Young Honneure lives happily with her mother at Chateau D'Amboise, home to kings and the last home of artist and inventor Leonardo da Vinci. But her Loire Valley idyll ends when her mother dies and she's sent to the Mansarts household as a foster child.

The young girl's fears are quelled when she meets her new family, including the charming Phillipe, who is a few years older than she. As they mature, both Honneure and Phillipe have occasion to accept positions in the Court of Versailles. Honneure's girlish crush blossoms into true love, but soon the intrigue and deceptions hidden within the court make Honneure and Phillipe outcasts. However, they are still bound by duty and honor to Louis XVI and the young Marie Antoinette.

In the shadow of the guillotine and the last days of a doomed monarchy, the secrets Honneure and Phillipe keep from each other could very well destroy any chance the two might have to be happy together.

A gripping and richly developed saga, this tale features two very strong characters set in seemingly impossible circumstances. Heavy with interesting historical details, this novel is a good read for those who relish the setting of the French Revolution. (Oct., 475 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
April Redmon