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The Queen's Lover: A Novel by Francine du…
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The Queen's Lover: A Novel (edition 2012)

by Francine du Plessix Gray

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1599118,673 (3.08)3
"The Queen's Lover" reveals the untold love affair between Swedish aristocrat Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette.
Member:Jaylia3
Title:The Queen's Lover: A Novel
Authors:Francine du Plessix Gray
Info:Penguin Press HC, The (2012), Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:historical fiction, French Revolution, Marie Antoinette, Sweden

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The Queen's Lover by Francine du Plessix Gray

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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
As I dive further and further into the genre of Historical Fiction, I've realized something. The more you enjoy the historical period surrounding the story? The more you'll love the book. In fact, I picked up The Queen's Lover mainly because I am fascinated by Marie Antoinette and everything that happened in her time period. I'd not heard a lot about her affair with Count Axel von Ferson, other than that it was a possible occurrence. So I was intrigued to see where Francine Du Plessix Gray would take me, and what I would be shown.

The Queen's Lover reads as Count von Fersen's memoir, showing us his life through a long stream of letters and diary entries. There is quite a lot of his thoughts recorded here and I'll admit that it was rather fascinating. The one thing that threw me off almost instantly though, was that this is much more Count von Fersen's story, and not so much Marie Antoinette's. Out of the entire book there is maybe a third that actually mentions their relationship with one another. The rest is a very detailed look at his travels, and his (ahem) conquests.

One thing I can definitely say about Du Plessix Gray's writing, is that she isn't afraid to show Count von Fersen for who he really is. There is no sugar coating here. Presented is a man in his most raw form. He was married to a code of conduct that was not too well received at that time, and definitely would be frowned upon in today's society. As I mentioned above, there is a lot of information about his conquests, and obviously his opinion of women was that they were there to be bedded. Need I say more? It's tough to decide whether or not you are supposed to pity or despise this man. However it is true that his life is definitely not dull.

Although The Queen's Lover is the title, this story is a lot more about Count von Fersen as a man and not so much as Marie Antoinette's lover. That was the one thing that kept me from fully loving this story. Nonetheless, it is a fascinating look into the time period surrounding these characters and Du Plessix Gray goes to great lengths to fully immerse you in their world. If you are a fan of Historical Fiction, and particularly of Marie Antoinette's possible love affair, this is something you'll want to check out. ( )
  roses7184 | Feb 5, 2019 |
For a book with such a sexy title, the story of The Queen's Lover is oddly emotionally cold and not much of a love story at all. This book provides an amazingly flat portrayal of a tumultuous time in history. The minimalistic storyline failed to bring life to the people and events. Instead, this book was a linear compilation of historical facts that drags on and on. ( )
  bookishblond | Oct 24, 2018 |
I gave up after 109 pages because it was just too tedious. ( )
  bookhookgeek | Sep 7, 2018 |
Beautifully written but it simply didn't hold my interest. If you are really interested in the French revolution or 18th c. Sweden, this might be your book. If not, I don't think this is a gateway to further reading. ( )
  laurenbufferd | Nov 14, 2016 |
The story of a love affair between Marie Antoinette and Swedish aristocrat Axel von Fersen. The first half of the book is better than the second. During the second half, the reader is forced to read about the sordid details of the royal detention and deaths.

Serious Francophiles will enjoy the excerpts from the correspondence of the queen and Fersen. I found that and the descriptions of a filthy Versailles the best parts of the book. ( )
  susanamper | Sep 21, 2013 |
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