Last year, I was fortunate enough to receive a galley copy of Christine Trent's debut effort The Queen's Dollmaker. I loved The Queen's Dollmaker for its originality and cleverness; the story of Claudette Laurent, an entrepreneurial and strong willed frenchwoman who grows her business of dollmaking in England and comes to the notice of Marie Antoinette. If you have have not read the novel yet and have interest in the French Revolution I highly recommend it. There's much more to the story than the brief explanation above, so check out my review.
Christine Trent's next release is A Royal Likeness (a much more beguiling title than the original working title of The Wax Apprentice). I'm not that much of a fan of covers where the lady's head is cut off (can someone tell me why the industry favours this?) but this cover is gorgeous and if similar to The Queen's Dollmaker, will show the lady's face on the spine. A Royal Likeness is a sequel of sorts to The Queen's Dollmaker - this is Marguerite Ashby's story. Marguerite apprenticed to Claudette Laurent and eventually took over the management of the dollmaking shop.
As heiress to the famous Laurent Fashion Dolls business, Marguerite Ashby’s future seems secure. But France still seethes with violence in the wake of the Revolution. And when Marguerite’s husband Nicholas is killed during a riot at their shop, she leaves home vowing never to return. Instead, the young widow travels to Edinburgh and joins her old friend, Marie Tussaud, who has established a touring wax exhibition.
Under the great Tussaud’s patient instruction, Marguerite learns to mold wax into stunningly lifelike creations. When Prime Minister William Pitt commissions a wax figure of military hero Admiral Nelson, Marguerite becomes immersed in a dangerous adventure—and earns the admiration of two very different men. And as Britain battles to overthrow Napoleon and flush out spies against the Crown, Marguerite will find her own loyalties, and her heart, under fire from all sides.
With wit, flair, and a masterful eye for telling details, Christine Trent brings one of history’s most fascinating eras to vibrant life in an unforgettable story of desire, ambition, treachery, and courage.
Release Date: December 28, 2010
Format: Trade Paperback
The Queen's Dollmaker by Christine Trent