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The bizarre events which brought Henri of Navarre to the throne of France as Henry IV in 1589, the deadly conflicts of Huguenots and Catholics, and the shrewd manipulations of this most popular king are simplified here to create a pastel backdrop for the impressive amours of Henri. There was Fleurette, a garden lass of low degree, and Suzanne, an aged pedant's wife who dallied in the pantry, and Charlotte, little Fosseuse, long-loved Corisande, and Gabrielle who died. . . etc., etc. But girls grow old and kings grow choosy, and Henri must have an heir. Henri's first wife Margot, sister to Henry III (but not closely related to Henri IV) was no mean fornicator herself and she was for a time an ideal mate -- they respected each other's proclivities. But Margot's devotion to yet another Henri (de Guise, leader of the Catholic League) led to trouble, and it was some time before Henri could divorce her and marry Marie, Marquise d'Entragues. In spite of murders, poisonings, and wars, the action concentrates mainly on royal advances into bed and boudoir. Reissued from a 1963 English edition -- lightminded ruff-and-buff entertainment which is one of Plaidy's best.

Pub Date: Nov. 14th, 1973
Publisher: Putnam