Saturday, March 20, 2021

Review: The Queen's Dressmaker by Meghan Masterson

The Queen's Dressmaker
by Meghan Masterson

Publisher: Bookouture
Pages: 303
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  As part of Marie Antoinette’s household, Giselle ensures the queen is always perfectly dressed in opulent gowns, without a feather or ruffle out of place. Being so close to power comes with benefits, and Giselle admires the queen’s kindness and style. But it also makes her a perfect target for enemies of the Crown…

The palace of Versailles shimmers with gilt, crystal, mirrors and silk. Life within its walls is governed by a complex set of rules that are a million miles away from Giselle’s respectable, but modest, upbringing in Paris. On a visit home to her own family, Giselle is caught in the middle of a violent street riot. When dashing Léon comes to her aid, she falls madly in love with the young, idealistic revolutionary, as the French capital burns around them.

Giselle begins sewing the tricolor rosettes of the revolution, which she conceals beneath her clothes. Guiltily hiding them from the queen, who has only ever shown her friendship, she arranges secret meetings with her new love whenever she can slip away from her duties. But outside Versailles, people are angry and soon the mob breaks down the doors of this enchanted palace, forcing Giselle’s two worlds to collide.

With the lives of the royal family at stake and Léon rising within the ranks of the revolutionaries, Giselle faces a heart-wrenching choice. She is asked to help the monarchs escape France but this means risking the guillotine herself… Will she take the chance to save the life of her beloved queen? And can she do so without betraying the man she loves?

Kritters Thoughts:  An interesting perspective on Marie Antoinette from one of the ladies in her court as they are going through the turmoil that would result in her death and the death of her husband.  Giselle comes from a good family that finds themselves in the middle of the revolution and then she goes to her place of work and is in the middle of it and seeing it from a different point of view.  

I know only a bare minimum of Marie Antoinette's story, so to get some more details but from a unique point of view was so fun to read.  I also love that with a historical fiction, you learn about the main events, but you also learn about the feelings of others as they go through these historical moments.  It is a good sign when a historical fiction book makes me consult the internet for facts to know the full depth of the situation - a prod for knowledge is always a good thing in my book (pun intended).

It was exciting to find out after finishing the book that this was a debut novel and there could be many more to come from this author.  I hope she continues to focus on characters that are just adjacent to the limelight and give color to the person, place and time.  

Rating: enjoyable, but didn't leave me wanting more

Ebook 2021 Challenge: 23 out of 100

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Bookouture.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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