“Mistress of the Revolution” is written in the form a memoir by a fictional character, Gabrielle de Montserrat, a beautiful minor noblewoman from Auvergne now living in England. Gabrielle relives her childhood, youth and the French Revolution that dramatically changed the life of so many. Although the author has taken great liberties with many of the settings this tragic story manages to convey both the excitement of the early days of the Revolution and the Terror endured by the nobility and the vast majority of the population.
This intricate portrait of a turbulent era is quite enthralling, what a page turner this experience turned out to be. At first the pacing may seem slow but it drastically changes during the Revolution and the tale swiftly becomes exciting. There is such a richness of details and the skilled handling of the 18th century language was amazing. I couldn't help but be plunged deep into a story full of romance, drama and passion not to leave out actual historical events and figures that populated the pages. Gabrielle is the lead narrator. She is a feisty, complex character and a victim of the status of women of the time. She also has a love interest in Pierre-André Coffinhal, the typical man found in romance novel but is forced by her meddling brother to marry a nasty piece of work. We find Gabrielle embroiled in the massacre at the Champs de Mars, the fall of the Tuileries, the prison massacres and the many tribulations that came her way. The description leaves quite an impression, admirably depicting the tension and volatility of an era when one wrong move could mean the guillotine….chilling….
This is a very captivating novel I enjoyed immensely