Title/Author: Confessions of Marie Antoinette (Marie Antoinette #3) by Juliet Grey
Publisher/Date published: Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine, September 24th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository
Goodreads summary: Confessions of Marie Antoinette, the riveting and sweeping final novel in Juliet Grey’s trilogy on the life of the legendary French queen, blends rich historical detail with searing drama, bringing to life the early years of the French Revolution and the doomed royal family’s final days.
Versailles, 1789. As the burgeoning rebellion reaches the palace gates, Marie Antoinette finds her privileged and peaceful life swiftly upended by violence. Once her loyal subjects, the people of France now seek to overthrow the crown, placing the heirs of the Bourbon dynasty in mortal peril.
Displaced to the Tuileries Palace in Paris, the royal family is propelled into the heart of the Revolution. There, despite a few staunch allies, they are surrounded by cunning spies and vicious enemies. Yet despite the political and personal threats against her, Marie Antoinette remains above all a devoted wife and mother, standing steadfastly by her husband, Louis XVI, and protecting their young son and daughter. And though the queen and her family try to flee, and she secretly attempts to arrange their rescue from the clutches of the Revolution, they cannot outrun the dangers encircling them, or escape their shocking fate.
Guys, I am so stoked to be part of this blogtour!! I don't nearly read enough historical fiction, though I pretty much always love it when I do and this series is one of the reasons why I'm a fan of the genre! We've all heard about Marie Antoinette, this historical figure who had a tragic ending and I love seeing the person behind such a historical character!
Juliet Grey has made her a lovable woman, a person I could truly care about and I love it when that happens! I mean, she's really gone from person of the past to flesh and blood and emotions and everything! Aside from her fashion choices, there's more to Marie Antoinette, she's a loving mother, lonely woman isolated from her homeland and dutiful wife. She's a woman who lost two of her children and grieves for them. She looks for love and comfort. And I found myself rooting for her, and this made it all the more heartbreaking to know how her story ends.
Confessions of Marie Antoinette is definitely a darker book than the first two in the series. The Revolution has started and things are looking more and more dire for Marie Antoinette and her family. The riots are starting and the people cry out for Marie Antoinette's head. There's slander going about and it's crazy what people will believe of a public figure! I mean, I get that people had no idea who their king and queen really were, but the lies told about Marie Antoinette are outrageous!
The sheer darkness of the atmosphere in this book made me struggle a bit to get into it, but once I devoted some time to really immerse myself in the story, it all went smoothly. Seeing the brutal scenes of the Revolution through both Marie Antoinette and a sculptress' eyes was a bit depressing. But mostly because I knew there wasn't any hope for the queen. She wouldn't see brighter days again and I so wanted that for her! But even in the middle of all this heartache, there are some beautiful moments that maybe even broke my heart a little more! There's the kindness of the queen's jailers and the child who blows a kiss to Marie Antoinette as she's being led to the guillotine (which I was delighted to discover actually happened!).
And while I did tear up at the ending, it was perfect and I love how it featured all the important people in Marie Antoinette's life. And I really liked that Juliet Grey put an addendum at the end where she tells us what happens to some of the figures in the novel who are still alive at its conclusion. I had been planning on googling some of them and this saved me the trouble! It's horrifying to be reminded of exactly how many people died during the Revolution and with what ease they were convicted and executed.
I have loved getting to know more about Marie Antoinette through this series and I will never forget the woman Juliet Grey made her be!
My rating: 4,5 stars
Made me crave: cappucino, with a brownie