By Karleen Koen
Louis XIV is among the best-known monarchs ever to grace the French throne. yet what used to be he like as a tender man—the guy sooner than Versailles? After the loss of life of his top minister, Cardinal Mazarin, twenty-two-year-old Louis steps into governing France. He’s nonetheless a tender guy, yet person who, as king, willfully takes every little thing he can get—including his brother’s spouse. because the love affair among Louis and Princess Henriette burns, it units the dominion at the street towards unmistakable scandal and clash with the Vatican. each girl desires him. He needs to face what he's keen to sacrifice for love.But there are different difficulties lurking outdoors the chateau of Fontainebleau: a boy in an iron masks has been noticeable within the woods, and the king’s finance minister, Nicolas Fouquet, has confirmed to be extra robust than Louis ever thought—a guy who can make an exceptional best friend or develop into a deadly foe . . .Meticulously researched and vividly dropped at existence through the beautiful prose of Karleen Koen, earlier than Versailles dares to discover the forces that formed an iconic king and made up our minds the destiny of an empire.
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Extra info for Before Versailles: A Novel of Louis XIV
He cried. Now others ran into the clearing. The groom cursed himself for letting her ride so far from the château. Were they in danger? What was happening? Who was this, now? A band of thieves? Decent people pursuing a mad, nearly grown boy? What? Then he saw that one was a soldier, a musketeer, wearing the colors of the great and powerful Cardinal Mazarin, first minister to the king, dying now—all France knew it—power and wealth unable to stop that grimmest of cutthroats and thieves, death. The musketeer, gaunt and fierce-faced, made a signal, and every man halted where he stood.
And we’re going to find the strongest, fattest, cleanest wet nurse in France to feed him. Maybe we’ll even send for a Spanish one. Would you like that?
Sacred Christ, I’m an ugly fellow, Péguilin thought. The king, by contrast, was tall and lean, his face a little like a hawk’s, same flickering eyes, same slight and hard edge to the mouth. Louis’s early morning exercise ended now. Except for himself and those friends who chose to wake early, and of course servants, the palace was still asleep. It would rise for Mass, closer to the noon hour, when courtiers would run from one royal set of apartments to the next: the king’s, Monsieur’s, the queen mother’s, the young queen’s.