit to a courtesan for advice seems particularly contrived. The novice novelist makes up for such simplistic technique by supplying lots of action, as Jeanne goes through quick costume changes, one minute a voluptuous virgin about to be raped, another a daring do-gooder, rapier in hand. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
The Courtier's Secretby Donna Russo Morin
France, 1680. Louis XIV, the Sun King, is at the height of his power. The court at Versailles is a paradise for privileged young women. Jeanne Yvette Mas Du Bois is unlike most other courtiers. Her thirst for knowledge often incurs her father's brutal wrath. But her uncle encourages Jeanne's independence, secretly teaching her fencing in the palace's labyrinthine… See more details below
France, 1680. Louis XIV, the Sun King, is at the height of his power. The court at Versailles is a paradise for privileged young women. Jeanne Yvette Mas Du Bois is unlike most other courtiers. Her thirst for knowledge often incurs her father's brutal wrath. But her uncle encourages Jeanne's independence, secretly teaching her fencing in the palace's labyrinthine basement. . .
When two of the king's Musketeers are beset by criminals who are mere feet from Jeanne's fencing lesson, she intervenes, saving one of the Musketeers' lives. Hidden behind her mask, Jeanne is mistaken for a man. As "Jean Luc," Jeanne is admitted to an inner circle where she learns of an assassination plot against the Queen. As Jean Luc, she is permitted to bring her intelligence and swordsmanship to bear. And as Jean Luc, she is free to love the man of her choosing. . .even if she can never have him. Now, with the Queen in jeopardy, and her own double life making her privy to the tangled intrigues at court, Jeanne is in a powerful--yet increasingly perilous--position.
Brimming with lush period detail and vivid, unforgettable characters, The Courtier's Secret takes readers into a fascinating, intriguing world of pageantry, adventure, betrayals, and secrets.
"Exquisitely done. . .fabulous. . .unforgettable characters." --Marilyn Rondeau
"Compelling. . .brings vividly to life the constrained life of the noble Frenchwoman." --Allie Bates, author of Earthchild
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