Author: Juliet Grey
Publisher: Random House
Publish Date: May 15, 2012
Source: HF Virtual Tours
Why You're Reading This Book:
- You're a historical fiction fan.
- You love to hate characters.
From Goodreads.com: "Paris, 1774. At the tender age of eighteen, Marie Antoinette ascends to the French throne alongside her husband, Louis XVI. But behind the extravagance of the young queen’s elaborate silk gowns and dizzyingly high coiffures, she harbors deeper fears for her future and that of the Bourbon dynasty.
From the early growing pains of marriage to the joy of conceiving a child, from her passion for Swedish military attaché Axel von Fersen to the devastating Affair of the Diamond Necklace, Marie Antoinette tries to rise above the gossip and rivalries that encircle her. But as revolution blossoms in America, a much larger threat looms beyond the gilded gates of Versailles—one that could sweep away the French monarchy forever."
My Two Cents:
Days of Splendor, Days of Sorrow is the second book in a planned trilogy about the infamous Marie Antoinette. In this book, Marie Antoinette is in her early to mid-twenties. When the book opens, her place in the French palace is perilous because she and Louis still have not produced an heir for the French throne, mostly due to Louis' most unfortunate medical situation.
You do not need to read "Becoming Marie Antoinette" in order to enjoy "Days of Splendor, Days of Sorrow." You will definitely still be able to pick up the story. "Becoming Marie Antoinette" was a great story though so you should read it on that alone.
Okay, so in "Becoming Marie Antoinette," I really felt for Marie Antoinette. She was taken away from her home very early on and had to marry Louis and seemed nice enough. I had commented about how nice it was to see a different side of Toinette as she is called in the first book; however, I have to say that my sympathy for her slowly ran dry during this book. Now we are seeing the Toinette that we are more familiar with (the "let them eat cake" type). It's not a pretty picture.
France is suffering for all of the money that it lent to the United States for them to fight the American Revolution. The coffers are suffering and Toinette is still living large. She tries to explain away the excess by saying that she needs to basically be better dressed than anyone because as the dauphine and later the Queen of France, everyone looks up to her and would not if she were plain. Meanwhile, the French people are suffering and Toinette does not seem to understand why or why they are all so upset with the monarchy. Oh and then Louis is finally made able to produce an heir and Toinette picks up with the sexy Swede von Ferson not that long after. She seems to bounce from one amusement to another with no care for what she's doing.
Even with as much as I didn't care for Toinette's character in the book, I still really enjoyed this book. Toinette is just sort of fun to hate. She is really into herself and doesn't seem to care who she tramples on. She's able to explain away all of the less desirable parts of herself as things she must do. Grey does a really fantastic job walking the line between making Toinette act up while still having her remain someone that you want to read about. It takes a real talent to do that!
Bottom line: A great HF read!
Don't Forget to Follow the Rest of the Tour:
Monday, October 1
Feature & Giveaway at Passages to the Past
Tuesday, October 2
Review & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages
Wednesday, October 3
Review at The Musings of a Book Junkie
Monday, October 8
Review at A Writer's Life: Working With the Muse
Review & Giveaway at Devourer of Books
Tuesday, October 9
Author Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Connection
Wednesday, October 10
Review at The Broke and The Bookish
Thursday, October 11
Author Interview at A Writer's Life: Working With the Muse
Friday, October 12
Review at A Bookish Libraria
Monday, October 15
Review at Ageless Pages Reviews
Tuesday, October 16
Author Guest Post at The Musings of a Book Junkie
Wednesday, October 17
Author Interview & Giveaway at Ageless Pages Reviews
Thursday, October 18
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Friday, October 19
Review at Medieval Bookworm
Monday, October 22
Review & Giveaway at A Library of My Own
Tuesday, October 23
Review at A Bookish Affair
Wednesday, October 24
Review at Confessions of an Avid Reader
Friday, October 26
Review & Giveaway at Luxury Reading
Author Guest Post & Giveaway at A Bookish Affair
Monday, October 29
Review & Giveaway at The Maiden's Court
Tuesday, October 30
Author Guest Post at Historical Boys
Wednesday, October 31
Review at Tiny Library
Thursday, November 1
Review & Giveaway at The True Book Addict
Friday, November 2
Review at The Lady Gwyn's Kingdom