Historical Fiction; Inspirational
3rd in Trilogy
Summary: Rachelle and Fabien continue their romance in the face of Catherine Medici's plots and amidst impending religious civil war. Their families are in danger and they are in deep danger due to their beliefs and positions relative to the throne. With their deep faith, they must try to make it through alive.
Thoughts: This book starts rather thrillingly with suspense as Rachelle and Fabien try to stay ahead of Catherine Medici and her plots.
I guess my biggest problem with the book is that the protagonists sucked while the villains didn't seem that bad. Rachelle is a drip to me and I kept imagining Fabien as speaking English in an exaggerated French accent rather than speaking French which has been translated for my benefit in to English. This makes him seem skeevy. Andelot just seems like a total loser. In contrast Catherine Medici is portrayed in a relentlessly bad light while I find her travails interesting. I mean, she's a foreign queen with a dead husband who was always more devoted to his mistress than to her and children who probably wouldn't look after her and are weak anyway. What would she do if she wasn't Queen Regent? Probably be stuck to wither away in the country or be sent back to Italy, which was no longer home. I'm very sympathetic to her and that weakens the book for me. In fact every time, the main characters talk about how awful she is, I like her more. Maurice is also positioned as a villain but I usually found him rather hapless and more of a stock character than a person with real motives and feelings so he was neutralized. Luckily the Guises are quite villainous; they're probably one of the few sets of characters where I agreed with the author's writing.
I really liked that they included the glossary of terms at the end instead of the beginning like in the other books because I find it easier to access that way. I also found the language even more flowery than in the previous books but it's probably at about the same level as them.
Note: At the end, it says there is a fourth book coming in 2008. As far as I can tell, that never happened which makes the ending of this book very unsatisfactory for those who like closure. Luckily I can share that Catherine Medici lived another 29 years (to 1589) meaning that she had plenty of time for scheming.
Overall: 3.5/5 Overall I'm glad I read this because I've been wanting to read the trilogy for a while but it wasn't fantastic; I'm not sure I would have read all of them if I hadn't checked them out of the library at the same time.
Cover: I love the blue-I think this was my favorite and was the book that first caught my eye.