Author: Juliet Grey
Publish Date: August 9, 2011
Why You're Reading This Book:
- You're a Historical Fiction fan.
- You love great detail.
From Goodreads.com: "Why must it be me? I wondered. When I am so clearly inadequate to my destiny?
Raised alongside her numerous brothers and sisters by the formidable empress of Austria, ten-year-old Maria Antonia knew that her idyllic existence would one day be sacrificed to her mother’s political ambitions. What she never anticipated was that the day in question would come so soon.
Before she can journey from sunlit picnics with her sisters in Vienna to the glitter, glamour, and gossip of Versailles, Antonia must change everything about herself in order to be accepted as dauphine of France and the wife of the awkward teenage boy who will one day be Louis XVI. Yet nothing can prepare her for the ingenuity and influence it will take to become queen.
Filled with smart history, treacherous rivalries, lavish clothes, and sparkling jewels, Becoming Marie Antoinette will utterly captivate fiction and history lovers alike."
My Two Cents:
This book is the first in a trilogy all about Marie Antoinette and the different periods in her life. Told in first person point of view from Marie Antoinette herself, "Becoming Marie Antoinette" tells the her story from the time when she was a young child in Austria to the time when she is the new wife of the heir to the French throne. I loved that the book was told from the perspective of Marie Antoinette herself. It really helped to pull me into the story. The tone is very conversational so you almost feel like Marie Antoinette is speaking to you as a friend.
Truth be told, I didn't know much about Marie Antoinette early life. Most of what I know about her are the events surrounding the French Revolution. Because of my limited knowledge about her early life, I really enjoyed reading about her childhood. In a way, I sort of felt bad for her. Growing up, her mother, the scheming, power-hungry Marie Therese, let's her know that Marie Antoinette is only a vehicle to expand the power of the Austro-empire. M.A. has to leave her home early on in order to go to France where she doesn't have a whole lot of support. I definitely felt for her.
Grey definitely makes M.A. a sympathetic character in this book, which I was not expecting. I really liked M.A. in this book. She's sort of mostly been seen as a villain historically. It was nice to see another side of her. It made her feel more real!
The historical detail was great in this book. You can definitely tell how much research went into the book. I like that the author included a bibliography at the end of the book so you could see the sources that she pulled from. I know that I'll be pulling from that list for some future reading.
Bottom line: A good book about Marie Antoinette in an unfamiliar light.