The Devil's Queen
A Novel of Catherine de Medici
By Jeanne Kalogridis
(St. Martin's Press, Hardcover, 9780312368432, 480pp.)
Publication Date: July 21, 2009
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From Jeanne Kalogridis, the bestselling author of I, Mona Lisa and The Borgia Bride, comes a new novel that tells the passionate story of a queen who loved not wisely . . . but all too well.
Confidante of Nostradamus, scheming mother-in-law to Mary, Queen of Scots, and architect of the bloody St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, Catherine de Medici is one of the most maligned monarchs in history. In her latest historical fiction, Jeanne Kalogridis tells Catherine’s story—that of a tender young girl, destined to be a pawn in Machiavellian games.
Born into one of Florence’s most powerful families, Catherine was soon left a fabulously rich heiress by the early deaths of her parents. Violent conflict rent the city state and she found herself imprisoned and threatened by her family’s enemies before finally being released and married off to the handsome Prince Henry of France.
Overshadowed by her husband’s mistress, the gorgeous, conniving Diane de Poitiers, and unable to bear children, Catherine resorted to the dark arts of sorcery to win Henry’s love and enhance her fertility—for which she would pay a price. Against the lavish and decadent backdrop of the French court, and Catherine’s blood-soaked visions of the future, Kalogridis reveals the great love and desire Catherine bore for her husband, Henry, and her stark determination to keep her sons on the throne.
Jeanne Kalogridis lives with her partner in North Carolina, where they share a house with two dogs. She is the author of the critically acclaimed novels The Borgia Bride and I, Mona Lisa and other numerous dark fantasy and historical novels.
Advance Praise for The Devil’s Queen
“Seasoned historic novelist Kalogridis nails the palace intrigue and lush pageantry of the Renaissance.” —Publishers Weekly
“Kalogridis puts a human face on one of the most reviled women in history. . . . Catherine displays a cunning guile and a ruthless streak tempered by her great love for her husband and children. Interwoven into her life story and lending this fictional biography an almost mystical bent is her symbiotic relationship with Cosimo Ruggieri, a mysterious medieval psychic who plays an ever-expanding role in Catherine’s fortunes.” —Booklist
“Jeanne Kalogridis writes a visionary story featuring lush and descriptive places . . . and expertly tells the story of the life of Catherine de Medici. . . . The relationship between Catherine and the mysterious Cosimo Ruggieri is fascinating and surprisingly tender while Catherine’s relationship with her husband, King Henri is heartbreaking. . . . Jeanne Kalogridis is a very thorough and detailed writer offering true facts and realistic characterizations in an entertaining story . . . her work is truly inspired. . . . It is a stunning and fabulous look at the 16th century in politics, royalty, and love.”—Examiner.com
“A sweeping, dynamic novel of a woman who was both powerful and powerless in the life she lived. . . . Beautifully written and impeccably researched, The Devil’s Queen is a giant of a novel about a giant of a woman. Catherine de Medici is brought to life through her own words and thoughts, and readers will get to intimately know this remarkable, vulnerable and brave woman.”—Romance Reivews Today
“From the revolution in Florence when she is eight years old to the growing clash between Catholicism and Protestantism that throws France into civil war and senseless bloodshed wrought of religious intolerance, Catherine cuts her teeth on intrigue, loyalty, betrayal, and the fickleness of kings.”—CurledUpWithAGoodBook.com
“I enjoyed the book immensely. . . . It is very well written and well worth the time it will take to read. Be sure to have enough time to sit and actually get into it . . . it will keep you enthralled.”—NightOwlRomance.com
Praise for The Borgia Bride
“From sexual passion to mortal danger, the dramatic shift of real historical events will keep the reader turning the pages.” —Philippa Gregory, author of The Other Boleyn Girl
“Entertaining.” —USA Today
Praise for I, Mona Lisa
“Kalogridis’s fevered bodice ripper invents a passionate woman behind La Gioconda’s enigmatic smile.” —Publishers Weekly