Sandra Gulland, author of the riveting and critically acclaimed Josephine B series, has written an engrossing and touching novel about Louise de la Valliere, one of Louis XIV's most interesting, charming mistresses.
I am a huge fan of Ms. Gulland's charming personality and enchanting writing style. As soon as I learned of Mistress of the Sun's impending release in Canada, I spent the extra postage and ordered it through Amazon.ca
I read the book in record time. In fact, I reluctantly completed it this morning at one o'clock. I am not disappointed to have spent the extra money on postage. It was one of the best novels I have read in the last year.
Mistress of the Sun beautifully tells the story of Louise de la Valliere, a chaste young woman with a loving heart and quiet nature, who, despite her religious upbringing and guilt, falls in love with a very married, very magnetic Louis XIV. The story is set during the golden years of Louis' epoch - when he was still young, dashing, brazen, and not yet entirely jaded by the intrigues and excesses of his court. It makes for a compelling backdrop, one that ensnares the reader.
Ms. Gulland, deft as ever, masterfully weaves together a story that seems to come together colorfully with each word. Her characterizations are subtle and brilliant. This reader grew to love innocent, tender Louise and felt her heart break when certain tragedies befell the character.
It is clear that Ms. Gulland did her research, peppering the story with interesting but obscure facts about court life, provincial supersitions, and horsemanship.
For anyone who loves French history or historical novels, Mistress of the Sun must be read. It sparkles as brilliantly Versailles in the summer sun!