Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Review: The Women of Chateau Lafayette by Stephanie Dray

The Women of Chateau Lafayette
by Stephanie Dray

Publisher: Berkley
Pages: 576
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Most castles are protected by men. This one by women.

A founding mother...

1774. Gently-bred noblewoman Adrienne Lafayette becomes her husband, the Marquis de Lafayette's political partner in the fight for American independence. But when their idealism sparks revolution in France and the guillotine threatens everything she holds dear, Adrienne must renounce the complicated man she loves, or risk her life for a legacy that will inspire generations to come.

A daring visionary...

1914. Glittering New York socialite Beatrice Chanler is a force of nature, daunted by nothing--not her humble beginnings, her crumbling marriage, or the outbreak of war. But after witnessing the devastation in France firsthand, Beatrice takes on the challenge of a lifetime: convincing America to fight for what's right.

A reluctant resistor...

1940. French school-teacher and aspiring artist Marthe Simone has an orphan's self-reliance and wants nothing to do with war. But as the realities of Nazi occupation transform her life in the isolated castle where she came of age, she makes a discovery that calls into question who she is, and more importantly, who she is willing to become.

Kritters Thoughts:  Three women in three different time periods make up this epic story.  Adrienne Lafayette, a woman left out of history books who was the strong woman encouraging her husband Lafayette to aid America in its quest for freedom, but also had pursuits of her own that thankfully in this fictional tale are brought into the light of day.  Beatrice Chanler is married to an Astor which gives her an entry point to New York elite, she uses these connections to make aid for France in World War I.  Marthe Simone an orphan herself is a teacher at the orphanage that raised her and while World War II is around her, she is trying to figure out how she can give aid to those in need.  

What a fantastic, epic book about three women.  I loved that all three of the stories were in this one book, but they each could have had their own stand alone novel!  Throughout all three stories, the reader gets to experience a woman at a time in war and how they want to impact either their community next door or abroad.  At a time, where women aren't front and center, I appreciated seeing these deep dives into these three women as they navigated life.  

The way the author weaved these stories together was so great.  There were so many perfectly placed little hints and notes that just tied them together from the beginning.  I couldn't stop reading this book because I wanted to read the full conclusion.  

One of the big stand outs for me was reading about Lafayette, himself before, we Americans know of him.  To read about the beginning of his marriage and how his younger life shaped him made him such a bigger character to me.  Made me want to read more about him in general.  

I have read two of Stephanie Dray's books and loved them and there are two on my TBR that I hope to get to soon.  I just love the way she writes historical fiction and bringing these long gone people to life and giving them full stories.    

Rating: absolutely loved it and want a sequel

Ebook 2021 Challenge: 34 out of 100

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Berkley  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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