A highly entertaining biography of the Swedish Queen whose abdication, conversion to Catholicism, and Crivolous schemes made her the subject of incessant gossip for generations. Kristina had more than a small talent for scandal and trouble. Yet she was one of the greatest intellectuals of her time and her later eccentricities and bawdy pranks could not destroy the contribution she had made in the early years of her reign to the cultural development of her nation. She fulfilled the promise of her brilliance in the last decade of her life when her ""academy"" in Rome became the magnet for artists and scholars of every land. The author quotes at length from her Memoirs and the Diary of her principal lady in waiting, and from contemporary accounts of the controversial Queen. He succeeds both in presenting the complex personality of Kristina and in bringing to life the Europe that was emerging in the aftermath of the Thirty Years' War. Recommended for the general adult reader.