If you’ve read Books & Tea longer than a minute, you will know two things:
- I’m worse than you at reading series. Unless you are a non-reader; then I suppose you are worse by default. (Seriously though. I’m really bad.)
- Despite my lack of follow through with book series, I’m obsessed with the Mistresses of Versailles series by Sally Christie. I devoured the Sisters of Versailles. I read the Enemies of Versailles with fervor. I was even inspired to make some Pain Au Chocolat for the mistresses!
To say I’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of the third and final installment almost feels like an understatement, and now it’s almost here. The Enemies of Versailles officially hits the shelves March 21, 2017. If you’re late to the Sally Christie bandwagon, or you’re not quite certain you really want to invest your time into a historical fiction series, hopefully I can change your mind.
Four Reasons Why You Should Drop What You’re Doing and Read the Mistresses of Versailles Series Right Now
- If you’re a reluctant reader of historical fiction, the Mistresses of Versailles will change your mind. I think historical fictions gets a bad wrap. It’s sometimes perceived as stuffy and dry, and perhaps this is because we can still recall how dull high school American History or World History classes were. Or, perhaps we’re intimidated by tomes full of information rich world building. Either way, the Mistresses of Versailles shatters these perceptions. Sally Christie’s novels are full of life and personality and vivid imagery of life at Versailles and 18th century France.
- These books will make you laugh out loud. This is another way this series will shatter your perception of historical fiction. I think it’s an unwritten rule somewhere (that Sally Christie tossed to the wind) that historical fiction is definitely, 100% not supposed to be funny. Aside from the mistresses’ schemes and antics, Christie’s writing is clever and witty, which will have you snorting and chuckling (chortling?).
- If you’re a fan of double entendres, you will find this series satisfying. Allow me a brief digression. Fact: I’m a fan of Shakespeare. Also Fact: One of the reasons I love Shakespeare’s plays so much is because of all of the eloquently disguised references to butts. I happen to have a crude sense of humor, and Shakespeare makes me
gigglechortle, and Sally Christie definitely gives Shakespeare a run for his shillings.
- You will realize that you’re actually mildly obsessed with 18th century France. Going into this series, I knew very little about 18th century France aside from the French Revolution (because school) and Marie Antoinette (because Sofia Coppola), and I found neither to be particularly memorable. (The Mistresses of Versailles takes place before the French Revolution anyway). In between chapters, you’ll find yourself surfing Wikipedia to learn everything there is to know about 18th century France, and you’ll start secretly hoping that Sally Christie does to the House of Bourbon what Phillipa Gregory did to the Plantagenet and the Tudors.
In the final installment of Sally Christie’s “tantalizing” (New York Daily News) Mistresses of Versailles trilogy, Jeanne Becu, a woman of astounding beauty but humble birth, works her way from the grimy back streets of Paris to the palace of Versailles, where the aging King Louis XV has become a jaded and bitter old philanderer. Jeanne bursts into his life and, as the Comtesse du Barry, quickly becomes his official mistress.
After decades suffering the King’s endless stream of Royal Favorites, the princesses of the Court have reached a breaking point. Horrified that he would bring the lowborn Comtesse du Barry into the hallowed halls of Versailles, Louis XV’s daughters, led by the indomitable Madame Adelaide, vow eternal enmity and enlist the young dauphiness Marie Antoinette in their fight against the new mistress. But as tensions rise and the French Revolution draws closer, a prostitute in the palace soon becomes the least of the nobility’s concerns.
Have you read in of the books from Sally Christie’s Mistresses of Versailles series?