The Secret Life of Josephine

Napoleon's Bird of Paradise

Carolly Erickson

St. Martin's Griffin

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The bestselling author of The Hidden Diary of Marie Antoinette and The Last Wife of Henry VIII returns with an enchanting novel about the ambitious, amoral, vulnerable woman who became the first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte.

Fashion icon, leader of France’s society in the turbulent years of the guillotine and the bloody Napoleonic Wars, the alluring Josephine was a tough survivor—yet she also had a gentle, haunting quality that made her irresistible to her contemporaries, especially to the mysterious, compelling stranger from Martinique who captured her heart.

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Book Excerpts

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Chapter 1


That night, the night I first met Scipion du Roure, all I could think of was the ball and my gown of pale yellow silk and the garland of fragrant white flowering jasmine Euphemia had woven into my hair. I hummed as I dressed, practicing walking in the wide skirt on its stiff wire frame and glancing at my reflection in the pier glass that stood in the middle of my bedroom.
My eyes were bright, my skin warm and glowing in the candlelight. I remember thinking, I am beautiful. Every man at the ball will want to dance with me.

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Reviews

Praise for The Secret Life of Josephine

Praise for The Secret Life of Josephine

“Rollicking good fun.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Erickson has a deft hand with psychological portraiture and historical detail.  She strips away the romantic idealism with which the empress’s life is often distorted.” —PublishersWeekly.com

“Fans…will enjoy this latest concoction.” —Library Journal

 

Praise for The Hidden Diary of Marie Antoinette

“I read The Hidden Diary of Marie Antoinette in two days, and when I finished it, I re-read the final pages, as hungry for more as a child scraping the last crumbs of chocolate cake off her plate with her fingers.” —The New York Times Book Review

“[A] fascinating first novel . . . highly recommended.” —Library Journal (starred review)


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About the Author

Carolly Erickson

Distinguished historian Carolly Erickson is the author of Rival to the Queen, The Memoirs of Mary Queen of Scots, The First Elizabeth, The Last Wife of Henry VIII, and many other prize-winning works of fiction and nonfiction. Her novel The Tsarina’s Daughter won the Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award for Best Historical Fiction. She lives in Hawaii.

 

Carolly Erickson

Photo: Brian Reed
Carolly Erickson

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Available Formats and Book Details

The Secret Life of Josephine
Napoleon's Bird of Paradise
Carolly Erickson

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin
August 2008
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312386092
ISBN10: 0312386095
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 352 pages
$21.99

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
September 2007
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429918800
ISBN10: 1429918802
6 1/8 x 9 1/4 inches, 336 pages
$7.99
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St. Martin's Griffin

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