Tuesday, May 29, 2007

#40 - Tales of Passion, Tales of Woe by Sandra Gulland

This is the second book in the Josephine Trilogy by Sandra Gulland. "Tales of Passion, Tales of Woe'' depicts the first four years of the marriage of Josephine and Napoleon Bonaparte (1795-1799).
It is an emotional story partly because of Napoleon's military and political aspirations, but also because of problems within their marriage. Napoleon wants children, and Josephine is afraid she is too old to have more children. The Bonaparte family openly dislikes Josephine. And even though the French Revolution is over, the tension between revolutionists and royalists still exists.
This second book really makes you feel sympathy and also pity for Josephine. She is unsure if she made a good choice in her marriage, and she is constantly worried about producing an heir for Napoleon. His family begins to try to break up their marriage, telling Napoleon that she is unfaithful and too old to have a baby. Not to mention the fact that Napoleon has multiple affairs. Josephine is constantly being told that to be a good wife, a woman has to be blind to her husband's infidelities.
This book is like the first in the series, written like a diary from Josephine's perspective. Gulland obviously did copious research into not only Josephine's life, but the lives of her children, family members and everyone involved with the Bonapartes.
For those who enjoy historical fiction, this series is a great read!
50 Book Challenge 2007: 20/50


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