This lush historical story set in sixteenth-century France goes off like a rocket at around page 100, just at the moment when readers may have started to give up hope of anything very much happening at all. But once 15-year-old Mélisande sees her sister driven to death after her lover is slain by cruel Count de Ferignay, this fictional big-dipper finally gets going, hurtling by instances of poisoning, murder, rape and torture to a final happy ending thanks to an escape down one of the many secret passages that always seem to be there when they are most needed. During this time, Mélisande is charged with fulfilling a prophecy entrusted to her by the famous soothsayer Nostradamus. She thinks this involves saving the life of King Charles IX, Catherine de’ Medici’s flawed son from whom even Homer Simpson could learn something about lack of impulse control. But it turns out that Nostradamus was really referring to King Henri of Navarre, a much stronger character destined to heal the religious wars in France described here so graphically. Throw in some hidden chambers belonging to the Knights Templar, a treacherous Italian spy and a tamed leopard, and there is surely enough highly wrought adventure here to keep any reader happy. While the exigencies of writing melodrama sometimes push Breslin’s prose too far towards the purple corner, she is a good enough writer to make sure that this rousing story is always clearly told and cleverly plotted.
http://booksforkeeps.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/bfklogo.png 0 0 Angie Hill http://booksforkeeps.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/bfklogo.png Angie Hill2008-05-07 14:40:172023-01-07 15:34:08The Nostradamus Prophecy