Book Review | The Orange Grove by Award-Winning Author @KateMurdoch3 #historicalfiction #hisfic #boo
Title: The Orange Grove
Author: Kate Murdoch
Genre: Historical Fiction
Blois, 1705. The château of Duc Hugo d'Amboise simmers with rivalry and intrigue. Henriette d'Augustin, one of five mistresses of the duc, lives at the chateau with her daughter. When the duc's wife, Duchesse Charlotte, maliciously undermines a new mistress, Letitia, Henriette is forced to choose between position and morality. She fights to maintain her status whilst targeted by the duchesse who will do anything to harm her enemies. The arrival of charismatic tarot reader, Romain de Villiers, further escalates tensions as rivals in love and domestic politics strive for supremacy. In a society where status is a matter of life and death, Henriette must stay true to herself, her daughter, and her heart, all the while hiding a painful secret of her own.
Welcome to the château of Duc Hugo d’Amboise, where status and political jockeying are exchanged between the sheets. Life is good for the Duc until his new mistress, Letitia, arrives. He’s captivated by her and spends all his time with her, practically ignoring the other mistresses and his wife. Duchesse Charlotte seethes with envy and plots to get rid of the new mistress. She cajoles the other mistresses to help her and Henriette is caught in the middle. Will she forego her position at the château to follow her heart or will she bend to the will of the Duchesse in order to secure her and her daughter’s stability?
Kate Murdoch has done it again. She’s taken one of my favourite time periods (early 18th century France) and breathed new life into it. Everything from the day to day life of the household and all its residents to the class system to clothing is 100% historically accurate. Her descriptive narration articulates every nuance of the story as each scene unfolds. In rich detail and from multiple points of view, the reader not only connects with each character but in a sense, becomes a part of the story. I couldn’t stop reading once I started, and even lost sleep because of it. My husband blames Kate Murdoch and I have to say, the tiredness I felt the next day was worth it.
If you love immersive historical fiction with intrigue, backstabbing and social climbing plus a darn good mystery to unravel, The Orange Grove is a must-read! Highly recommend and will, I’m sure, earn plenty of awards.
My Rating: 5+ stars
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Kate Murdoch is the author of Stone Circle. She exhibited widely as a painter both in Australia and internationally and was a finalist in a number of prize shows before turning her hand to writing. In between writing historical fiction, she enjoys writing short stories and flash fiction. Her short-form fiction is regularly published in Australia, UK, US and Canada. Stone Circle is a historical fantasy novel set in Renaissance Italy. It was released by Fireship Press December 1st 2017. Her novel, The Orange Grove, about the passions and intrigues of court mistresses in 18th century France, will be published by Regal House Publishing in 2019.
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Reviewed by: Mrs. N