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The Ambassador's Daughter by Pam Jenoff
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The Ambassador's Daughter

by Pam Jenoff

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11610159,084 (3.18)6

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Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
Blackmail and betrayals, romance and guilt, they all play a part in this story. This book is a prequel to The Kommandant's Girl and The Diplomat's Wife. It’s 1919 and twenty-year-old, Margot is staying in Paris with her father, an ambassador working for the German government on the Treaty of Versailles. She is bored and lonely, until she makes friends with Krysia, a mysterious musician. Margot inadvertently repeats secret information putting her father’s reputation in jeopardy. George Richwalder, a handsome naval officer, also working for the German government, offers her work as a translator and Margot can't help being attracted to the emotionally damaged, but charismatic officer. She begins to question her feelings for her fiance, Stefan, a soldier slowly recovering from his catastrophic wounds back home. Her father expects her to want to return to Germany to marry Stefan, but Margot keeps prolonging her return as best she can.

I think, because Margot felt so young and naive to me most of the time, I found her relationship with Georg Richwalder, an older man, fairly unrealistic and a bit strange at times. If Margot was mature with a characteristics that made her feel older than her twenty years, it might have been a bit more plausible, but this was not the case. I'm a bit unsure as to why the older Richwalder would be interested in someone who is portrayed as still a child.

I'd categorize this novel as historical fiction with strong romance elements. I'm not a huge romance fan but I found the history and politics of the time interesting and the romance a bit melodramatic. I can't say for sure that everything in the novel is historically accurate, but it felt realistic to me. I do recommend that you read this book if you intend to read The Kommandant's Girl, as there are spoilers in it regarding the history of these characters. I do think The Kommandant's Girl is a much better book and readers can skip this one if they choose.
( )
  Olivermagnus | Jan 17, 2016 |
What a great book! This is said to be a prequel, and just happens to be my 1st Pam Jenoff read, so I am looking forward to continuing with the series. This is definitely a love story, however, it is wrapped around historical events following World War One, that make this such a great read. Great mix of history, espionage, politics and of course the love story. Well developed characters that come alive on each page. Never a dull moment, unpredictable, a real page turner. Loved it! ( )
  booklovers2 | Sep 2, 2014 |
I really appreciated how the author set this novel in the aftermath of World War One. It has been several months since I read the Kommandant's girl, and I was shocked when I realized that the main love interest will become the Kommandant in the first novel. When I realized that, I remembered what would happen to the main character of this novel, and it did make me a bit sad. Reading this did make me more sympathetic towards the Kommandant's character in the next book. The characters were good and well written. I would certainly recommend this to anyone with an interest in history. Reading this would make me even more likely to recommend the Kommmandant's Girl to anyone. I would recommend reading this first, because I was honestly sad to realize that pretty much every major character in this will be dead by the end of the next book. ( )
  LISandKL | Jul 7, 2014 |
It is 1919. Margot Rosenthal is 20 years old and in Paris accompanying her father, a German diplomat, who is attending the peace conference following the Great War. Margot is a reluctant visitor – she feels distrusted by the allies for being a German and distrusted by the Germans for being a Jew.

Margot is engaged to Stefan who she has known since their schooldays. It was an impulsive engagement and one which she may be regretting. Stefan was about to go to war and Margot accepted his marriage proposal without thinking about the consequences too much. When Stefan returns at the end of the war he is badly injured and Margot is torn between her feelings for Stefan and her desire for independence.

With her father concentrating on the conference, Margot is left to her own devices and is bored. Her ensuing friendship with Krysia, a young Polish musician who has secrets of her own, brings her into contact with some shady characters and the story then leads to blackmail and espionage. Margot finds herself having to make some very difficult decisions, not least because she has met Georg, a young German soldier who is also part of the delegation and brings into question her feelings for Stefan. Margo is helping Georg with some translation work for the conference and finds herself increasingly drawn to him.

This is more than just a romance story and I found it an interesting and compelling read. I didn’t really know much about the Treaty of Versailles and after reading this book, I was interested enough to look into it further. There were occasions when the dialogue seemed out of place for the period but this didn’t affect my overall enjoyment. The atmosphere of post-war Paris was well described and the characters were believable and engaging. There are secrets and twists throughout the book and it was interesting to see Margo’s character mature as the story neared its conclusion.

My thanks to Newbooks Magazine for the review copy in exchange for an honest opinion. ( )
  Karen-uk | Nov 24, 2013 |
The much-degreed author allowed a manuscript to leave her desk containing errors in grammar, usage, and syntax.

The heroine is a slow learner and habitual liar. ( )
1 vote zcoot | Jun 7, 2013 |
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*Prologue* The sun has dropped low beneath the crumbling arches of Lehrter Bahnhof as I make my way across the station.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0778315096, Paperback)

Paris, 1919.

The world's leaders have gathered to rebuild from the ashes of the Great War. But for one woman, the City of Light harbors dark secrets and dangerous liaisons, for which many could pay dearly.

Brought to the peace conference by her father, a German diplomat, Margot Rosenthal initially resents being trapped in the congested French capital, where she is still looked upon as the enemy. But as she contemplates returning to Berlin and a life with Stefan, the wounded fiancé she hardly knows anymore, she decides that being in Paris is not so bad after all.

Bored and torn between duty and the desire to be free, Margot strikes up unlikely alliances: with Krysia, an accomplished musician with radical acquaintances and a secret to protect; and with Georg, the handsome, damaged naval officer who gives Margot a job—and also a reason to question everything she thought she knew about where her true loyalties should lie.

Against the backdrop of one of the most significant events of the century, a delicate web of lies obscures the line between the casualties of war and of the heart, making trust a luxury that no one can afford.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:08 -0400)

"Paris, 1919. The world's leaders have gathered to rebuild from the ashes of the Great War. But for one woman, the City of Light harbors dark secrets and dangerous liaisons, for which many could pay dearly. Brought to the peace conference by her father, a German diplomat, Margot Rosenthal initially resents being trapped in the congested French capital, where she is still looked upon as the enemy. But as she contemplates returning to Berlin and a life with Stefan, the wounded fiancé she hardly knows anymore, she decides that being in Paris is not so bad after all. Bored and torn between duty and the desire to be free, Margot strikes up unlikely alliances: with Krysia, an accomplished musician with radical acquaintances and a secret to protect; and with Georg, the handsome, damaged naval officer who gives Margot a job--and also a reason to question everything she thought she knew about where her true loyalties should lie. Against the backdrop of one of the most significant events of the century, a delicate web of lies obscures the line between the casualties of war and of the heart, making trust a luxury that no one can afford."--from cover, p. [4]… (more)

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