The Women of Versailles
‘Dark and rich, The Women of Versailles is filled with political intrigue, sexual awakening, and the roots of revolution.’ – Peggy Riley
‘[The Women of Versailles] demonstrates the power of great storytelling and excellent writing to transcend almost any barrier: of time, of nationality, of social setting and constraints.’ – Isabel Costello, The Literary Sofa
In The Women of Versailles, the narrative slips between the decadent world of Versailles during the reign of Louis XV and the day, just before the French revolution in 1789, that Versailles is stormed by the women of Paris and Louis XVI is forced to move the court to the Tuileries. At the centre of this story is Adélaïde, who struggles with her budding sexuality and a desire for freedom of expression, both of which conflict with the expectations of the restrictive court.
Adélaïde envies her brother, is bored with her sister and, when Madame de Pompadour, a bourgeoise, comes to court as her father’s mistress, she is smitten, with dangerous results. Adélaïde pushes against the confines of the court, blind to the difference between a mistress and princess, with tragic results.
Forty-four years later, under the looming shadow of the revolution, what has happened to the hopes of a young girl and the doomed regime in which she grew up?